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Is Drug Addiction a Disease

Is Drug Addiction a Disease

Arizona currently has the 17th highest drug overdose mortality rate in the US. The consumption of illicit drugs and prescription medication for recreational purposes has risen over time, causing thousands of deaths each year.

However, amid police crackdowns, public criticism, and rehab recommendations, most people still don't understand the exact nature of drug addiction.

Is it a conscious, illogical choice or an uncontrollable affliction?

What is Drug Addiction?

Drug addiction refers to the failure to stop consuming a drug, even though it leads to physical and mental harm. It is like a substance use disorder in which people intensely focus on uncontrollable consumption of drugs to such a level that their daily functioning gets weakened. 

The psychological disorder is defined as any harmful deviation by the body from its normal state and is associated with specific symptoms. Moreover, it differs in nature from any physical wound.

This definition should make you wonder:

Is Drug Addiction a Disease?

The three leading organizations on drug use disorders, The National Institute on Drug Abuse, The National Institutes of Health, and The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, have all declared drug addiction a disease. 

This is because the human body is incapable of stopping the consumption of any drug without external assistance. Thus, it experiences harmful symptoms such as tremors and bloodshot eyes.

What are the Consequences of Drug Addiction?

If you are a drug addict, then your addiction will lead to changes in the means employed by your brain to respond to situations involving self-control, stress, and rewards. These changes are long-term and can continue even after you have stopped consuming drugs.

Is Drug Addiction a Choice?

If you compare the disease of addiction to heart disease, then you can understand why it is so evidently an uncontrollable sickness for those afflicted with it: 

  • Both heart disease and drug addiction impair the daily functioning of a body organ. If you suffer from heart disease, your heart gets affected, and if you are a drug addict, your brain functioning is impaired.
  • Both heart disease and drug addiction have a genetic component involved, which increases the likelihood of incurring them.
  • You need proper medical treatment for both heart disease and addiction to prevent further damage, even though both can be avoided to some extent by adopting healthy lifestyles.

Moreover, drug addiction is supplemented by nurture, along with nature.

Many critics of the nature argument purport that you can prevent drug addiction simply by not taking drugs, making consumption an apparent choice.

Their suggested Choice Theory of Addiction assumes that your thoughts have an impact on your actions and considers that environmental issues, like poverty, can increase the chances of drug use.

Irrespective of whether drug addiction is a disease or a choice, if you are suffering from drug addiction, you should immediately seek help from the finest rehab centers to prevent further harm.

What are the Treatments for Drug Addiction?

There are several different courses of treatment you can adopt to rid yourself of the disease.

These include medication, behavioral counseling, detoxification, long-term follow-up for relapse prevention, and AA for addiction treatment.

If you are suffering from drug addiction and wish to recover in the long term to lead a healthier, happier life, contact Alcohol Services for help getting clean and sober:

Phone: 844-454-5940

Our location: Phoenix, AZ


Is Drug Addiction a Disease