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substance abuse

Picture of William Heisel

How likely are you to get hooked if you start taking prescription painkillers? There's scant evidence because most painkiller studies focus on whether they work. Whether they are addictive is logged merely as a side effect.

Picture of Laura Ungar

Over the past two years, I’ve spoken with dozens of Kentuckians battling prescription drug abuse. All of the stories broke my heart. But they needed to be told.

Picture of Allie  Hostler

Journalist Allie Hostler examines the devastating impact of drug and alcohol addiction on the Hoopa Valley Tribe in California.

Picture of Laura Ungar

This is part of Laura Ungar's fellowship project, where she looks at how the addiction surge affects the next generation — newborns suffering drug withdrawal because of their mothers’ drug abuse.

Picture of Jane Stevens

Contrary to popular belief, resilience is not innate. If you stress a child long enough and don't provide any nurturing to recover from the stress, research shows that the effects are damaging and long-term.

Picture of Bill Macfadyen

In the past, the study of addiction has often been focused on substances — like heroin, marijuana and alcohol. But experts in the field now believe that addiction begins with the “reward circuitry” in the brain rather than the substances themselves.

Picture of Bill Macfadyen

Alcoholism forced 20-year-old Amy to move away from Santa Barbara and everything she knew. She had begun drinking at age 16 and a pattern of dependence started soon after, forcing her into a succession of rehabilitation facilities before she moved to Oklahoma in an attempt to break the cycle.

Picture of Alison Knezevich

Lori McComas Chaffins spent a decade battling an addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs before she decided to change her life.

Picture of R. Jan Gurley

There’s a growing recognition of the role that complex post-traumatic stress disorder plays in trapping people in long-term homelessness. Understanding how PTSD unfolds can help us better understand the homeless and their health issues.

Picture of Alison Knezevich

Some lawmakers say they're disappointed that Senate President Earl Ray Tomblin slashed funding to fight substance abuse and to improve end-of-life health care.

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Announcements

U.S. children and teens have struggled with increasing rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal behavior for much of the past decade. Join us as we explore the systemic causes and policy failures that have accelerated the crisis and its inequitable impact, as well as promising community-driven approaches and evidence-based practices. The webinar will provide fresh ideas for reporting on the mental health of youth and investigating the systems and services. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors and a social media consultant to join its team. Learn more about the positions and apply.

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