1. Challenges to smoking cessation among patients with substance use disorder seen at NAMS
This study investigated the perceived challenges to smoking cessation among individuals who smoked, self-reported substance use addictions (i.e. alcohol and/or drugs), and had sought treatment at NAMS. The study also aimed to explore the association between cigarette smoking and substance use progression and to identify if smoking acted as a gateway drug to subsequent use of hard drugs (e.g., Heroin, Cannabis etc.). Through the study findings, it is hoped to improvise or re-design the existing smoking cessation programs at NAMS and to address perceived challenges to smoking cessation among substance using patients.
2. Internet addiction, gaming addiction, and smartphone addiction: Prevalence, comorbidities, and scale validation
In view that Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD) and its related conditions such as Internet Addiction (IA) and Smartphone Addiction (SA) are gaining attention globally and in Asia, this collaborative study with James Cook University (JCU) Singapore, aims to evaluate the psychometric properties of the tools used to measure the prevalence of IGD and its related conditions in Singapore, and examine the inter-relationships between IGD and other psychiatric comorbidities, namely Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, depression, and anxiety symptoms. Lastly, this study also aims to establish the cut-offs for Internet Gaming Disorder Test (IGDT-10), making it a clinical relevant tool to identify gamers-at-risk of IGD as well as to establish the need for early interventions.
3. Patient perspectives on NAMS inpatient treatment programme: A qualitative study
This is a qualitative study that aimed to elicit perspectives from patients who have attended the NAMS inpatient programme on (1) awareness of NAMS, (2) experiences before, during, and after the programme, and (3) barriers in seeking and during treatment. It is hoped this study would provide deeper understanding and information to improve the NAMS inpatient programme.
4. Impact of perceived and self-stigma on treatment seeking and retention behaviours
This study was initiated to examine the impact of perceived social stigma and self-stigma on treatment seeking decisions and treatment retention behaviours among study participants. The main aim was to develop an understanding on the constructs of perceived and self-stigma experiences among patients with substance use addiction (i.e. alcohol or drugs) who were seeking treatment at NAMS. Through the study findings, it is hoped to improve patients’ treatment adherence, retention and mental health outcomes. The study also hopes to develop strategies and interventions to address and reduce stigma experiences among patients seeking treatment at NAMS.
5. Microbiome profiling of patients with heroin dependence before and after detoxification treatment
This is a novel and collaborative study with the Asian Microbiome Library (AMiLi) to investigate the gut microbiome profile of patients who are dependent on heroin, and to observe how the gut microbiome profile changes during the course of inpatient detoxification. Additionally, the study also aims to investigate the relationship of the gut microbiome profile amongst smokers, patients who are dependent on heroin, and healthy individuals.
6. Single-session attentional bias assessment and modification for individuals with addictive disorders
This study seeks to further refine the methods of a previously completed feasibility study where NAMS inpatients in their rehabilitation phase of treatment were administered a mobile-based attention bias assessment and modification task. The aim of this study was to determine whether baseline attentional biases in individuals with opioid and alcohol use disorders could be more accurately detected (using a new computational method), and subsequently modified using a co-designed attentional bias modification intervention.