Basic Information

addiction dictionary entry

When we hear the word "addiction", many images come to our mind. We see the falling down drunk. We see a woman who sells her body in exchange for a "fix." We remember a permanently disabled teen in a wheelchair because of a drunk-driving accident. We read about a famous entertainer who died, and another whose sensational sex scandals are splashed across the tabloids. Most of us know a friend or family member, whose lives are affected by addiction. We all know that addiction is a serious problem. But behind that widely held agreement are many disagreements and questions. How big are addiction problems exactly? How does addiction differ from experimentation, misbehavior, and bad habits? What causes addiction? How does one overcome it? How successful is addiction treatment? How should society respond to individuals with addiction? What should governments do about addiction? Is addiction mostly a modern problem? Is the addiction problem getting worse?

This article will not resolve all the passionate debates surrounding these questions. With so much controversy and differences of opinion, it is often difficult to separate fact from opinion, and myth from reality. Therefore, our goal is more modest: To help you, the reader, gain a better understanding of this complex issue so that you can form your own opinions about addiction. In this way, if you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction problem, you can make an informed decision about what to do about it.


Latest News
Prescription Painkiller Abuse Rate Down, But Many Are Addicted: Study
Americans Concerned About Prescription Painkiller Addiction
Cigarettes May Sabotage Alcoholics' Recovery
Some More Vulnerable to Nicotine Addiction Than Others: Study
8 of 10 People in Addiction Treatment Smoke, Study Finds
10 Percent of U.S. Women Drink During Pregnancy: Study
Heavy Drinking Linked to Greater Risk for Alcohol-Related Cancers
Dentists Drill Patients for Drug Abuse Information
Some Sobering Stats on Kids and Drinking
Injuries Tied to Illegal Meth Labs on the Rise: CDC
Mixed Findings on Pot's Effect on the Developing Brain
One or Two Drinks a Day Might Boost Cancer Risk: Study
New York Latest State to Ban Powdered Alcohol
Florida Laws May Help Lower Abuse of Prescription Painkillers
Kids Exposed to Lots of Alcohol Ads While Watching Sports on TV
Tying the Knot May Mean Less Drinking for Young Adults
One-Third of People Believe Alcohol Is Heart-Healthy
Common Weight-Loss Surgery May Lower Tolerance for Alcohol
U.S. Medical Groups Join to Fight Prescription Painkiller Abuse
Jealousy Can Drive Some to Problem Drinking, Study Suggests
Well-Off, Active, Over 50? You May Be at Higher Risk for Problem Drinking
Meth, Coke Addiction May Affect Brains of Women More Than Men
Painkiller Overdoses Often Involve 'Pharmacy Shopping'
Who's Most Likely to Get Addicted to Their Narcotic Painkiller?
Many Doctors Underestimate Risks of Prescription Painkillers: Survey
Doctors Should Urge Against Pot Use During Pregnancy: Guidelines
'Friends and Family' OD-Reversal Kits Are Saving Addicts' Lives
More Young Children Exposed to Marijuana, Study Finds
Misuse of Stimulants May Begin Earlier Than Expected
Misuse of ADHD-Type Drugs Starts Long Before College: Study
Tougher Alcohol Laws for Adults May Also Lower Teen Drinking
A Billion Smokers, 240 Million Alcohol Abusers Worldwide: Study
Medical Pot-Painkiller Combo Isn't Always Recipe for Abuse
How Amphetamines, Cocaine Harm the Brain
CDC: Expanding EMS Naloxone Use Will Save Lives
'Tamper-Proof' Narcotic Painkiller May Be Curbing Abuse: Study
Recent Substance Abuse Found in Nearly One in 10 Workers
Health Tip: Too Much Alcohol Can Affect Muscle Mass
Substance Abuse Reported by About 1 in 10 American Workers
Higher Alcohol Taxes May Lead to Fewer Drunk-Driving Deaths: Study
One-Quarter of Narcotic Painkillers Misused, Study Shows
Synthetic Pot Linked to Kidney Injury
Health Tip: Don't Mix Meds and Alcohol
Powdered Alcohol Approved by U.S. Regulators
Breath Test for Illegal Drugs Instead of Urine Analysis?
Painkiller-Addicted Babies a Growing U.S. Concern, Especially in Fla.
Cannabis Linked to Increased Risk of Cerebrovascular Events
Hispanics May Develop Alcoholic Liver Disease Earlier
Big Increase Seen in Babies Born Addicted to Narcotics
ADHD Linked to Earlier Use of Illicit Drugs in Teens: Study
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Basic Information
What is Addiction?What Causes Addiction?How Do You Get Addicted?Signs and Symptoms of AddictionTreatment for AddictionReferencesResourcesFrequentlly Asked Questions about Addiction
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