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Drug Addiction a Disease of the Brain - Research Paper Example

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Name Date Course Section/# Two Divergent Views on Drug Use/Abuse With respect to whether drug addiction can be named as a disease of the mind, the argument basically falls into two different areas. First, there is the position that drug addiction is only a weakness of will that leads a person to seek out a way to lessen life’s difficulties…
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Drug Addiction a Disease of the Brain
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Download file to see previous pages On the other hand, the other side of the debate seeks to explain drug addiction by way of verifiable/measurable proof to label it as an actual disease. This brief analysis will attempt to provide the reader with a better understanding of both of these arguments, how they relate to the issue of drug abuse/addiction, and which of the two may be better in helping to explain the societal problems that are born from drug use/abuse. The first position which will be examined in this analysis will attempt to understand the views within the medical community with regards to the role that willpower plays in helping patients to overcome and continue to remain drug free. In expounding upon this view, the first article which was reviewed, Jacobsen’s “Theories Of Addiction: Methamphetamine Users' Explanations For Continuing Drug Use And Relapse “, helps to paint the picture for why willpower in and of itself can often be the best means towards leading the user towards sobriety. With regards to treating drug abuse as a breakdown/failure of will, there are few options which the author puts forward. As such, the author attempts to quantify and lay out a framework for how willpower can be exorcised to help the drug user successfully quit their addiction. Although helpful in understanding one of the prime mechanisms by which the drug user can put away their habits, such an approach is simplistic and does not consider the physical dependence that is exhibited within many drug addicts (Caitlin et al 296). The fact of the matter is that drug addiction can be viewed as a function of time. For instance, the willpower model that has been mentioned may well work when the potential drug user is first presented with the opportunity to take drugs for the first time. In this way, a strong sense of will power and/or self assertion and presence of mind could keep the individual drug free in any given circumstance; however, once the individual has made the willful step to ingest, smoke, snort, or otherwise take drugs, there is often little that can be done to attempt to reclaim a sense of moral fortitude. It is important to note that this is not to say that the drug user is somehow inhuman and beyond help. There doubtless are many cases in which the drug user has come to a sense of realization and has decided that they must put away drugs in order to preserve their own life and happiness (as well as the life and happiness of their family and loved ones) (Miller 16). Unfortunately, this is not the norm. Rather, addiction is usually typified by a selfish need/satisfaction matrix. Rather than being aware of basic human emotions that are driven by a sense of shame and the need to use willpower over an issue in order to fix it, the user/abuser oftentimes is completely unaware of such logic as they are chemically bound to seeking the next high. As such, any across the board statements with relation to how the individual should simply realize that they are dependent and exert a sense of willpower over the vice as a means of bettering their own life is patently short-sighted. In this way, a more complete and differentiated approach to dealing with and understanding drug abuse is necessary to work to assuage the problem. The second approach with which this brief analysis will consider ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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