Issues of substance abuse.
Article Type: Book review
Subject: Books (Book reviews)
Author: Sharma, Manoj
Pub Date: 12/01/2009
Publication: Name: Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education Publisher: American Alcohol & Drug Information Foundation Audience: Academic; Professional Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Psychology and mental health; Social sciences Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2009 American Alcohol & Drug Information Foundation ISSN: 0090-1482
Issue: Date: Dec, 2009 Source Volume: 53 Source Issue: 3
Topic: NamedWork: Substance Use and Abuse. Exploring Alcohol and Drug Issues (Nonfiction work)
Persons: Reviewee: Mignon, S. I; Faiia, M. M; Myers, P. L; Rubington, E.
Accession Number: 218817579
Full Text: Mignon, S. I., Faiia, M. M., Myers, P. L., & Rubington, E. (2009).

Substance use and abuse. Exploring alcohol and drug issues.

Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc.

[Hardcover ISBN 978-1-58826-620-0; $75.00]

[Paperback ISBN 978-1-58826-645-3; $32.50]

There are several textbooks available in the area of substance abuse. This one is a new addition to these textbooks. The book explores the influence of alcohol and drugs on individuals, families, and the society. The book combines both a theoretical perspective and a practical viewpoint. In the preface the authors claim that the book would stimulate broad thinking around the issues of substance use and abuse. The book does not have chapter objectives like a typical textbook which could have facilitated learning, but each chapter ends with a conclusion section which will be helpful for the readers. The book also has photographs and box items in each chapter that discuss interesting and relevant issues pertaining to the chapter. These tend to break the monotony of lengthy discussions.

The book is divided into four parts with 14 chapters. The first chapter is an introduction where the authors have discussed the development of narcotic use, marijuana use, hallucinogen use, cocaine use, and amphetamine use. The chapter also presents information on drug classification and scheduling and concludes with the drug legalization debate.

The first part of the book is called, Alcohol, drugs, and society: an overview. This part has two chapters. The first chapter is about alcohol and alcoholism. It discusses the effects of alcohol, defines alcoholism, and presents the alcohol consumption patterns in the United States. It also includes a discussion on the epidemiology of drinking problems and the medical consequences of alcoholism. The chapter concludes with a discussion on contemporary trends in alcohol use, abuse, and addiction. The second chapter in the first part is about drugs and drug addiction. The chapter presents categories of drugs, drug interactions, and the nomenclature of drugs. It also discusses epidemiology of drugs, the role of set, settings, and expectations on drug use, and the issue of dual diagnosis. The introductory coverage on alcohol and drugs is good.

The second part is about patterns of substance use within diverse populations. It has five chapters and covers five populations: children and adolescents, women, people of different races, people of different sexual identities (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender), and the elderly. It would have been useful to include a chapter on low income and homeless people. Each chapter starts with a historical perspective, discusses issues of substance abuse in that population and concludes with treatment and prevention aspects.

The third part pertains to social consequences of substance use and abuse and has three chapters. The first chapter is about college drinking. This chapter discusses binge drinking and issues of peer control and living arrangements. The second chapter is about alcohol, drugs and the family and discusses the effects of alcoholism and drug addiction on spouses and children. Issues of parenting, children of alcoholics and addicts, and family violence have been thoroughly addressed. The final chapter in this part is about a sociological examination of the links between alcohol, drugs, and crime. Studies that link alcohol, marijuana, heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and ecstasy with crime have been presented. The chapter concludes with a discussion on the response of criminal justice system with drugs.

The final part of the book is about diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and policy implications. This part has three chapters. The first chapter is about screening, assessment, and diagnosis of alcohol and drug problems. This chapter presents a discussion on screening instruments and aspects of physical examination and laboratory tests for assessment and diagnosis of alcohol and drug problems. The second chapter is about treatment and recovery. The chapter discusses benefits of treatment and different modalities of treatment. The final chapter is about policy, prevention and practice. This chapter discusses policy implications and underscores the importance of prevention. At the end a glossary of terms and a set of discussion questions are presented which would be of special benefit to students using this book

On the whole, this book is easy to read and provides good examples to illustrate various issues related to substance use and abuse. Some of the pedagogical features such as use of box items, glossary, discussion questions, and conclusion section at the end of each chapter make it especially useful for students. It would be a helpful book for graduate students taking advanced courses in the area of substance use and abuse.

Review by Manoj Sharma, University of Cincinnati
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2009 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.