The Causes of Drug Addiction

1430 WordsFeb 8, 20116 Pages
The Causes of Drug Addiction What causes a man to risk losing his family or worse his freedom for the ability to get high? What causes a parent to risk not only their own health by smoking but also the health of their children? The answer is addiction. Alan I. Leshner, PhD states that the “essence of addiction [is an] uncontrollable, compulsive drug seeking and use, even in the face of negative health and social consequences.” He goes on to say, “This is the crux of how many professional organizations all define addiction, and how we all should use the term. It is really only this expression of addiction - uncontrollable, compulsive craving, seeking and use of drugs - that matters to the addict and to his or her family, and that should…show more content…
Or a drug addict in recovery who happens to pass the alley where he used to get high and he is over come with the need and desire to find a fix. The environmental cues evoke memories that cause compulsive reactions to occur without conscious knowledge of the participant. A third theory proposes that “habit formation and maintenance are two essential components of drug addiction.” (Newlin, et al.) In this theory the casual drug initiates or creates the habit and the transition to addiction is also a transition to habit maintenance. The habit theory also refers to environmental cues that are associated with an individual’s drug use. Newlin, et al. state that drug liking changes with addiction to drug “wanting” and to “needing”. They further state that the drug use “becomes semi-autonomous and partially or wholly divorced from the motivational processes that originally promoted it. (Newlin, et al.) In other words it takes on “a life of its own” a mundane habit that is neither pleasurable nor exciting. (Newlin, et al.) Newlin and his colleagues theorize that humans and mammals in general adapt to survive and some of the habits that are formed are a means of survival. In their
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