HFO Logo

February 25, 2014

New EBook on Substance Abuse Across the Lifespan: A Biopsychosocial Perspective Added to HealthForumOnline's Continuing Education Library for Mental Health Professionals

HealthForumOnline's (HFO) new online continuing education (CE) course, Substance Abuse Across the Lifespan: A Biopsychosocial Perspective, is anchored in the biopsychosocial approach, but this EBook for mental health professionals extends beyond this model to present a lifespan approach to the prevention and treatment of substance abuse. HFO offers over 90 online CE courses for mental health professionals that are fast, convenient and especially cost-effective - with free ongoing access to course updates beyond completion of the CE activity.

Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) February 25, 2014 –HealthForumOnline (HFO), a nationally-approved (APA, ASWB, NBCC, CA-BBS) provider of online continuing education (CE) is pleased to announce a new CE format and activity entitled, Substance Abuse Across the Lifespan: A Biopsychosocial Perspective, to its extensive online CE resource library for psychologists, social workers, counselors, and other allied healthcare professionals. This EBook is a new delivery format for HFO who is providing the associated continuing education (CE) materials (e.g., online access to the post-test, completion certificate) in connection with the EBook available for purchase directly from BVT Publishing.

Substance use and abuse is a public health epidemic impacting our families, friends, schools, and communities. Although the costs of cancer and diabetes are at record-breaking numbers, $157 billion dollars and $131.7 billion dollars respectively, the cost of substance abuse far surpasses both diseases combined at about $600 billion dollars annually.1 Over 3 million individuals 12 and over used an illicit drug for the first time within the past 12 months, at a rate of approximately 8,000 new users a day.2 Given these statistics, all mental health professionals will inevitably encounter clients impacted by this epidemic. Even providers who do not consider this their area of expertise must therefore be clinically prepared.

Emerging evidence has shed light on the important role developmental stage plays in the substance abuse process.3-4 This online book is designed to introduce mental health professionals to the fundamental biopsychosocial concepts of chemical dependency across the lifespan by offering a theory- and evidence-based overview of the concept of addiction, the history of addiction treatment, basic types of drugs and their distinct effects, and implications for treatment planning and delivery with an emphasis on important risk factors and substance abuse problems prevalent at each stage of development. 

After completing this CE activity, psychologists, social workers, counselors, and allied health professionals will understand the fundamental concepts of chemical dependency and the contribution of pharmacokinetics (i.e., absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination) and of pharmacodynamics (i.e., mechanism and site of action) in the initiation, development, and maintenance chemical abuse. In addition, an understanding of the fundamental types of addictive substances and their particular effects, as well as how various substances influence decisions about treatment will be presented. Lastly, relevant issues regarding diversity, social economic status, developmental age, and gender are discussed.

  1. Executive Office of the President (2004). Office of National Drug Control Policy. The Economic Costs of Drug Abuse in the United States, 1992-2002.
  2. Swendsen, J., Burstein, M., Case, B., Conway, K., Dierker, L., He, J., & Merikangas, K. R. (2012). The use and abuse of alcohol and illicit drugs in US adolescents: Results from the National Comorbidity Survey–Adolescent Supplement. Archives of General Psychiatry, 69(4), 390–398.
  3. Kandel, D. B., Yamaguchi, K., & Chen, K. (1992).  Stages of progression in drug involvement from adolescence to adulthood:  Further evidence for the gateway theory.  Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 53(5), 447-458.
  4. 4. Kessler, R.C., Berglund, P., Demler, O., Jin, R., Merikangas, K.R., & Walters, E.E. (2005). Lifetime Prevalence and Age-of-Onset Distributions of DSM-IV Disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication. Archives of General Psychiatry, 62, 593-602.