People are more likely to try drugs for the first time during the summer

American teenagers and adults are more likely to try illegal or recreational drugs for the first time in the summer, a new study shows.

Led by researchers at NYU School of Medicine, the study found that over a third (34 percent) of recent LSD initiates first used the drug in the summer. In addition, 30 percent of marijuana, 30 percent of ecstasy (also known as MDMA or Molly), and 28 percent of cocaine use was found to begin in summer months.

“First-time users may be unfamiliar with the effects of various drugs, so it is important to first understand when people are most likely to start these behaviors,” says study senior investigator Joseph J. Palamar, MPH, PhD, an associate professor in the Department of Population Health at NYU School of Medicine.

In 2017, according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, more than 3 million people in the United States tried LSD, marijuana, cocaine, or ecstasy for the first time.

Full story at Science Daily

Night owls’ health may benefit from ‘simple’ routine adjustments

People who go to bed late and wake up late can often experience health problems because their body clock does not align with the regular rhythms of modern society. However, a new study suggests that a few easy routine adjustments could go a long way for night owls.

Research from earlier this year found that night owls — people who naturally keep late hours — experience an effect similar to jet lag on a daily basis.

This occurs, at least in part, because they have to meet the requirements of a world that we created for “morning people,” in which 9 to 5 jobs are standard, and there is the expectation that people should primarily work in the mornings.

Full story at Medical News Today

Yoga keeps the mind and body young, 22 clinical trials show

A review analyzing the results of 22 randomized clinical trials has found that yoga practice can improve many aspects of physical and mental health among older adults.

Yoga refers to a series of mind-body practices that originate in Hindu tradition.

However, they are growing in popularity across the world as an alternative well-being practice.

Statistic show that in 2015 in the United States alone, as many as 36.7 million people practiced yoga, and by 2020, estimates suggest that this number will have increased to over 55 million people.

Full story at Medical News Today

15 Percent of Teens and Young Adults Prescribed Opioids During ER Visit

Almost 15 percent of teens and young adults are prescribed opioids during an emergency room visit, according to a new study.

In contrast, 3 percent of teens and young adults seen in an outpatient clinic receive an opioid prescription, NBC News reports.

“Adolescents and young adults are such a high-risk population for opioid misuse and future addiction,” said study author Joel Hudgins, M.D., of the Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. “We found the rates of opioid prescriptions were pretty high, at 15 percent, which is right in line with adult data.”

Full story at drugfree.org

Use Of Buprenorphine To Treat Opioid Addiction Proliferates In California

Buprenorphine, a relative newcomer in the treatment of opioid addiction, is growing in popularity among California doctors as regulatory changes, physician training and other initiatives make the medication more widely accessible.

The rate of Medi-Cal enrollees who received buprenorphine nearly quadrupled from the end of 2014 to the third quarter of 2018, according to data released by Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicaid program. The rate for methadone — an older and more commonly used drug — was almost unchanged from the end of 2014 through the last quarter of 2017, the most recent period for which data are available.

Buprenorphine and methadone are both opioids. Both reduce cravings for heroin and synthetic opioids while minimizing withdrawal symptoms. But buprenorphine is less potent and less likely to result in fatal overdoses than methadone. California doctors have more flexibility in prescribing it than with methadone or naltrexone, another medication used to treat addiction.

Full story at Kaiser Health News