What Is Addiction? A Definition Of Addiction
What is addiction? And what are the best methods to cope with it? There is no single answer to this question, as it is basically a spectrum of behavior that manifests itself in varying degrees in every person.
Addiction, as defined by the American Psychiatric Association, is “the persistent, exclusive desire or sustained inappropriate use of a drug or other substance, over a period of time, of which the substance can be prescribed or consumed.” To put it another way, you have a problem with drugs.
The brain chemicals mentioned above–referred to as opiates, depressants, stimulants, and opioids–are the most widely abused drugs on the planet. They are also among the most addictive. These drugs affect the brain at different rates. In some cases, people who abuse drugs experience permanent changes in the receptors for certain brain chemicals.
Scientists have long suspected that these changes may cause certain behaviors and changes in brain chemistry. And that explains the reason for many rehabs and sober living homes. People who cannot live without these substances find themselves living in an environment that emphasizes the things they can’t live without.
Many people come to sobriety because of the amazing improvements in their life choices. They had tried all kinds of programs and treatment approaches, and none of them really worked for them.
At first, these comprehensive treatment facilities tended to be secretive and reserved for a very select few, and the good ones were not always readily available. So, people had to turn to the safe route, which was the state or county mental hospitals.
The sad thing is that while in the hospital, the person’s life choices and emotions are controlled by a staff that is largely incompetent and insensitive. Doctors and nurses frequently treat the patient’s “emotional symptoms” like minor mood swings, and work to try to encourage patients to have better “emotional responses” to life’s challenges.
However, as recovery progresses, people become much more adaptable and have a much better handle on their lives. But the kind of care needed to maintain the recovery becomes increasingly difficult, as people are forced to rely more on the mental health centers and sober living homes for help.
So, now you know the basics of what is addiction, how does it affect our lives, and why do people need to “habituate” to a healthy lifestyle? It is important that we understand this: while the words “dependence”addiction” often mean the same thing, there are subtle differences between them.
For the purposes of this article, I am going to offer an easy definition. This is how it works:
We often talk about things like “culture,” “gut feelings,” and “instincts,” but the best way to think about addiction is to think about something you will only accept, if you feel certain things inside. It is like the old saying: “Nature abhors a vacuum!”