Addiction Vs. Dependence : Addiction Essay

2430 Words Dec 6th, 2016 10 Pages
In the slightly recent years, drug addiction has been classified as a disease rather than just a physical addiction that was thought in the past. There are two ways that people look at drug use, and that is addiction vs. dependence. “Addiction is a primary condition manifesting as uncontrollable cravings, inability to control drug use, compulsive drug use, and use despite doing harm to oneself or others.” (O’Brien 2016). What addiction means is that one has an uncontrollable craving towards a specific item, whether it is drugs, tobacco, or caffeine. These strong cravings are common among all types of addiction which can be traced back to their altered brain biology, which is why the medical world has adapted it as being a disease. Dependence is very different from addiction according to new age medicine. “Physical dependence to opioids means that the body relies on an external source of opioids to prevent withdrawal.” (O’Brien 2016). The reason why dependence happens is because when your body’s tolerance increases to a certain substance, it can’t keep up with making the correct amount endorphins, in a drug user’s case, which causes withdrawal. This means the user is dependent on that drug in order to keep the withdrawal at bay. Is addiction really a disease though? Put aside those who are truly forced to use drugs, such as captured “to be prostitutes” and concentrate on the majority of drug users, those who chose to use the drug. All people make choices about whether to…

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