Over view of Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse is a major problem and this problem is growing day by day.  Increasing rates of substance abuse has increased burden on public health especially in lower and middle income countries like Pakistan. Evidence suggests that misuse of legal and illicit drugs is increasing 7 % annually in Pakistani population especially in younger population.

PILL Contribution

Pakistan Institute of Living & Learning (PILL) has started awareness programs for community regarding risk and harm reduction of substance abuse. PILL has also took initiative for trainings and workshops of students, teachers and health professional to enhance their knowledge, understanding and expertise for treatment of people with substance abuse.

Recent Initiatives

Workshop on Addictive Behavior in Global Perspective

The Pakistan Institute of Living and Learning organized a one-day workshop on Additive Behavior in the Global Perspective at the Centre for Clinical Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore.

Dr. Iqbal Naeem, consultant psychiatrist and SAS trainer, was specially invited from the UK as the key resource person for the workshop and he delivered a presentation that focused on addictive behavior with a focus on the commonalities in the behaviors of people with substance abuse.










Ms. Farhat-ul-ain, health psychologist, delivered a presentation on substance misuse and abuse during the perinatal stage of delivery. She explained what diseases and disorders the misuse of drugs and alcohol during the perinatal stage of delivery could cause to the baby.

Mr. Usman, research assistant, delivered a presentation on the link between substance abuse and self-harm.

Notable guests included the vice chancellor of the University of the Punjab, Dr Zaffar Mueen Nasar, and director of the PU’s Centre for Clinical Psychology, Prof Dr. Rukhsana Kausar.







MOU with Umeed-e-Nisa Centre

Pakistan institute of living and learning has recently signed an MOU with Umeed-e-Nisa Centre for the wellbeing of community and improved quality of Life of people with Substance use disorder. Umeed-e-Nisa center is a treatment and rehabilitation center who provides free treatment services to children, women and to deserving men who cannot afford for their treatment.









Upcoming Projects


CAMIAB is a Project aims to develop culturally sensitive psychological interventions for the treatment and relapse prevention of people diagnosed with substance use disorder. Motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioral therapy has been found to be effective in reducing relapse in people with substance use disorder. This project aims to assess the efficacy of a culturally adapted evidence based motivational interviewing and CBT therapeutic interventions for treatment and relapse prevention of people with substance misuse in Pakistan.


EMDR and Substance Use Disorder

Research suggests that most of the people with substance use disorder had some type of traumatic experiences in their life.  EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a form of psychotherapy to help people heal their disturbing or traumatic life experiences. EMDR was originally developed for treatment of stress but it is also found to be effective for treatment of substance or alcohol abuse. The objective of this study is to check the feasibility of EMDR for better outcomes of recovery from addiction and relapse prevention.


Upcoming Workshops on Substance Abuse

  • Addiction treatment, recovery & relapse prevention
  • Workshop on Primary Care in Addiction for Physician, Psychiatrists and Postgraduate Students
  • Ethics in Drug Addiction Practices
  • Dual Diagnosis and Drug Addiction
  • EMDR use in treatment of Substance Abuse