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What’s in a word? Some words in our everyday lexicon hold a deeper, inexplicable meaning beyond their dictionary definition and become embedded in the way we think, feel, and act. “Stigma” is such a word that evokes a certain reaction when it is used. In general, it means a mark or a sign, usually of disapproval. In the context of mental illness or addiction, “stigma” can manifest itself in many ways.Externally, those with mental or substance use disorders often experience stereotyping, negative attitudes, and discrimination from the people around them, including their communities, families, and friends. Internally, they may start to believe these stereotypes and negative attitudes about themselves, harming their self-esteem and their chance for recovery.
Synthetic cannabinoids—also known as synthetic or fake marijuana—have been in the news a lot lately. Communities are growing increasingly concerned about the availability and use of these products, in part because they are easily available—sometimes without age restrictions. They can also be difficult to detect in drug tests because new synthetic cannabinoids are being produced constantly.
For the last 25 years, communities and individuals across the country have joined together in September to observe SAMHSA's National Recovery Month (Recovery Month). This observance has provided an opportunity to celebrate the journey and achievements of the millions of Americans who are in recovery from a mental and/or substance use disorder. Over the last quarter-century, community Recovery Month events across the country have brought people together to share real life experiences about the power of recovery.
When a pregnant woman drinks alcohol, so does her baby. For the last 15 years, on September 9th at 9:09, communities across the country have come together to observe Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Day. This day and time were chosen so that on the 9th minute of the 9th hour of the 9th day of the 9th month of the year, the world would remember that women should not drink during the nine months of pregnancy.The 15th annual observance of FASD Awareness Day is an opportune time to highlight the importance of addressing FASD prevention and intervention in behavioral health settings.