Drug Addiction: Disease or Habit?
When people hear the words drug addict, these words have negative connotations and stigmas attached to them. People visualize a person who does not care about anything, including family, work, or commitments, except for obtaining money to buy drugs to get high. However, there are many people who are drug addicts that maintain a normal, functional life. Most people who are drug addicts would give anything to kick the habit; they do not enjoy the high anymore. The problem is, they can’t. Addiction, defined by Webster, is a compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal. So, if the addicts want to stop, why can’t they? Is drug addiction a disease or habit? Drug dependency takes a long course from action to habits to compulsion.
The personal effects of prescription drugs is a topic that hits home for me. I have had many friends lose their lives due to prescription drugs, literally and figuratively. Some were thrill-seekers, some just curious; some tried drugs because their friends used, or they wanted to be perceived as cool. Even more susceptible, though, are the many people who use drugs in order to cope with unpleasant emotions and the difficulties of life. They see drug usage as a way to escape their problems, but in all reality, the use of drugs does nothing but make their problems worse or even create new ones. Whether it be for the thrill or distraction, one thing is clear: no one plans on being a drug addict; it takes time. A person will start using the drug of his or her choice for a temporary fix, and before long, they are using more and more of that drug as well as experimenting with different types of other drugs. So, by the time they realize they have a problem, the user has lost his or her ability to control the drug use; they can’t quit. If a person using drugs wants to stop, but can’t, addiction has to be more than just...
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