Tuesday, 3 April 2007
BRAIN INJURY PLUS ADDICTIONS /4/2/07 (3/30/07)
There's yet another criminal in the news-- this time in England-- using the brain injury defense for what he done. At least this time, William McHenry is admitting to stealing pocketbooks from library patrons AND getting help for a drinking problem. McHenry has been sober since February [hats off to him for that!] and lists his alcohol addiction as the motivation for stealing. It costs money to drink and that is that.
The development [or sometimes exacerbation] of addiction is common sequelae to a traumatic brain injury. McHenry got his from his house ceiling falling upon his head back in 2005. I wish him the best of luck as he is taking responsibility for what he done and is getting treatment for his alcoholic addiction.
People with traumatic brain injuries should not drink or use illicit drugs at all. Seems that the injury itself lends to addictive behaviors. I think as research is done in addictions treatment, it may very well dawn on someone that here is a population of underserved potential customers. Yes, folks with t.b.i. need education in things like addiction and doctors need education in things like t.b.i. and pain management.
Unfortunately, the classic classroom approach to addictions treatment is doomed for failure with t.b.i.-ers. So those who wish to run such programs will have to quit the cookie cutter approach if they want some stats showing that treatment can work.
Addictions treatment right now is rather hideous on the whole. The often touted un-success rate is an indictment against such treatment rather than an indication of any 'truth' to the current party line excuse "relapse is part of recovery." The idea that especially vulnerable populations-- such as t.b.i.-ers and those folks who have been labeled as mentally ill plus addicts-- are getting especially disaster-prone results out of addictions treatment should be serving as a wake-up call. Real people are dieing. We are not a bunch of statistics. With the money poured into the addictions treatment industry, it's about time that the industry be held accountable for some real results.
At any rate, I certainly wish William McHenry the very best in his endeavors to turn his life around.
sapphoq healing tbi