Addiction Essay

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Danny Banuelos
AOD-1/Section 2000

FOUR MODELS/THEORIES OF ADDICTION AND COMPARISON OF TWO MODEL/THEORIES

This essay will explain four models/theories of addiction that we have studied this semester. The first model I will discuss is the Addictive Disease Model. This model is also known as the Medical Model. This model ascertains that the disease of addiction is chronic, progressive, incurable, and potentially fatal. There are numerous facets to this model which include the idea that this disease is a genetic irregularity in our brain chemistry and anatomy. When a drug of choice is used, this irregularity is activated and addiction is set in motion. There are numerous indicators characterized by this disease model. Compulsive drug use and the overwhelming need to continue using despite the appearance of problems. Loss of control and the inability to stop use. Continued use, even if serious mental or physical problems arise. Repeated attempts to stop using, only to relapse again and gain. The disease of addiction is incurable. Treatment and abstinence may be your only choice if you want to live a productive life.
The Behavioral/Environmental Model states the significance of environmental factors can change brain chemistry. Numerous factor such as physical and emotional stress, abuse, and anger during childhood can cause people to look to drugs as a solution to block out horrible situations that occurred in their past. Nutritional deficiencies can also change or alter a person’s brain chemistry and function, making a person vulnerable to the disease of addiction. This model indicates six levels of use and progression of the disease of addiction which includes abstinence, experimentation, social/recreational use, habituation, abuse and finally addiction. The Academic Model or Diathesis-Stress Model show that addiction happens when the body adapts to the toxic effects of drug use at a biochemical and cellular level. This process is known as allostasis. This process and theory was first introduced by C.K. Himmelsbach in 1941. This theory is based on the idea that psychoactive drugs disrupt the homeostasis of the body and most notably the brain. Excessive drug use can cause the brain and the body to change and adapt as it protects itself. This rebalance or change in the body can lead to a long term change in the bodies chemistry and reinforce addiction. There are four physiological indicators that support this process.(1) Tolerance, the body becomes used to the effect of the drug, thus needing larger and larger quantities of the drug.(2) Tissue Dependence, the body’s cells begin to change because of excessive use causing the body to need more of the drug to function. Withdrawal Syndrome, physical problems or symptoms appear when drug use is stopped.…