Author: Sara

Dr. Morris Interviewed about Nicotine’s Role in Treatment of Mentally Ill

On the website The Influence, Dr. Morris discusses the role tobacco use plays in the treatment of persons diagnosed with a mental illness. And let’s be clear, it’s not a good one.

“When you’re smoking, nicotine metabolizes the drugs quicker,” Dr. Morris explains, so higher doses [of medications to treat their illness] are often required. When pressed about the claim that tobacco use helps people to “self-medicate,” he pointed out that “Nicotine does correct for some of the deficits that some individuals with mental illness have, but only for about five minutes.”

Making the disadvantages of smoking outweigh the short-term advantages.

To read the full article, go to The Influence’s website here.

Newsletter 2016 – March/April – Occupational Wellness



Susan Young, Research Director

For the past few months, my 4th grader has been experiencing a small, but significant, ‘wellness deficit’ when it comes to her primary occupation, school. I blame homework.
Tom Crowley, my colleague of 26 years and my first academic mentor at the University of Colorado, recently retired after more than 40 years of work dedicated to researching and treating addictions and associated psychiatric conditions. He is an icon in the substance abuse field, who has been awarded many millions in research dollars and has published over 150 peer-reviewed papers.

However, these honors and accomplishments were not what shined brightest as I attended several events celebrating his amazing career. Instead, what seemed most impressive was the legacy he has left behind. I am not referring only to the multiple residential and outpatient treatment programs he built or to the Division of Substance Dependence, which he established in a time when addiction was viewed more as a socially-driven, rather than biologically-driven, disease.

California Close to Raising Legal Age for Purchasing Tobacco

The California Senate voted to raise the legal age for purchasing tobacco products from 18 to 21. If governor Gerry Brown signs the bill, it would become the second state (after Hawaii) to enact this measure state-wide.

“The California Assembly approved the measure, which — in addition to raising the age limit — regulates electronic cigarettes the same as tobacco products, expands smoke-free areas, increases smoking bans and allows counties to levy higher taxes on cigarettes than the 87-cent per pack state tax.”

For more, see NPR’s article.

Dr. Morris Presenting in New York on Organizational Change in the Behavioral Health Setting

On Tuesday, March 15, Dr. Chad Morris will be presenting to the good people of Cooperstown, New York about the importance of prioritizing tobacco cessation in mental health and substance use disorder settings. The presentation is sponsored by St. Mary’s Hospital, Center for Health Programs and Promotion and Glens Falls Hospital in partnership of the Behavioral Health for Tobacco-Free Living initiative.

CDC Releases Report on Prevalence of Healthy Sleep for U.S. Adults

The latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) from the CDC is the “first published report to document state-based estimates of self-reported healthy sleep duration for all 50 states and the District of Columbia.”

The report states that “based on recent recommendations for healthy sleep duration, these findings suggest that, although almost two thirds of U.S. adults sleep more than or equal to 7 hours in a 24-hour period, an estimated 83.6 million U.S. adults sleep less than 7 hours. Therefore, clinicians might find routine discussion of sleep health with their patients as well as pursuit of explanations for poor sleep health an important component of providing health care.”

Click to view the report in its entirety.

BHWP Listed in CDC Best Practices User Guide for Tobacco Control

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the Health Equity in Tobacco Prevention and Control user guide to assist tobacco control staff and partners implement evidence-based best practices for populations facing health disparities. BHWP’s DIMENSIONS: Tobacco Free Toolkit for Healthcare Providers and its supplements are listed as educational resources for those providing services to individuals with behavioral health conditions or low socioeconomic status.

BHWP offers a variety of educational resources for tobacco control and tobacco cessation. Downloadable copies of all of our toolkits can be found here.

Newsletter 2016 – Jan/Feb – Intellectual Wellness



Susan Young, Research Director

This Christmas, I finally caved and bought each of my daughters a laptop. Though they have been begging for them for more than a year, my decision was mostly motivated by my irritation with sharing my own technology during weekends or road trips. Just as I feared, my girls have had their noses glued to those screens just about every spare moment since the holidays. This shouldn’t surprise me. Unlike most contemporary households, ours is devoid of an Xbox, PlayStation, or Nintendo console (though we do have a Wii somewhere, gathering dust). So their experience of playing Minecraft or Animal Jam (a favorite) on their OWN computers is like crack cocaine (or at least warm, double-fudge brownies).

Dr. Morris to Present at the North Carolina Breathe Easy Coalition Conference

We are proud to announce that BHWP’s Dr. Chad Morris will be presenting at the upcoming conference, “Building Partnerships to Promote Tobacco Free Living in the Behavioral Health Community” in Raleigh, North Carolina. The conference is hosted by the North Carolina Breathe Easy Coalition.

The conference will be held Tuesday, March 22 – Wednesday, March 23, 2016 at the Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley.

Please visit their website to access registration directly.