CPR Guidelines – What’s New in the Medical Field?

CPR done in hospital settingWritten by Sam Darwin

It is common for the American Heart Association (AHA) to update its CPR guidelines every five years. These guidelines result from a meticulous evidence review process that lasts several years. But in 2015, the organization decided to take a different approach to this evaluation process and standards. It unveiled a new strategy that uses ongoing, online evidence evaluation. 

This new adjustment is necessary as it makes it possible to assimilate different scientific breakthroughs. Therefore, they ensure they are more effective and can introduce the guidelines across hospitals and communities. 

In 2020, the AHA organization released its guidelines under the new procedure. The policies contain 491 specific guidelines for CPR for laypeople and medical professionals. 

This article will define CPR and the best time to use it. Besides, it will also expound more on the latest advancement of CPR in the medical field. 

CPR and CPR Training?

In a medical emergency, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can help to save a person’s life in case of breathing complications or when their heart stops. To perform CPR the right way, you must either undergo CPR training or be CPR-certified. Such training sessions do not mandate physical presence and can even be taken online.

When a person is experiencing cardiac arrest, their heart will be unable to pump blood to the rest of the body, including the brain and lungs. Medical care is highly recommended during this state, as death can occur within minutes.  

CPR is effective as it imitates the heart’s pumping action and uses chest compressions. It is effective as each compression supports the body’s natural blood circulation. 

Remember that heart attacks and cardiac arrest are different. When the heart’s blood supply is cut off, a patient will have a heart attack. Besides, during a heart attack, a person can speak and breathe. 

When a person is undergoing a heart attack, they may not need CPR. But it is safe to rush this person to a nearby hospital. This is because cardiac arrest is more likely to occur after a heart attack. 

The Latest CPR Guidelines in the Medical Field

1. Encourages Layperson to Administer CPR

Most of the AHA CPR guidelines focus on CPR treatment practices for medical professionals. However, the organization has spent a lot of time updating its standards for laypeople’s education and training also. So you can renew your CPR card online as the organization aims to make it more accessible. 

This is because recent statics revealed that about 350,000 adult patients went into cardiac arrest outside hospitals in 2015. And before EMS teams arrived, less than 40% of the patients received CPR from bystanders, while 12% received AED use. 

According to reports, the rate of cardiac arrests outside of a hospital has reached a severe plateau since 2012. That’s why AHA is keen to promote online CPR training for a layperson in its latest guidelines. This will ensure they have self-confidence in performing life-saving CPR. 

2. As a Layperson, You Should Start CPR Immediately

This has been among the requirements from the 2010 AHA guidelines. A lay rescuer shouldn’t bother to check for a pulse in case a patient suddenly collapses. The right thing to do is assume cardiac arrest and start CPR immediately. 

The latest 2020 guidelines confirmed that recommendation. They encourage lay rescuers to do CPR right away in such circumstances and not waste time checking for a pulse. 

This is because most non-medical practitioners often find it challenging to find a pulse, especially in emergencies.  Besides, CPR first aid is less dangerous even if the patient is not in cardiac arrest. 

3. Advice on Online Video Training for Layperson CPR

The latest AHA guidelines encourage accessibility and education for laypeople as well. It is vital to have CPR training available to anyone who cares about saving lives. 

AHA recommendations from 2015 state that online self-learning paired with hands-on, instructor-led training for layperson CPR should be considered alternatives to traditional in-person seminars.

Additionally, the research proved that video-based online CPR training and self-directed teaching have no significant difference from in-person training. So if you’re a layperson CPR, you can take CPR certification online, which will still apply according to the 2020 AHA guidelines. 

With these new guidelines, AHA hopes many people will feel encouraged to pursue a CPR certification. This is because this type of training is available widely. Besides, if you need a CPR renewal certification, you can access it anytime. 

Moreover, the 2020 guidelines encourage lay rescuers to learn how to administer Naloxone to patients experiencing a drug overdose. Besides, they also encourage middle and high schools to introduce CPR training to establish a sense of confidence and familiarity at a young age for many lay rescuers. 

4. A Mobile System That Can Alert Trained Laypersons CPRCPR First Aid Training Concept

The latest CPR guidelines encourage people to leverage the latest mobile phone technologies. This will aid in notifying the CPR and AED-trained bystanders in case of an emergency with a cardiac arrest patient. 

This technology will make it quick and simple for dispatchers to notify trained CPR volunteers and bystanders in case of an emergency in a neighborhood. This will be a vital accomplishment as it increases the likelihood that cardiac arrest patients will receive life-saving CPR before the EMTs arrive. 

Moreover, the Internal Liaison on Resuscitation (ILCOR) supports this advice, as its thorough analysis found that a mobile warning system might speed up trained bystander responses. And as a result, it will increase the number of cardiac arrests patients receiving bystander CPR. Besides, this will raise the survival rates for cardiac arrest patients outside hospitals. 

5. Quality of Adult CPR With Chest Compressions

Regarding adult CPR, the AHA guidelines reiterate the importance of quality chest compression. It is crucial as it ensures improved survival metrics, but the compression depth rate changes guidelines are only for adult patients. 

According to the guidelines, it is highly advised for adult patients to have chest compressions of at least 2 inches, but it shouldn’t be greater than 2.4 inches. 

But it is also encouraged to have a moderate strength for compression rates between 100-120 compressions per minute. 


CPR first aid is now considered one of the most crucial components of survival in case of a cardiac arrest. The latest guidelines by AHA are based on scientific research and intend to increase a person’s chances of survival in case of cardiac arrest. These new guidelines are necessary because there is always a 90% possibility of death in cardiac arrest cases outside the hospital. 

So the AHA guidelines recommendation for online video classes for layperson CPR training is a great place to start. This will help see an increase in survival for cardiac arrest patients. Also, it is vital to take a CPR certification renewal to stay updated with the latest CPR guidelines. 




Please also review AIHCP’s Health Care Life Coaching Certificate and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Life Coaching.

The Benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for PTSD

Person in military uniform holding a sign that reads PTSDWritten by Claire Szewczyk


The first time that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) reached the public eye, it was known as the concept of “shell shock” – debilitating nightmares, hyper-reactivity and increased dangerous behaviors in veterans who had experienced traumas of combat during World War I. It is still very much a common diagnosis amongst the veteran community, with an incidence of almost 13% (PTSD and veterans: Breaking down the statistics 2021).

However, in more recent years, PTSD has been a more commonly diagnosed mental health disorder that can affect anyone who was exposed to any form of abuse, trauma, or life-threatening situation.

As a result of PTSD becoming more of a common occurrence among the population, it has also become more important for those who are experiencing symptoms to seek out treatment. There are a wide variety of options available, including the tried and true, research-verified effective Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT. 

CBT focuses on the relationship among thoughts, feelings and behaviors, targets current problems and symptoms, and then focuses on changing patterns of behavior that lead to difficulty functioning. 


What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can develop after a person has experienced or witnessed a traumatic event, such as a combat event, a natural disaster, a car accident, or a violent crime. 

Symptoms of PTSD include re-experiencing the traumatic event through flashbacks or nightmares, avoidance of reminders of the event, and increased feelings of anxiety and depression.

Most people who go through traumatic events may have temporary difficulties with adjusting and coping, but with good self-care practices and time, they usually are able to overcome it. If symptoms worsen, linger and interfere with day-to-day functioning, they might be experiencing PTSD.

Getting effective treatment after PTSD symptoms develop can be critical to reducing symptoms and improving overall function. 


What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy focuses on the relationship between thoughts, feelings and behaviors. It targets individuals’ current concerns and issues with day-to-day-functioning and the symptoms they are experiencing, and then provides ways to help challenge negative patterns of thought and behavior, in order to help improve quality of life.


How does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Help PTSD Symptoms?

Several theories that revolve around trauma help explain why CBT is an effective treatment to reduce symptoms of PTSD.

Emotional Processing Theory suggests those who have experienced a traumatic event can develop associations with reminders of the event. Challenging these associations, especially the ones that lead to unhealthy functioning, is the core of emotional processing.

Social Cognitive Theory suggests that those who have defined their existing beliefs about themselves, others, and the world, based on the trauma they experienced, often struggle with unhelpful interpretations of their experiences of their environment. 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been scientifically proven through many studies, to alleviate symptoms of PTSD. Typically, CBT treatment includes two main components: exposure therapy and cognitive restructuring. 

A man in military uniform in therapy. Exposure Therapy 

Exposure Therapy aims to reduce the emotional distress associated with reminders of the triggering event. Exposure Therapy operates similarly to how it sounds. It involves gradually exposing the individual to reminders of the traumatic event in a controlled and safe environment. 

If you go through Exposure Therapy you may be asked to recall the traumatic event in therapy, visit places, or engage in activities that are associated with the traumatic event. Over time, the hope is that you will be able to identify your triggers and use coping mechanisms to downplay the symptoms you experience (Yetman, Exposure therapy: Types, how it’s done, and more 2021).

Cognitive Restructuring or Prolonged Exposure (PE) Therapy 

The second aspect of CBT is Cognitive Restructuring or Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE). PE is a type of CBT treatment that involves identifying and changing negative thought patterns associated with the traumatic event (Prolonged exposure (PE).

Cognitive restructuring may include challenging and refuting negative beliefs about oneself, the world, and others developed due to the traumatic event. 

For example, a person with PTSD may believe that the world is dangerous and that they are helpless to protect themselves, which can lead to anxiety and fear. 

Through Cognitive restructuring, a therapist may help the person to challenge and refute this belief and replace it with a more balanced and realistic perspective.


CBT is a scientifically proven effective treatment for PTSD

CBT is effective in treating PTSD in several studies. CBT was found to be effective in reducing symptoms of PTSD in adults in over 12-15 sessions either in a group setting or one-on-one.

CBT has also been effective in treating PTSD in specific populations, including veterans and individuals who have experienced a traumatic event in childhood. The VA and the American Psychological Association recommend using CBT for PTSD survivors. CBT not only targets PTSD but also targets other symptoms of PTSD such as depression and anxiety.

Multiple studies through the years have championed CBT for PTSD treatment. (Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for treatment of PTSD).


What are the Benefits of CBT?

Besides the fact that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a scientifically proven effective treatment for individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, there’s also a wide variety of benefits over other forms of therapy. Here’s a few of them:


     1. It gives people hope about their condition.

Oftentimes, due to the nature of mental health disorders, sometimes it can cause those who have been diagnosed to have a pessimistic outlook about their future wellbeing. It can be difficult to think about a time where their illness won’t impact their life.

CBT challenges this mindset–and offers hope for the future.

It does this by using its own methods to challenge thoughts and ideas like this. Provides a way to seek out alternative possibilities. That life could be very different, and in a more positive way.


     2. It develops self-esteem.

It’s not a surprise to note that with many mental health conditions, also comes with a lower sense of self-worth and self-esteem.

This feeds into the cycle of negative thinking, which influences behaviors, and vice versa.

CBT can help disrupt these negative thoughts and patterns, and as a result, help develop more confidence in a person’s own abilities and strengths. 

Understanding how thoughts work, and how they are under the control of those who are thinking them, changes things on a fundamental level. Including the way people see themselves.


     3. It can help with relaxation.

Because CBT directly helps with managing thoughts and emotions, this comes with it the ability to control how a person responds to their symptoms.

As a result, it helps regulate responses to triggers and reduce symptoms by utilizing a variety of relaxation techniques.


     4. It develops more rational thought processes.

Perhaps the most important benefit of CBT, is that it helps people regain control of their thoughts and emotions. 

Over time, the process of questioning and challenging our thought processes, and replacing them with healthier ones, can transform people entirely.


CBT is a great way to treat PTSD

In conclusion, CBT is a widely recognized and effective treatment for PTSD. This type of therapy is based on the idea that our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are interconnected and that we can change our emotional response to a traumatic event by changing our thoughts and behaviors. 

Through exposure therapy and cognitive restructuring, CBT can help individuals reduce symptoms of PTSD, such as re-experiencing the traumatic event, avoiding reminders of the event, and decreasing feelings of anxiety and depression. 


Claire Szewczyk Bio PicAuthor Bio:

Claire Szewczyk is a Digital Content Coordinator for Hill & Ponton, PA in Florida. She was a former US Airforce civilian employee, who worked at Hill Air Force Base, in Layton, UT as a flight testing administrator. She has also spent several years working with the Department of Veterans Affairs audiology programs in Salt Lake City, UT and Pocatello, ID. She enjoys working with the Veteran population and keeping them up to date with information they need the most.





Please also review AIHCP’s Anger Management Specialist Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Anger Management Counseling.



American Psychological Association. (n.d.). Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for treatment of PTSD. American Psychological Association. Retrieved January 30, 2023, from https://www.apa.org/ptsd-guideline/treatments/cognitive-behavioral-therapy

American Psychological Association. (n.d.). Prolonged exposure (PE). American Psychological Association. Retrieved January 30, 2023, from https://www.apa.org/ptsd-guideline/treatments/prolonged-exposure

Emotional processing theory (EPT) and exposure therapy for … – springer. SpringerLink. (n.d.). Retrieved January 26, 2023, from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10879-006-9008-y

PTSD and veterans: Breaking down the statistics. Hill & Ponton, P.A. (2021, May 11). Retrieved January 30, 2023, from https://www.hillandponton.com/veterans-statistics/ptsd/

Yetman, D. (2021, June 21). Exposure therapy: Types, how it’s done, and more. Healthline. Retrieved January 30, 2023, from https://www.healthline.com/health/exposure-therapy#:~:text=Exposure%20therapy%20is%20a%20kind,therapist%20in%20a%20safe%20environment. 

Factors Influencing Medication Compliance in Elderly Patients

Elderly patient receiving careWritten by Sam Darwin

The elderly population is growing at an unprecedented rate. According to population reports, the number of people aged 65 and over is expected to double by 2050. Along with this increase in life expectancy comes an increase in chronic health conditions. Many of these chronic conditions are managed with medication. This means that an increasing number of older adults take many medications daily to improve their quality of life. But taking different drugs can be hard, and many older people have trouble sticking to their treatment plan.

Not taking medications as prescribed is a big problem among older people, and it can have bad results. It can make drug treatments less effective and lead to hospitalization, a loss of cognitive function, or even death. This article will discuss the factors that influence medication compliance in elderly patients.

Medication compliance is the degree to which patients follow prescribed medications. It is a significant problem in older adults due to several factors. Here are factors that influence medication compliance among elderly patients:


  1. Patient-Provider Relationship

An important factor influencing medication compliance is a positive patient-provider relationship in senior care. Patients comfortable talking with their doctors about their medications will take them more frequently. Those uncomfortable discussing these issues with their physicians are less likely to comply.

A primary care physician must establish a positive rapport to ensure success with their patient’s treatment plans. They can do this by taking an interest in what is happening in their lives. They should try to understand where they are coming from on medication decisions. This will help them better understand which treatments might suit each patient and which may not work out.


  1. Medication Knowledge

A significant factor in medication compliance is patient knowledge of their medications. Elderly patients with limited knowledge of medication use are more likely not to adhere. Patients who can identify the name and strength of their drugs will take them more frequently than those who do not. This may be due to a lack of understanding, or it may be due to a lack of information. They should know about the medication’s side effects or interactions with other drugs taken by the patient.


  1. Medication Side Effects Management

Medication side effects management is an essential factor for elderly patients. Side effects are common reasons patients do not take their medication as prescribed. Elderly patients may be more susceptible to side effects due to age-related changes in the body. These changes can make it more difficult for the body to process and eliminate medications. As a result, side effects may be more severe in elderly patients.

Besides, it’s also important to note that many elderly patients experience side effects from their medication. These side effects may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and headaches. Most side effects can be managed with lifestyle changes and medication dosage adjustments. Managing severe side effects will make the patients comply with the medications.


  1. Patients’ Beliefs

Patients’ beliefs about medicine are vital. They can affect their decision-making regarding medication compliance. Patients may have misconceptions about medications and their effects on the body. For example, patients may believe certain medications may cause side effects such as dizziness or drowsiness.

Some patients may believe that a prescription drug is more effective than another one in treating a condition. These beliefs can influence their decision-making as they weigh whether it is worth taking medication. They can decide if it is safe to take an alternative treatment instead.

Doctors can also treat the soul than just the dying body. Please also review our Pastoral Thanatology Program

  1. Social Support

Social support is another factor that influences medication compliance among elderly individuals. Social support refers to the presence of family, friends, and community members. These are people who provide emotional support during stress or illness. Social support has a positive impact on patient compliance with medication regimens. Individuals with social support are less likely to miss or need extra doses because they rely on others for help when needed.


  1. Reduction in the Number of Medications

The number of medications a patient takes is one factor that may influence adherence. For elderly patients, many medications are often prescribed as part of the treatment plan for various conditions. These conditions may be chronic or acute and demand different treatment regimens. As a result, elderly patients may have various prescriptions from physicians or healthcare providers.

The high number of medications taken by elderly patients often leads to confusion. This is especially regarding prescription drugs’ dose, frequency, and duration. Reducing the number or substituting one medication with another will make patients adhere.

  1. Cost of Medication

The cost of medicine is an essential factor that influences medication compliance. This is because the elderly are more likely to be on fixed incomes. This makes it difficult for them to afford the cost of taking their medicines. Moreover, it may be costly for them to purchase the treatment or fill prescriptions at a pharmacy.

Uninsured or underinsured patients may not be able to afford the medications they need to treat their illnesses. These factors play a significant role in increased patient non-compliance with their prescribed medications. It is essential to consider whether a drug is truly needed or merely being used to mask symptoms rather than treating the root cause of the disease.


  1. Medication Accessibility

Medication accessibility is another factor that influences patient compliance with their prescribed medications. Medications are often unavailable at pharmacies or hospitals. This leads to increased reliance on self-medication or self-prescription. Self-prescription involves patients purchasing medicines from other sources. These could be pharmacies and drug stores rather than their primary care provider or pharmacy.

Elderly patients can also have difficulty accessing their medications. This could be due to a lack of transportation, income limitations, or other financial constraints. Easy accessibility to a primary doctor near me ensures medical compliance.


  1. Patient’s Understanding of their Medical Condition

The most crucial factor in medication compliance is the patient’s understanding of their medical condition. If patients understand the reason for taking medication, they will be more likely to take it as directed. Patients should also be taught how to store their drugs properly and reduce side effects.



Patients who feel they have little or no say in their medical decisions are less likely to do what doctors tell them to do. Doctors should ensure their patients understand why they are being given medications. Sometimes it’s hard for older people to remember to take all their medicines. Thus, family doctors near me must know this when they write prescriptions. Patients must be knowledgeable about their medications, have access to them, and know when and how to take them.



  1. What are some common reasons elderly patients might not comply with their medication regimen?

Several factors can influence medication compliance in elderly patients. Poor eyesight and hearing can make it difficult to understand dosing instructions or follow medication schedules. Patients may also forget to take their medications.

  1. What are some of the consequences of poor medication compliance in elderly patients?

Poor compliance can lead to various consequences. These include decreased quality of life, increased risk of hospitalization, and even death.

  1. How can caregivers and loved ones help ensure that elderly patients take their medications as prescribed?

First, it is important to make sure that the elderly patient understands why they are taking the medication. Caregivers and loved ones should remind the older adults the dosage and time to take the medications.


Please also review AIHCP’s Health Care Life Coaching Certificate and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Life Coaching.

Holistic Approach to Treating Cancer and Its Side Effects

Physiotherapist doing accupuncture

Written by Fay Smith


Traditional holistic approaches focus on multidimensional wellness aspects involving movement, meditation, and using food, supplements, herbs, essential oils, and homeopathic remedies as medicine.

People may consider these holistic approaches as alternative remedies to help with cancer treatment. But while these alternatives don’t play a direct role in curing cancer, they may help you cope with the signs and symptoms of this disease.

Some cancers like lung, colon, breast, and prostate cancer are more prevalent than others. There are also types of cancer, like mesothelioma, which is directly linked to asbestos exposure.

The Mesothelioma Group’s site provides an informative resource on the stages of mesothelioma, its diagnosis, and treatment options for its symptoms.

What holistic approaches may help manage cancer and its side effects? Are there any benefits to using such methods in addressing the side effects of rare cancers?

This article explores the various ways to manage cancer holistically. Additionally, the article discusses the advantages of managing the disease’s side effects using the holistic approach.


Holistic Ways to Help Manage or Treat Cancer and its Side Effects

People often use the term holistic approach or alternative medicine to refer to methods healthcare providers don’t usually offer.

However, researchers continue to study these alternative remedies to help gather evidence to determine whether healthcare professionals can use these methods alongside standard treatments.

When used with standard medical therapies, these evidence-based integrative medicine methods may help relieve various symptoms related to cancer and its treatment.

However, these alternative or integrative treatments generally aren’t potent enough to replace standard medicine completely. So if you or someone you know has cancer, discuss your options with your healthcare provider to find the right mix of alternative and standard treatments.

Holistic and alternative methods that can aid in treating cancer and its side effects include:

  • Acupuncture: This method involves inserting tiny needles into your skin at specific points.

Studies suggest acupuncture may help relieve nausea caused by chemotherapy. Acupuncture may also help relieve pain in people with cancer.

If you wish to try acupuncture, ensure that a licensed practitioner performs this technique using sterile needles.

Acupuncture isn’t recommended if you have a low blood count or if you’re taking blood thinners. So it’s best to consult your healthcare provider before you proceed with this procedure.

Another related method is acupressure, in which a practitioner applies mild pressure instead of needles to various areas of your body to help relieve nausea.

  • Aromatherapy: This technique uses fragrant essential oils for various therapeutic benefits like relieving stress, managing anxiety, and promoting sleep.

You can add oils infused with scents like lavender, chamomile, citrus, and peppermint to your bath water or apply these oils to your skin during a massage. You can also heat the fragrant oils to release their scents into the air.

Aromatherapy may help relieve cancer symptoms like nausea, pain, and stress.

While you can perform aromatherapy on your own or with a practitioner with relative safety, some oils applied to the skin can cause allergies. Talk to a medical provider to determine which oils are best for you.

  • Massage: Massages comprise different techniques that involve kneading your skin, tendons, and muscles to promote relaxation and help relieve stress and muscle tension.

Research shows that massage therapy can be a part of supportive care for cancer patients who are interested in trying this method.

Clinical practice guidelines recommend massage as one approach to help with anxiety, stress, fatigue, depression, and quality of life.

Some cancer centers have massage therapists among their staff. Your healthcare provider can also refer you to a therapist who regularly works with individuals with cancer.

If you decide to have a massage, ask your therapist to avoid tumors, surgical scars, or radiation treatment areas. Meanwhile, if you have bone cancer or other related diseases like osteoporosis, tell your massage therapist to use light pressure.

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): This method is a form of talk therapy wherein a mental health counselor works to help you see challenging situations better so you can respond to these events more effectively.

CBT may help individuals with cancer manage their sleep problems by identifying and replacing behaviors and thoughts that are causing or worsening their sleep issues, promoting sound sleep.

One study noted that oncology practitioners can consider integrating CBT in various ways to allow nonpharmacologic treatments to aid in cancer symptom management.


Benefits of the Holistic Approach in Helping Treat the Side Effects of Rare Cancers

Holistic health is a life approach that encourages individuals to acknowledge the whole person through physical, emotional, mental, social, intellectual, and spiritual aspects. These alternative methods may help individuals deal with various health conditions, including cancer.

Although alternative treatments can’t cure your cancer, they may provide some relief from the signs and symptoms of the disease.

Cancers, including rare ones, can cause numerous side effects, including pain, anxiety, fatigue, nausea, stress, and sleep problems. Holistic treatment methods may help manage these adverse effects.

For example, if you’re experiencing anxiety, try massage, meditation, relaxation techniques, or music therapy to help relieve this symptom.

Meanwhile, if you’re stressed, go for aromatherapy, yoga, or exercise. For pain, consider acupuncture, massage, or hypnosis.

These alternative methods aren’t meant to replace standard cancer treatments, so you must consult a doctor or oncologist about how you can incorporate these remedies to help you cope with cancer and its symptoms.

To learn more about alternative medicine or the holistic approach to help with cancer, contact the National Cancer Institute at 1-800-422-6237 or visit cancer.gov.

If you are interested in more information visit AIHCP’s Holistic & Integrative Health Care Practice Certification Program Here


What is Holistic Health?


Alternative cancer treatments: 11 options to consider


Aromatherapy: Do Essential Oils Really Work?


Massage Therapy for Health : What the Science Says


Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Patients With Cancer


What is Holistic Health?




What Is IOP in Mental Health?

Man lying on sofa talking to his therapist at therapy sessionWritten by Sam Darwin

IOP stands for Intensive Outpatient Program and patients with mental health issues are usually treated using this program. They go to treatment sessions like the in-patients, but the treatment is given during the day and not overnight.

The patients divide their time between home and the IOP center. These intensive outpatient programs aim to stabilize patients. They teach them techniques to manage their mental health conditions. Here’s what you need to know about IOP.


What Is Intensive Outpatient Treatment?

Intensive outpatient treatment is a form of mental health care. It provides the structure and support of therapy in a less restrictive setting than inpatient treatment. IOP aims to help you learn how to manage your symptoms and live more independently.

Intensive outpatient treatment consists of weekly or biweekly sessions. These are a combination of individual therapy and group therapy. Treatment is provided at a clinic or hospital, and patients attend for about four hours per day, five days a week. The length of the program varies, but it generally lasts between three months and one year.

IOP treatment focuses on helping you learn how to manage your mental health issues to live successfully in the community. Treatment often includes medication management and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).


How Long Does Intensive Outpatient Treatment Last?

Depending on the patient, intensive outpatient treatment lasts anywhere from four to twelve months. The number of hours per week varies by treatment center but typically ranges from four to five hours a day.

In some cases, intensive outpatient treatment may be combined with partial hospitalization. This is for patients who need more intensive care than usual outpatient treatment can provide. How long you stay depends on several factors, including:

  • For how long have you experienced symptoms of mental illness?
  • Your support system at home (e.g., family members, friends)
  • Your financial situation
  • Your ability to follow through with treatment recommendation

Suppose you have been diagnosed with a mental illness and have difficulty managing your symptoms. Or you’re having difficulty functioning at home or in your workplace. In that case, you might enjoy intensive outpatient treatment. Participating in this program will likely improve your mood, energy, and productivity.


Who Needs Intensive Outpatient Treatment?

IOP can help people diagnosed with a mental health disorder, such as depression or bipolar disorder. It’s also used to treat those struggling with alcohol or drug addiction.

IOP is appropriate for people who:

  • Have had a recent mental health crisis and are at risk of harming themselves or others
  • Have been hospitalized in the past six months and need additional therapy to prevent future hospitalizations
  • Are unable to take medications as prescribed because they have side effects
  • They are having trouble managing their symptoms without medications. This includes people who have tried medications but stopped taking them for side effects or other reasons.


girl sitting on the bank of the river

How Can I Get Started In IOP?

Inpatient treatment programs can be an important part of your recovery. You will gain from inpatient treatment if you struggle with a mental health condition. The level of care and support you receive from an inpatient treatment program will depend on the type of program you choose. Many different levels of care are available (IOP and residential treatment programs).

To start the process, you’ll have to contact your insurance provider to find out which facilities they cover. Once you have that information, it’s time to start looking into the different types of programs available near where you live or work.

Some people prefer to go straight into a residential program. Others prefer an intensive outpatient program first. Either way, getting started is as easy as visiting theheightstreatment.com and setting up an appointment for an assessment.


How Does IOP Help People With Mental Illness?

Inpatient treatment is one of the most effective ways to treat a person who has a severe mental illness. Inpatient treatment takes place in a hospital or other residential treatment facility. Here, professionals can receive around-the-clock care.

People hospitalized for mental illness often need more intensive services than outpatient treatment. This includes medication management and therapy. IOP can help people who are struggling with mental illness for a variety of reasons:

  • They may need more support than what their primary care provider offers.
  • They may have already been hospitalized but still have some symptoms that need to be addressed before returning home.
  • They may be unable to participate in outpatient therapy due to other factors such as work or family responsibilities.


How Does Intensive Outpatient Treatment Work?

Intensive outpatient treatment allows you to receive the same level of care that you would get in a hospital setting. But, the treatment is delivered on an outpatient basis. You will not be admitted to an inpatient unit or need to stay overnight. Instead, intensive outpatient programs usually involve regular visits with a therapist and group therapy sessions.

Intensive outpatient treatment may include individual and family therapy sessions if needed. These programs are designed for people who can’t leave their jobs or families for long periods.

Group therapy often involves working with patients who have similar issues as yourself, such as anxiety or depression. A therapist might also recommend joining a support group after intensive outpatient treatment. This way, you have someone else to talk to about your experiences.

Individual therapy is often used as a supplement to group therapy. It helps patients address specific problems related to their mental health issues. For example, suppose someone has an anxiety disorder and is having trouble leaving home every day for work. In that case, individual therapy could help them learn strategies for dealing with this problem to continue working without feeling anxious all day long.


Woman in mental health treatmentHow Does IOP Differ From Traditional Outpatient Programs?

In-patient treatment is one of the most effective options for individuals with severe mental illnesses. These services provide intensive care under a team of qualified professionals. They provide immediate help and support to patients who need it most.

In-patient treatment programs are very different from outpatient programs. Traditional outpatient programs are designed for people who live locally. They can attend regularly scheduled appointments during the week.

These outpatient programs aim to help patients maintain their independence. They teach skills and provide support. This allows them to live safely in the community without requiring constant supervision.

In-patient programs, however, provide 24-hour care in a controlled environment with many therapeutic services available on-site or nearby. While patients are not required to stay overnight, they can still stay for several days or weeks, depending on their needs and recovery plan.

In-patient psychiatric treatment provides intensive care for individuals suffering from severe mental illnesses.


What Types of Therapy are Offered During Intensive Outpatient Treatment?

The type of therapy offered in an intensive outpatient program depends on the needs of the individual. In general, most intensive outpatient programs offer a combination of therapies, including:

  • Individual therapy. This can include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy, or supportive psychotherapy.
  • Group counseling. These groups are often led by a licensed mental health professional. They focus on recovery and addiction, stress management, or anger management.
  • Family therapy. Some clinics offer family therapy, including individual sessions with parents and their children. They also have group sessions for families who want to support each other through treatment.
  • Brief medication management (BMM). Suppose you have been prescribed medication for your mental health condition during an intensive outpatient program treatment. In that case, you may also be eligible for BMM sessions with a psychiatrist or medical doctor. This professional should specialize in treating mental health conditions with medications.


Importance of Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)

IOPs aim to manage your symptoms, learn new skills, and improve your overall quality of life. Your psychiatrist and therapist will help you develop a treatment plan based on your needs and goals.

The benefits of IOP include:

  • A flexible schedule allows you to work, attend school, and take care of other responsibilities.
  • It helps you learn how to manage stress, handle problems in relationships, and cope with urges.
  • Providing a safe place to receive treatment while maintaining normal activities
  • You get a customized treatment plan based on your needs and goals
  • Short-term therapy can address specific issues in your life, such as depression, anxiety, or substance abuse.
  • The opportunity to learn new skills to cope with symptoms and develop healthy relationships with others
  • You’ll get support from other people trying to overcome similar problems.



It is vital to remember one of the essential aspects of mental health: you are not alone. It can be difficult to remember even someone with a history of depressive episodes. IOP programs or therapy groups may help offer reassurance even with a mental illness. There is contact with others, and there will always be contact with others.

And no matter what, you are never alone. When you need inpatient treatment for mental health, it is crucial to choose a facility based on the needs of your loved one. IOP has many benefits and can help progress and maintain recovery.



If you are interested in more information visit AIHCP’s Crisis Intervention Program here

The Benefits of Telehealth in Patient Care Management Today

Doctor Talking To Patient Through Video Chat On LaptopWritten By: Dominick L. Flarey, Ph.D., RN-BC, NEA-BC, FACHE

Telehealth is the use of digital information and communication technologies, such as computers and mobile devices, to access health care services remotely. It can be used to provide real-time clinical services to patients in remote locations, as well as to store and share medical data. Telehealth  has the potential to improve access to care, quality of care, and patient outcomes.

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the popularity of telehealth services. This trend is likely due to a variety of factors, including the increasing accessibility of high-speed Internet and mobile technologies, the rising cost of healthcare, and the growing demand for convenient and accessible healthcare services. Telehealth allows patients to consult with their healthcare providers from the comfort of their own homes, which can be a more convenient and affordable option than traditional in-person appointments.

Telehealth Care Benefits for Care Management

The use of telehealth in patient care  is on the rise due to its many benefits. Telehealth allows patients to consult with their doctors from the comfort of their own homes, which is especially beneficial for those with chronic illnesses or mobility issues. It also saves time and money by eliminating the need for travel to and from appointments. In addition, telehealth can improve communication between patients and their care providers, leading to better overall health outcomes.

Despite its many advantages, there are some challenges associated with telehealth. For example, not all medical conditions can be effectively treated via teleconference. In addition, there may be technical difficulties that can impede the quality of the consultation. Nonetheless, telehealth is a promising solution that can improve patient care in a number of ways.

There are many benefits to telehealth, including increased access to care, improved patient outcomes, and cost savings. Telehealth can improve access to care by providing care to patients in rural or underserved areas. Additionally, telehealth can improve patient outcomes by providing timely and convenient care. Finally, telehealth can save money by reducing the need for travel for appointments and reducing the length of hospital stays.


Ease of Access to Health Care Management

The use of telehealth has improved access to care for patients by providing them with more convenient and affordable options. Telehealth allows patients to connect with their care providers from any location, which can be especially helpful for those who live in rural areas or who have difficulty accessing transportation. In addition, telehealth services are often less expensive than traditional in-person visits, which can make them more affordable for patients.

Telehealth is the use of digital information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care and patient care. By using telehealth, medical providers can more easily and conveniently provide care to patients who may not be able to come into the office for an appointment. This is especially beneficial for patients who live in rural areas or who have difficulty traveling. Additionally, telehealth can be used to provide follow-up care or consultations, which can help improve patient outcomes.


3D illustration of computer keyboard with the script "Telehealth" on pale blue button. Remote service concept.Compliance to Health Care Management

The increased comfort for patients using telehealth is due to the ability to consult with a medical professional from the comfort of their own home. This reduces stress and anxiety related to seeking medical care in-person, which can be particularly beneficial for those with chronic conditions or mental health concerns. In addition, telehealth appointments are typically shorter than in-person visits, which can also contribute to patients’ increased comfort levels.

There is evidence to suggest that the use of telehealth can help to reduce the number of missed appointments among patients. This is likely due to the fact that telehealth can help to improve communication between patients and their care providers, and can also provide patients with greater flexibility in terms of when and how they receive care.

The ease of patient care for patients who live far away from health care centers of providers has greatly increased due to the implementation of telehealth services. Through the use of video conferencing, patients are able to consult with their doctors or specialists from the comfort of their own homes. This increases accessibility to medical care and decreases the need for travel, which can be difficult for those with chronic health conditions.

Telehealth also allows for more timely appointments and shorter waiting times. This is beneficial for both the patient and the provider, as it reduces the overall time spent on each case. In addition, telehealth appointments can be scheduled outside of normal working hours, making it easier for patients who have difficulty taking time off work or school. Overall, telehealth has had a positive impact on patient care by increasing access to medical services and reducing wait times.


Cost Reduction and Improved Outcomes

The use of telehealth services can help reduce the overall costs for patients. This is due to the fact that telehealth services can help to improve communication between patients and their healthcare providers. In addition, telehealth services can also help to improve access to care for patients. By using telehealth services, patients can avoid having to travel to see their healthcare provider. This can help to save time and money for patients.

The use of telehealth can result in improved patient outcomes. This is because telehealth provides patients with access to care that they would otherwise not have. Additionally, telehealth can help to improve communication between patients and providers, and can provide patients with education and support.


Case Management by Telehealth

Telehealth has been shown to be an effective means of providing case management services, particularly for patients who live in rural or underserved areas. Certified case managers can provide a wide range of services via telehealth, including assessment, care planning, coordination, and advocacy. This type of care delivery can help to ensure that patients receive the comprehensive care they need, while also reducing travel time and costs associated with traditional in-person visits.

The use of technology in case management for in home care telehealth by nurse case managers is essential to providing quality care. Technology allows nurse case managers to keep track of their patients’ progress, schedule appointments, and communicate with other members of the healthcare team. In addition, technology can help nurse case managers educate their patients about their condition and treatment options.

The use of video conferencing by nurse case managers allows for real-time interaction with patients and families, which can be beneficial in a number of ways. First, it enables the nurse to build rapport and trust with the patient, which is essential for providing effective care. Additionally, it allows the nurse to gather information about the patient’s condition and needs in a way that is more efficient and convenient than traditional in-person visits.

Nurse case managers are using innovative technologies today to communicate with other team members. These technologies include electronic medical records, computerized provider order entry systems, and electronic prescribing systems. By using these technologies, nurse case managers can more effectively coordinate care for their patients and realize the benefits of telehealth in practice.



In conclusion, telehealth is a valuable tool that can improve patient care in a number of ways. By providing patients with convenient access to care, telehealth can help to improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs. In addition, telehealth can also help to increase patient satisfaction by providing them with more control over their own care.

Most all specialty practice in health care today are using telehealth in care delivery. This is seen even more frequently in the specialty practice of Case Management by professional Registered Nurses and professional Licensed Social Workers. The advent of more expanded technologies in patient care has allowed the practice of case management to significantly expand in recent years bringing significant benefits of telehealth to patients and to the health care team. The American Academy of Case Management offers a comprehensive continuing education and case management certification program for those who are practicing health care professionals. Professionals have a period of two years in which to complete the program but may accelerate if they wish. To learn more about the program, you may access here.


Additional Readings

Telehealth Benefits and Barriers. S. Garjarawala, N. Pelkowski. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners. Vol 17, Issue 2: 2021. Access here

Increasing Access to Care: telehealth during Covid-19. D. Hoffman. Journal of Law and the Biosciences. Vol 7, Issue 1: 2020. Access here 

Strategies for Evaluating Telehealth. J. Chuo, et.al. Pediatrics. Vol. 146. Issue 5: 2020. Access here

On-Demand Synchronous Audio Video Telemedicine Visits are Cost Effective. G. Nord, et.al. The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. Vol 37. Issue 5: 2019. Access here


Case Management In- Home Care Technology Offers Patients Comprehensive Support

Case Management graphicWritten by: Dominick L. Flarey, Ph.D, RN-BC, NEA-BC, FACHE

As the population of older adults continues to grow, so does the demand for home care services. Case management  is a critical component of home care, as it helps to ensure that patients receive the coordinated care they need to improve their health outcomes.

Case managers work with patients and their families to develop a care plan that meets their specific needs. They also coordinate home care with other providers, such as home health aides, nurses, and doctors. This coordinated approach ensures that patients receive the best possible care. The goal of home care case management is to provide high-quality, cost-effective care that is in the best interest of the patient and their family.

Monitoring patients’ progress is an important part of case management in home care. By tracking patients’ health status and response to treatment, case managers can identify potential problems early on and take steps to address them.

Regular monitoring also allows case managers to evaluate the effectiveness of care plans and make necessary adjustments. This is especially important in home care, where patients may have complex needs and be receiving care from multiple providers. By closely monitoring their patients’ progress, home care case managers can play a vital role in ensuring that they receive the high-quality, coordinated care they need to improve their health outcomes.


Types of Technology

Over the past decade, information and wireless technology companies, senior long-term care entities and colleges and universities have developed and offer a line of products aimed at supporting professional home health care services and family caregiving.

Information technology applications and programs provide accounting and billing services and medical recordkeeping for home health care providers and biometrics, emergency phone calls, live customer services, medical alerts for patients and social activities coordination for seniors and their caregiving families.

Home health care is a rapidly growing industry, and technology plays an important role in providing care for patients. There are many different types of technology available to help home health care providers, including software that helps with scheduling and accounting, communication tools, and medical devices. Technology can help home health care providers provide better care for their patients, and it can also help patients stay connected to their loved ones and receive the support they need.

One of the most important advances in patient care technology is the ability to monitor heart function at home. This can be done through wearable devices that track heart rate and rhythm, or by using devices that measure electrical activity in the heart (ECG). These devices can help detect arrhythmias or other problems with heart function early on, before they become serious.

The home care technology market is growing rapidly as the demand for patient support services increases. Billing, medical records, food service ordering, and patient communications are all areas where home care technology can play a role.

Billing systems that allow patients to pay their bills online or through a mobile app are becoming more popular. Medical records systems that give patients access to their health information from a secure website or app are also gaining popularity. Food service ordering systems that allow patients to order their meals from a mobile app or website are becoming more common. And patient communication systems that allow patients to stay in touch with their care team via text, email, or video chat are becoming more prevalent.

According to the FCC, “an effective emergency alert system (EAS) can save lives and property by providing timely and accurate information about an impending hazard.” Emergency medical alert devices and systems are life-saving tools that can be used in the event of a medical emergency. These devices can be worn as a pendant or bracelet, and they can be connected to your home’s landline or cellular phone.

When activated, these devices will send a signal to the monitoring center, which will then dispatch emergency medical services (EMS). The monitoring center will also contact your loved ones or designated caregivers to let them know that you have requested help.

As a certified case manager, you are responsible for ensuring that your patients receive the best possible care. To do this, you must be well-informed about the technology used in home care today. Patient care technology has come a long way in recent years, and it is constantly evolving. As a case manager, it is your responsibility to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and developments. This will help you make sure that your patients are getting the best possible care.

Hospital admissions are costly and stressful for both patients and their families. By staying up-to-date on the latest patient care technology, you can help reduce hospital admissions and re-admissions. This will improve the overall  quality of care for your patients and save money for patients and the health care system.


heart monitor graphicSome Companies Providing Advanced Technologies

The following companies, applications and programs have been touted by researchers and experts in the senior care industry and government policymakers and lawmakers:

  • Acumen–In the last 23 years, this Mesa, Ariz.-based company provides financial management services for senior short-term care and long-term care facilities, states, counties and managed care organizations nationally, including billing, enrollment, and payment processing, reporting and training.


  • AT & T and Numera Libris–Both companies collaborate to blend wireless technology by AT & T with traditional emergency response systems by Numera to form comprehensive medical support for seniors with chronic conditions or transitioning from hospital care to skilled nursing or home health care. The result is meant to address personal safety and home health management. Called a “personal health gateway,” the system combines mobile emergency response, two-way voice, fall detection and location tracking.


  • Critical Signal Technologies (CST)–This Pittsfield, Mass. and Farmington Hills, Mich. Company provides a suite of personal emergency and medical monitoring services that assist patients with dizziness, falling, mobility issues, muscle weakness and vision problems. CST provides adaptive switches for quadriplegia, care transition and vital sign monitoring, cellular upgrades, coaching, door/window contacts, lock box, medication management, motion detector, multi-lingual response with fall down detection, multi-tenant coverage, pillow switch to summon help, reminder messaging, sensor mats, smoke or carbon monoxide alarm, standard personal response system, strobe lights and wall communicators.


  • CASOA–CASOA, which stands for The Community Assessment Survey for Older Adults, is a research survey program specializing in needs and preferences assessments of seniors offered by the National Research Center, Inc., a national survey research and evaluation firm based in Boulder, Colo. The program is meant to assist local governments, area agencies on aging, homeowners associations, senior short-term care and long-term care facilities and service providers to develop their social and medical programs for seniors.


  • Hamilton CapTel–This is a free, nationwide, telephone captioning service meant to make phone calls simple, clear and accessible for individuals with hearing loss. The company supplies phones with the captioning service in an app product that is compatible with and can be used with PCs, MacBook’s, iPhone, Android, BlackBerry smartphones, iPad and Android tablets.


  • iHealthHome–The Seattle-based company provides in-home monitoring and communications systems to enable care coordinators, family caregivers, home health care agencies, and; senior long-term and short-care facilities, including assisted living, congregate care and nursing homes. Services include assessments, biometrics, care management, communication between seniors and their caregiving families, in-home concierge system to order food and medicine by computer, medication management, messages for caregiver tasks, motion activity monitoring for safety, questionnaires, remote supervision, time and attendance tracking and video visits.


  • Intel-GE Care Innovations–The resulting personal response system is the result of a partnership between Intel, the computer chip company, and General Electric, the electrical services and government defense contractor. The suite includes a personal help button, emergency assistance, home base, medical alerts and 24-hour live response operators.


  • Panasonic HomeTeam–Panasonic, based in Newark, N.J., and Osaka, Japan, has developed an online service called HomeTeam meant to serve homebound seniors and their family caregivers that uses a video chat app for a tablet, laptop and computer to access interactive books such as Curious George and games such as chess and checkers with video calling. The app can be downloaded by grandparents and their grandchildren from the Apple App Store or Google Play and can be used with Androids or iPads. The company works with publishers such as Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing company, Disney and game developers to maintain children’s games and games on the company website.


  • SilverTreeHealth–This Chandler, Ariz.-based company provides integrated electronic health reporting and automated medical billing services that includes coding experts, software and efficiency controls. Service includes user-friendly interface, a boost of HIPAA compliance for senior long-term care facilities and other service providers; claim scrubbing; electronic resubmission of claims; payroll cost reductions; missed visit tracking; staff embezzlement reduction; accounting program integration; e-Eligibility; free live support; live, free upgrades; hourly backups; secure direct payments to bank accounts; real-time integration with thousands of insurance carriers; complete practice visibility; claims management tools; insurance practice profiling; accurate claim coding and tracking of contracted rates; patient scoring to determine likelihood to pay; scheduling of integration with billing processes; ePrescribe and eClaims; integrated credit card processing; experienced billing staff, and; weekly reviews of practice efficiencies.

Whether they specialize in billing, biometrics, emergency alerts, fall prevention, patient care monitoring, family ties or medical records management, these aforementioned products are meant to contribute to a comprehensive suite of solutions for families who cannot fulfill certain necessary tasks in caring for seniors and need outside technical intervention.



In recent years, nurse case managers have been increasingly managing in-home patients using care technology within more sophisticated health care delivery systems. This shift has been driven by a number of factors, including the increasing prevalence of chronic conditions, the aging population, and the rise of consumer-driven health care.

Care technology has played a major role in enabling nurse case managers to more effectively manage in-home patients. By providing real-time data on patients’ condition and allowing for two-way communication between patient and provider, care technology has helped to improve patient outcomes and satisfaction while reducing costs.

As health care delivery systems continue to evolve, it is likely that nurse case managers will play an even greater role in managing in-home patients using care technology. This trend represents a major opportunity for nurses to impact the quality and cost of health care delivery.


Case Management Certification

Are you a registered nurse or a health care professional interested in pursuing a career in Case Management? The American Academy of Case Management offers a full curriculum of continuing education courses in case management as well as a national Certification Program. To find out more about our programs, access here.

Additional Resources:

  1. Why Home Healthcare Needs More Technology and Training. Jessica Longly. HealthTech. October 29, 2020. Access here

From Facility to Home: How Health Care Could Shift by 2025. Oleg Bestsennyy, et.al. McKinsey & Company. February 1, 2022. Access here 

Does Adult ADHD Lead to Alcoholism or Drug Use? 

Written by Fay Smith

ADHD is a common diagnosis for kids who struggle in school, but what happens when kids grow up and struggle in their offices, communities, and relationships?

Adults with ADHD have difficult challenges, and many turn to drugs and alcohol to cope.

In this article, we’ll look at how and why that is.

How Adults Cope with ADHD

ADHD presents many challenges for adults, but one of the biggest is regularly lacking dopamine.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is largely responsible for the pleasure that you feel when you accomplish something. A sense of accomplishment boosts you and makes it easier to take on your next tasks. For people with ADHD, this doesn’t happen the same way.

Adults with ADHD have a different reward system than neurotypical adults. A normal work routine, including meetings, might be somewhat boring for an office manager who is neurotypical, but it could send someone with ADHD into a spiral.

Without feeling like they are accomplishing anything important to them, and receiving the dopamine boost that goes along with that, it becomes increasingly hard to concentrate.

Having ADHD and needing to do things you don’t want to do and aren’t interested in can be extremely difficult, and even painful.

It’s a process of trying to force your brain to act in ways it doesn’t want to. The result is usually a drop in neurotransmitters and the onset of depression. Up to 53% of people with ADHD also struggle with depression.

There are legal substances that can provide a lot of help to adults with ADHD. Coffee can help to stimulate the brain to produce more neurotransmitters, and legal CBD can help to relax the nervous system and provide the restful sleep that adults with ADHD need to maintain good brain health. Know more about it here.

However, there are many adults with ADHD who turn to alcohol and drugs – not just to cope with the pain of having ADHD as an adult in a world designed for neurotypical people, but to help manage an unruly brain that won’t seem to follow directions.

Why do ADHD Adults Turn to Drugs and Alcohol?

It’s important to note that every adult with ADHD was once a child with ADHD, and it is typically in pre-adolescence or adolescence when substance abuse problems or tendencies first arise.

An 8-year longitudinal study found that at the age of 14.9, 40% of ADHD subjects and only 22% of control subjects had used alcohol (Barkley et al. 1990). This suggests that alcohol and other drugs are more appealing to people with ADHD in early adolescence.

A different study found that at age 25, alcohol use was roughly equal between ADHD adults and control groups, but we know that early and intense alcohol use is a risk factor for later alcohol and drug problems.

Growing up is when most people start to face increasing demands on their time and attention, which is also when young adults with ADHD begin to face significant struggles and shoulder the shame that comes from not being able to act or be like everyone else.

ADHD adults use drugs to cope, practically and emotionally.

In a practical sense, drugs and alcohol change the brain and produce the mental states that people with ADHD are looking for. When you are unable to feel happy or concentrate, a cup of coffee can help. So can other drugs. When you can’t seem to calm down or regulate your energy or emotions, alcohol can help. So can other drugs.

Neurotypical adults might be able to take a deep breath and restore calm and focus, but this just doesn’t happen for ADHD adults, who struggle to regulate themselves.

On an emotional level, it is easy to blame yourself for your problems as someone with ADHD. An inability to focus can be mistaken as a lack of interest or care. Disinterest in boring and unrewarding tasks can come across as laziness.

Adults with ADHD have to deal with a disabling inability to focus, as well as being blamed personally for that inability to focus.

In a culture that values constant productivity and readiness, adults with ADHD often struggle to regulate their attention and emotions and use drugs or alcohol as tools to cope.

Recovery for Adults with ADHD and Drug Problems

Although alcohol and other drugs might relieve temporary symptoms of ADHD, they invariably make life worse.

This is not just for all of the reasons that you’re familiar with – the cost, the health impacts, the social impacts, etc – but also because alcohol and most other drugs are harmful to the brain and end up making symptoms worse in the long run.

A healthy brain releases more neurotransmitters that help focus and attention. An unhealthy brain doesn’t regulate itself well. When you start messing with your brain’s reward system, it makes it even harder to set things right.

If you or someone you know is an adult with ADHD and a drug or alcohol problem, find a treatment solution that also addresses the impacts of ADHD. True recovery requires solutions to multiple problems.



Author Bio: Fay Smith

Fay Smith worked in communications for five years before settling down with her husband. She’s now a mother of two young children and takes care of three lovable Pomeranians. Fay Smith is a regular contributor on various health and wellness sites. She also works as a freelance writer and researcher on wellness topics, such as alternative treatments and CBD.




Please also review AIHCP’s Attention Deficit Consulting certificate program and see if it matches your academic and professional goals.  The program in online and independent study and open to qualified professionals.

5 Ways to Regulate your Sleep Schedule

5 Ways to Regulate your Sleep Schedule

Written by McKenzie Jones 

Your whole life will suffer if you are not getting the right amount of sleep each night. Disrupted sleep schedules can affect both your physical health and your mental and emotional well-being. This is why it is so important to address any potential sleep disruptions and fix the problem before it becomes a serious issue. Here are five ways that you can regulate your sleep schedule so that you can get the rest that you need.

Promote Healthy Circadian Rhythm

Your sleep and wake cycles are controlled by the body’s natural circadian rhythm. Without a well-functioning circadian rhythm, your body does not know when it is time to sleep and when it is time to be alert.

There are a number of things that you can do to promote a healthy circadian rhythm. Exposing your body to natural light when you wake up sends the signal to your brain that it is time to get energized. It is also a good idea to avoid taking naps. If you must take a daytime snooze, make it quick and do it early in the afternoon rather than later in the day. Being diligent about exercising regularly can also help to support your body’s internal clock so that it functions at optimal levels.

Implement a Regular Bedtime Routine

You will be able to fall asleep more quickly if you train your body by implementing a regular bedtime routine. Your personal needs and preferences will dictate your routine. Perhaps you want to start the process with a relaxing bath or a warm mug of herbal tea? Other people find success in dimming the lights and reading for a bit before trying to fall asleep.

Another good way to signal to your body that it is time to go to bed is to engage in a consistent skincare routine before turning in for the night. Nourishing your skin with nutrients and hydration should be a part of your nightly routine, prepping your body and your mind for a good night of sleep. The right products from Happy Healthy You will also leave you feeling refreshed and relaxed and ready to welcome a night of quality sleep.

Minimize Blue Light

Your smartphone or tablet habit may be hindering your ability to get the rest that you need. Smartphones, tablets, and computer screens all emit blue light. This light can negatively affect circadian timing.

In order to prevent this from happening, you should avoid blue light the hour or two before bedtime. Rather than reaching for your phone before closing your eyes, try reading a book instead. You should also be intentional about limiting the amount of artificial light around you in the evening hours.

Create a Comfortable Sleep Environment

You cannot expect to get a restful night of sleep if you do not have a comfortable sleeping environment. Taking active steps to make this as relaxing as possible can have a profound effect on the quality of sleep that you enjoy.

In addition to cozy bedding and a mattress suited for your needs, you also need to be mindful of sleep and light pollution. You may find that you sleep better if you invest in a good pair of blackout shades. A white noise machine can be instrumental in blocking out extraneous noise so that you sleep more soundly. Experiment with a few different tools to find what works best for you in your quest to sleep better.

Limit Alcohol and Caffeine

What you drink in the hours before bed may also impact how quickly you fall asleep and if you are able to stay that way through the night. While you may fall asleep more quickly after a night of indulging in alcoholic drinks, the booze is also more likely to disrupt your rest and wake you up in the middle of the night.

Too much caffeine in the hours before bed can make you too wired to fall asleep. Reducing your consumption of both alcohol and caffeine starting in the late afternoon hours can prove beneficial in supporting healthy sleep patterns.

These five tips are all great ideas to help you to regulate your sleep schedule so that you wake up refreshed and ready to take on the day ahead.




The American Institute of Health Care Professionals offers a full continuing education program leading to Certification as a Health Care Life Coach, you may preview our program by accessing this link.

5 Reasons a Mammogram is Important for Women’s Health

Doctor reviewing mammogram on x-ray.

Written by McKenzie Jones 

What are Mammograms?

During your annual physical with the doctor, you may learn that it could be advantageous to have a mammogram. A mammogram is a simple medical procedure that uses low-energy x-rays to screen a human breast to detect potentially cancerous masses. In the US, an annual mammogram is the gold star procedure for early detection and is recommended as an annual procedure to anyone past the age of 40. Why is having a regular mammogram essential to women’s health? Read on to learn 5 reasons you should quit waiting around and schedule your annual exam today.

1. Early Detection Is Key

Cancer is a scary subject. However, if you are armed with facts and your own medical and testing data, you will be better prepared to face the road ahead. When you find cancer in its earlier stages, you have more treatment options available to you and a higher rate of long-term survival. Mammograms can “find” breast cancer roughly 5 years before you can feel it, which gives you more time to figure out your plan. The introduction of 3D mammography has also broadened the scope and abilities of cancer detection. Not only do 3D scans produce fewer false positives, but they have also improved detection rates by roughly 50%.

2. Mammograms are Smarter Than Fingertips

Women are encouraged to perform self-breast exams (SBEs) monthly for several reasons. Breasts are made up of uniquely irregular tissues and fats, and it’s good to get familiar with your breasts, chest, and armpit areas. This way, with time, you will be better equipped to feel if something is “off” or changing within your own body. Consider adding an SBE during your monthly menstruation to keep it recurring and regular. That being said, self-detection results in roughly 18-25% of breast cancer diagnoses, while mammograms can detect breast cancer in 87% of their screenees. Using multiple early-detection methods is a smart way to stay informed about your health.

3. Mammograms Have a Proven Track Record

Since 1990, an overall increase in regular mammograms in the US has helped reduce women’s breast cancer deaths by 30%. What a statistic! There is a direct connection between higher mammogram numbers and lower breast cancer-related fatalities. The process has also been streamlined due to successful detection rates. It is quite straightforward to get a mammogram referral from your primary care physician or an obgyn near me. The sooner you schedule and complete your mammogram, the better you’ll feel.

4. It’s Not Always Genetic

Yes, it is a fact that if you gave a genetic link to breast cancer, you have a higher likelihood of breast cancer. It’s super important that mammograms are a regular part of your life if you have a direct family member that developed breast cancer, so don’t play around or delay. However, it is also true that 75-85% of people diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history or known risk factors. Therefore, everyone must get regularly screened. Simply add it to the list of questions you have for your doctor during your annual physical, and they will be able to guide you in the right direction.

5. Time is of the Essence

Unfortunately, your risk factors increase and your long-term survival rates tend to decrease as you age. This is particularly noticeable after age 40 and continues as you get older. The age for an annual mammogram used to be set at 50, but studies have shown time and time again that finding out earlier than 50 affects your survival rates and complication risks. Since the recommendation has been lowered to 40 years, the number of breast cancer-related deaths has decreased.

Final Considerations…

One last thing to note: If you’re scared about scheduling a mammogram for any reason, consider an honest approach with your primary care physician. Explain your feelings, and allow them to reassure you. That is a completely normal reaction to have for something as daunting as cancer. Know that getting the facts will be better for your overall peace of mind. Schedule an OB appointment at your earliest convenience, and just check it off your list once and for all.


The American Institute of Health Care Professionals offers a full continuing education program leading to Certification as a Health Care Life Coach, you may preview our program by accessing this link.