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Treatment Plans

Substance Addictions

Substance Use Disorders are characterized by the continued use of a substance despite significant related problems. These are complex conditions from which it is difficult to get out without specialized and ongoing help. 

Dr. Stefano Pallanti's Istituto di Neuroscienze offers advanced and highly effective therapeutic programs to get out of the substance use loop.

Characteristics of Substance Addictions

The fundamental characteristic of a Substance Use Disorder is a set of cognitive, behavioral, and physiological symptoms that indicate that a person continues to use a substance despite significant problems related to it. The use of all substances except caffeine is a classified disorder in the DSM-5.

The diagnosis of the disorder is based on the following elements:

  • poor control over the substance;

  • social repercussions;

  • risky use;

  • pharmacological criteria (tolerance, withdrawal).

Tolerance is indicated by the need for a significantly higher dose of the substance to achieve the desired effect, or significantly lower effects when the dose taken is constant.

Withdrawal is a syndrome that occurs in individuals with prolonged and marked substance use when the blood or tissue concentration of a substance decreases.

The severity of a substance use disorder is indicated from mild to severe:

  • mild when two to three symptoms are present;

  • moderate when four or five symptoms are present;

  • severe when six or seven symptoms are present.

(translated and adapted from the book Psichiatria e Salute Comportamentale, Stefano Pallanti)

Dr. Stefano Pallanti's Books

Psichiatria e Salute Comportamentale

Psichiatria e Salute Comportamentale is a groundbreaking volume on psychiatry that crosses the boundaries of current classification systems to extend coverage to the latest international research evidence, from neuroscience to pharmacology.

Psichiatria Elementare: Oltre il DSM-5

This volume refers to the fifth version of the most widely used classification system in psychiatry: the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), while intending to transcend its boundaries to extend beyond its treatment.

Treatment of Substance Addictions

Dr. Stefano Pallanti ― an expert neuroscientist, founder of the Istituto di Neuroscienze in Florence and director of the Neuroscience Center for Health at the Zucchi Wellness Clinic in Monza ― is an innovator in the treatment of addictions, among the first to apply Neuromodulation Therapies for the treatment of these disorders.

The effective treatment of addiction requires a holistic approach involving several disciplines to ensure maximum success. This type of approach to treatment integrates different treatment modalities, including Pharmacological Therapies, Neuromodulation Therapies, and Natural Therapies to effectively address all the challenges of addiction recovery.

Particularly useful in the treatment of addiction is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS): an innovative treatment option that involves targeted stimulation of brain regions involved in addiction through a magnetic field that can influence neuronal activity and plastic properties of the brain, "erasing" the addiction, whatever it is.

More specifically, in the treatment of addiction, TMS is able to strengthen the brain's inhibitory control, making areas involved in gratification less vulnerable to the attraction of substances of abuse of addictive behaviors. This innovative therapy represents a true revolution in the treatment of addictions and is also shown to help those who have been unable to break free from addiction through other treatment methods.

Neuromodulation therapies can also be easily combined with the use of scientifically based Natural Therapies, which can prove helpful in further supporting physical and mental health during recovery from addiction. These complementary treatment options can help reduce anxiety and depression, improve sleep, and promote better overall health.

Dr. Stefano Pallanti's Credentials

Dr. Stefano Pallanti is Editor in Chief of the scientific journal Archive of Behavioral Addiction and is Editorial Board Member of the scientific journal Journal of Addiction and Therapy.

Dr. Stefano Pallanti has given numerous lectures on substance addiction in important international congresses such as European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP), World Psychiatric Association (WPA), European Congress of Psychiatry (EPA), International Conference on Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation and Addiction Treatments.

Dr. Pallanti is Advisor of GIA Miami: a center for Mental Health and Addiction Treatment.