Drug Addiction and Greenhaven Press Essay

Submitted By miniscule240
Words: 1521
Pages: 7

Addiction : choice or disease?
Should the cause of addiction rely on people's actions? These days, drugs can be found everywhere, and it may seem like everyone's doing them. Lots of people are tempted by the excitement or escape that drugs seem to offer. But learning the facts about drugs can help one see the risks of chasing this excitement or escape. Several people argue whether drug addiction is a disease or a choice. Discussing this argument in hopes to have a better understanding as to why this topic is so controversial. For those on the other side of the argument they claim just the opposite. According to a source on the Internet entitled "Saint Jude Retreat House", alcoholism and drug addiction are not diseases because those types of behaviors can be avoided and there is help available to change these behaviors.To call addiction a disease and not a choice, evidence will need to show the flaws in calling addiction a choice, show how drugs of abuse work, how addiction fits into the disease model, identify what organ is primarily affected, and be able to recognize what the symptoms of drug addiction are. There are some very educated individuals who believe that addition is a behavior and that behaviors are a result of choices. According to Gene Heyman, a Harvard psychologist, drug addiction is a choice, not a disease. In his book, Addiction: A Disorder of Choice, Heyman states that "addiction is not a disease and that it is a pattern of persistent but optional self-destructive behaviors"(2009). Although it has been found true that drug and alcohol dependency can be passed down through hereditary there is no concrete evidence that proves that this is a disease. Addiction is a choice not a disease because there are several decisions that lead to addiction, people are to blame, and their actions affect those surrounding them.
Addiction is a compulsive need for the use of a habit-forming substance (as heroin, nicotine, alcohol or other drugs). Drug and alcohol addiction is a very serious and widespread problem in America, and across the globe. Drug addiction is a constant craving, seeking, and using of a substance, despite the negative consequences. Someone who is addicted or hooked psychologically believes that they cannot function without this substance in their bodies. And for addicts, "addiction is a crutch word that makes it easier for humans to dismiss their personal responsibility for choices"(Netherton). Addiction begins so easily and takes over without any warning. It can begin with a bad day, peer pressure, consequence, or even easier as a teen trying to find a way to fit in within their pre-adult world. One pill or one hit is all it takes. The addict finds that the drugs offer temporary relief, so they continue to abuse them. When the person uses the drugs it seems to handle their immediate problem. With continued use of the drug, the body’s ability to produce certain chemicals is diminished because these chemicals are replaced by the drug. The body uses the drug as a substitute for it’s own natural chemicals.When drug use becomes more frequent, it is considered drug abuse. Once an individual’s drug abuse can no longer be controlled, and they are using the drug to get through everyday life, it becomes an addiction. Christina states that, "there seems to be as many addiction treatment methods as there are types of addictions, and no one approach will cure all addicts"(Fisanick). A person on drugs has an altered way of thinking, behaving, and perceiving. There are treatment facilities all over the world dedicated to help those suffering with drug addictions. All though there are drugs to help reduce cravings and discourage drug use, there is no drug that can stop a drug addiction.
People get high and drink because they want to and if they are not careful they can become an addict. Drug addiction is the most common form of addiction. People use certain drugs and generally overusing it will cause a physical and