Drug Addiction Disease or Choice?

Topics: Addiction, Drug addiction, Substance abuse Pages: 6 (2162 words) Published: October 26, 2010
Check Point: Rough Draft of Research Paper
Research Writing / COM220
Adam Meehan
Madeline Chavez
October 13, 2010

Drug addiction, disease or choice, the National Institution of Drugs Association (NIDA) has determined Drug Addiction a chronic, relapsing brain disease while opposing views debate Drug Addiction as solely a choice controlled voluntarily? Drug addiction is now recognized as a chronic relapsing brain disease expressed in the form of compulsive behaviors. Hence, the estimated economic cost contributed to disease foundations is $181Billion a year? Could this be a loophole for obtaining funds and doesn’t this kind of money seem high to be contributed to a voluntarily poor decision? Weather you believe addiction to be a disease or a choice is to be seen. Many well respected professors and scientist claim addiction is a scapegoat behavior that has been incorrectly identified as a physical or mental illness, an addict is only a victim of bad science and misguided policy. NIDA has made ground-breaking discoveries about the brain and has revolutionized our understanding of drug abuse and drug addiction. Later to be defined is what the significant difference between abuse and addiction, which can ultimately change ones point of view. The following is a combination of research by medical institutions and well respected professional in the fields of science, along with two very interviews, with an ex drug addict turned counselor for a methadone treatment facility, an individual in active addiction, and a recovering addict. The experience, strength, and hopes of these professionals and the personal trauma had by each of these addicts is part of a message that should be heard by anyone ever touched by the disease of addiction in any way shape or form. Drug Addiction is a growing problem today and has caught the attention of many professionals these professionals have opposing views of the cause, some will say Drug addiction is a disease while others will claim it is a voluntary choice of poor decisions making. NIDA has determined that addiction is a disease. The big controversy is said to be in the difference of terminology. Before one can make the assessment weather addiction is a disease or choice they must first understand the difference between addiction and abuse.

What are the differences Between a Drug Abuser, and a Drug Addict? Many people assume that addiction is simply an overuse of drugs, and that the addict is just a drug user who chooses to use too much. But research has shown that addiction, unlike casual drug use, is no longer a matter of free choice. "Functionally you've moved into a different state, a state of compulsive drug use," says Alan Leshner, Ph.D., director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Drug use really isn’t a choice of morality. By interview with a counselor at a drug rehabilitation center “Drug addiction is a mental disorder with a physical allergy.” When an addict doesn’t use they become ill physically, muscles tighten, sweats and stomach pains, vomiting and many other flu like symptoms surface. Then the voice in the brain begins to talk to them and it is a vicious cycle of emotional stress. The abuser can use at parties and on special occasions. He or she may like to use when they chose, but if they do not use drugs they do not have a mental relapse or physical discomforts. When an addict puts down the drug they are not cured, they are only sober. For this reason many addicts must undergo either a 12 step program or have the support of a drug counselor. An abuser can stop using at any given time and never pick up again. The National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine, the American Psychiatric...
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