Tag Archives: Health

EDITORIAL: Alcoholism Within The Asian-American Community

Although the rate of alcoholism within the Asian American community is lower than the rate for the general public, it is still a significant problem, with 13.3 percent of Asian Americans classified as binge drinkers, and a 3.6 percent lifetime incidence of alcohol use disorders according to the NIH.  Problems exist for family members of those with alcohol dependence in the Asian American community.  Asian Americans with alcohol use disorders receive treatment at a far lower rate than other ethnic groups, according to the NIH.  There are several possible reasons for this.  Most Asian Americans strongly value family members and ties and don’t want to risk damaging these ties by bringing up topics like alcoholism. There is also a strong emphasis on saving face in most Asian cultures, which makes it hard to confront someone with alcohol addiction, especially if the sufferer is older. That is why it is especially difficult for many within the Asian American community to deal with family members who have substance abuse problems. We’ll look at some problems relatives of alcoholics face, what are some treatment options, and some of the resources available to help relatives of people with alcohol abuse problems.

Often, family members of alcoholics are afraid to confront their loved one.  Family members are afraid they might lose the relationship, as they do not want to be seen as causing trouble within the family, or they don’t see the harm in protecting and rescuing their loved one time and time again even though it allows their loved one to avoid facing the consequences of alcohol dependency.  There are several possible solutions to these problems.   If family members are afraid of losing the relationship with their loved one suffering from alcohol dependence, they can practice compassion while setting boundaries.   This means being able to say “No” and not financially supporting their family member while they suffer from alcohol problems.  Another problem family members face when confronting a loved one suffering from alcohol issues is the fear that they will be singled out and criticized within their family if they confront their loved one about his or her alcohol problem.  This can be counteracted by discussing the problem with other family members, building support for action, and possibly staging an intervention.  A lot of times, family members who rescue their loved one time and time again, which can be problematic as it allows people suffering from alcohol dependence to continue in their path without facing responsibility for their actions.   The solution is for concerned family members to stand  their ground and be prepared to lose the relationship temporarily.  An intervention or other strong action may be necessary., and  professional guidance may be needed. Overall, alcoholism  creates a difficult situation for families who struggle with loving a person but not their disease.

There are many treatment options that may be engaged for someone suffering from alcohol dependence. Treatment may involve a brief intervention, counseling, an outpatient program, or a residential inpatient stay.  Detoxification at an inpatient treatment center combined with treatment with drugs might be necessary.  Sedatives are sometimes necessary to control tremors and shaking and other symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.  Drugs such as naltrexone are often used to remove the pleasurable sensations alcoholics get from drinking.  Family therapy is also sometimes used to help the entire family cope with the problem.

In addition to professional counseling services, there are also several non-profit organizations that help and support family members who have alcoholics in their families.   Al-Anon and Alateen are two good support groups for family members of alcoholics, as is ODASA, an Asian American Recovery Services program.

Here is more information about ODASA.

Some websites with good information about alcoholism are listed below.

http://www.al-anon.alateen.org/dealing-with-the-elephant-in-the-roomalcoholism

http://psychcentral.com/lib/when-family-members-protect-alcoholics/0002847

http://www.hazelden.org/web/public/hff80302.page

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/alcoholism/DS00340/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs

ANNOUNCEMENT: 2014 Get Healthy Community Implementation Funding

The Get Healthy Community Implementation Funding supports the implementation of the Strategies for Improving Food & Physical Activity Environments in San Mateo County and is focused on funding neighborhoods, organizations and schools where there are limited, attractive opportunities for walking, biking, or using public transit and/or healthy food options.
Click the image below to visit the Get Healthy San Mateo County website, where you can learn more about Get Healthy Community Implementation Funding, download an application packet, and to find ideas on projects to increase access to healthy food and beverages, increase everyday physical activity, and much more.
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The application deadline is Friday, October 4, 2013 at 5:00PM!

 

ANNOUNCEMENT: Health Coverage Enrollment Fair October 2013

On January 14, 2014, most people will be required by law to have health insurance.

Covered California can help you determine if you are eligible for Medi-Cal, tax credits, or reduced cost health coverage plans.

WHEN: Saturday, October 12, 2013 from 9:00AM-4:00PM
WHERE: San Mateo Medical Center, Seton Medical Office Center, Human Services Agency
WHO: San Mateo County residents, individuals who need income or financial support,US citizens or residents

Click on the images below to download the PDF.

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NEWS: October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month

In 2011, President Obama issued the first-ever Presidential Proclamation designating October as National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. The tradition will continue in 2013, as parents, youth, schools, businesses, and community leaders across the country join in this month long observance of the role that substance abuse prevention plays in promoting safe and healthy communities.

Click the image below to view the full PDF brochure.

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ANNOUNCEMENT: API Health Parity Coalition Meeting September 5, 2013

*****API Health Parity Coalition Meeting****

Thursday, September 5, 2013, 3:30-5p 

Chinatown Child Development Center, 720 Sacramento St, SF

*Welcome & Introductions

Led by APIHPC Co-Chairs Judy Young & Christina Shea

*Mental Health Project Updates

Led by APIHPC Coordinators Heidi Tuason & Natalie Ah Soon

*Digital Stories Screening & Discussion

Led by APIHPC Coordinator Heidi Tuason 

Please RSVP by Tuesday Sept 3 to apihpc@gmail.com.

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*****WHAT IS DIGITAL STORYTELLING?***** 

Digital Storytelling is a creative and innovative method of participatory practice that engages ordinary people to use digital tools (still & moving pictures, music, sound, text, and narrative voice) in an expressive way to tell their stories in short 3-5 minute films.

 API Health Parity Coalition, in partnership with the Center for Digital Storytelling, conducted intensive 3-day workshops that included reflective writing, shared group story circles, group affirmation and feedback, guided reflection and script writing, audio recording of the storytellers’ voice, video editing learning (even for people with limited computer skills), and assisted digital story crafting and refining. 

API Health Parity Coalition hopes to use these stories about mental wellness for community education, anti-stigma campaigns, and advocacy to policymakers/funders.

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The Asian & Pacific Islander Health Parity Coalition is a coalition of 30+ agencies in San Francisco that serve API communities. They envision healthy Asian & Pacific Islander (API) communities in San Francisco. Their mission is to achieve health parity for San Francisco’s Asian & Pacific Islander communities by identifying and addressing health and healthcare issues.

Click the image below to download the PDF flier.

API Digital Stories