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January 27, 2017

ALCOHOL USE IN YOUNG PEOPLE WHO USE PSYCHOSTIMULANTS

There has been a growing body of evidence that young people who use psychostimulants like MDMA or methamphetamine have high rates of risky alcohol use.  In December 2016, an article was published by the Australian Institute of Criminology titled "Alcohol use and motivations for drinking among types of young adult illicit stimulant users."  The paper draws on data from the Natural History Study of Drug Use, a longitudinal study of drug use among young adults in South East Queensland.  Some of the motivations for mixing alcohol with stimulants included reducing anxiety, increasing drinking capacity and helping with the comedown.

Download "Alcohol use and motivations for drinking among types of young adult illicit stimulant users." here (350KB PDF)

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January 20, 2017

HEALTH CHECK: WHAT MAKES IT SO HARD TO QUIT DRUGS?

Associate Professor Nicole Lee from the National Drug Research Institute published an article on "The Conversation" in December titled "Health Check: what makes it so hard to quit drugs?" The article looks at how alcohol and drugs affect neurotransmitters in the brain particularly dopamine which regulates emotion, motivation and pleasure. Withdrawal and tolerance is discussed and how people will continue to use substances to avoid the discomfort of withdrawal symptoms. A number of risk factors for dependence are listed such as trauma, connection to school and community to name a few and whether it is possible to make changes to drug dependence with or without the support of behavioural and cognitive therapies and sometimes medication.

Read the article here

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January 20, 2017

A TEN POINT GUIDE TO NOT OFFENDING TRANSGENDER PEOPLE

The ABC published an article last year which we think is worth revisiting.  "A 10-point guide to not offending transgender people" provides some tips for being respectful to transgender people.  The article includes an inclusive definition, advice on using correct pronouns, and corrects some unhelpful assumptions of transgender or gender diverse people.

Go to "A 10-point guide to not offending transgender people"

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December 9, 2016

HOW TO USE A SMOKERLYZER

With the help from staff from Metro South Addiction Services, Dovetail has created this Smokerlyzer video for workers who support young people who use tobacco. The Smokerlyzer device is a hand held monitor used to test the level of carbon monoxide (CO) in a person's body via a breath test. CO is an invisible gas created from the smoke of things like cigarettes or joints or even BBQs and car fumes. Too much CO in the blood deprives the body of oxygen and increases the risk of health problems like heart attack, blood clotting and stroke. Measuring levels of CO can assist in smoking cessation because when a person stops smoking their body gets rid of the excess CO and begins to repair itself.

Click here to WATCH NOW

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December 9, 2016

LITERATURE REVIEW OF PERFORMANCE AND IMAGE ENHANCING DRUGS

The UK-based Lifeline Project has published an article titled "Image and performance enhancing drugs (IPEDs): Literature Review".  The article includes provides a succinct overview of substances including steroids, nootropics (also known as "smart drugs") as well as botox and tanning drugs.  The article includes information on health effects, risks and suggestions for working with people who use this range of substances.  Some of the information is UK-specific, but there's still a lot of useful information for local workers.


Download "Image and Performance Enhancing Drugs: Literature Review"

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December 9, 2016

DON'T FORGET: DOVETAIL CONSUMER FEEDBACK SURVEY

Every year, Dovetail seeks feedback on our services. We've developed a short online survey designed to find out what you like about Dovetail and what we could do better. The results help us plan for the future, and gives you the chance to tell us what we should be focusing on. To help get you over the line, we are offering one lucky participant the opportunity to win an exclusive Dovetail prize pack.  The survey only takes a few minutes to complete, and will be open until the 3rd of February.


Go to the Dovetail Consumer Feedback Survey

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December 8, 2016

MISSION AUSTRALIA SURVEY 2016

The annual Mission Australia Youth Survey has been published. The survey seeks the views of young people aged 15 - 19, about issues of personal concern and issues facing Australia today. The top three personal concerns were stress 44.4%, school 37.8% and body image 30.6% and the top three issues that young people identified as facing Australia today were alcohol and drugs 28.7%, discrimination and equity 27% and mental health 20.6%. The percentage of young people identifying mental health as national concern had doubled in the last 6 years. 1 in 4 young people experienced discrimination in the past year and 1 in 2 witnessed someone being treated unfairly. Skills to cope with stress, mental health and alcohol and drug awareness programs and access to mental health and alcohol and drug services were some of the needs identified by young people.

Find out more survey results and download the report here.

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December 2, 2016

NEW PSYCHOACTIVE SUBSTANCE USE AMONG REGULAR PSYCHOSTIMULANT USERS

The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) has published a Drug Trends Bulletin titled "New psychoactive substance use among regular psychostimulant users in Australia 2010 - 2016."  The report looks at data from the annual EDRS (Ecstasy and Related Drugs Study), an annual study of regular drug users that looks at changes in price, purity and availability of a range of substances.  The bulletin found that across the years from 2010 - 2016 40.5% of regular psychostimulant users reported any use of a new psychoactive substance in the previous six months, with considerable fluctuations across this time.  By 2016, around 15% of participants had recently used either a phenethylamine (including drugs like 2C-B) or a tryptamine (including drugs like 5-MeO-DMT).


Go to "New psychoactive substance use among regular psychostimulant users in Australia 2010 - 2016"

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December 2, 2016

HEADS UP: IS YOUR WORKPLACE MENTALLY HEALTHY?

Our friends at YODAA in Victoria shared this, and we thought Dovetail subscribers might be interested too. Heads Up is a joint initiative from the Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance and Beyondblue. The website provides a range of interactive tools, practical advice, information and resources around all areas of workplace mental health. There is information about self-care and how to support others who may be having difficulties. The site also includes a section on training and resources with case studies, policy templates, downloadable booklets and fact sheets.


Go to Heads Up: Mentally Health Workplaces

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December 2, 2016

1800 RESPECT FRONTLINE WORKERS TOOLKIT

The National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service 1800RESPECT have developed a frontline workers toolkit. The toolkit consists of a range of practice information, videos and apps to assist community frontline workers in providing support to clients. There is technology and safety information and resources for GPs and health practitioners, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and communities, LGBTI communities, women from CALD backgrounds just to name a few. There is an introductory video which explains clearly how to use the resources in the toolkit.

Sign up and access the toolkit here

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