Doctor insights on:
What Drugs Are Instantly Addictive
Addiction definition: People can become psychologically dependent on any drug – or anything else for that matter. This means that the person using drugs feels they cannot cope or face the world unless they are under the influence of drugs. In contrast people can only become physically dependent on certain drugs. Physical dependency results from the repeated, heavy use of drugs like heroin, tranquillisers and alcohol. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory, and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors. A person affected by addiction will be unable to consistently Abstain from use, will have Impaired Behavioral control, will have Craving or increased "hunger" for drugs or rewarding experiences, will have a Dysfunctional Emotional response, and will show diminished recognition of significant problems with their own ...Read more
Not a simple ?: Addiction has become more of a legal and social term. Medically, we speak of "substance use disorders." Drugs which cause physical dependency are alcohol, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, some other sedatives, and opioid pain medication, and all can also lead to addiction. Amphetamines, cocaine, hallucinogens, inhalants may not cause physical dependency, but compulsive use can constitute addiction. ...Read more
Who says it is?: Addiction is not a function of the drug as much as it is a function of the person who is TAKING that drug. Most people who drink are not addicted to alcohol, but 10% or so are. The same number is true of marijuana, with about 10% of users having dependency. It has a very mild withdrawal syndrome for one, compared to alcohol, tranquilizers or opiates, and doesn't have the euphoria of stimulants. ...Read more
Complicated: The same question as "What causes addiction?"Addictive drugs specifically affect the motivational portion of the brain so that you are chemically changed to want more of the drug. But it takes a certain regular amount, a certain length of time. And some people are more affected than others. This is different from "physically dependent," and "Psychologically dependent, " and "habitual." ...Read more
Of course: "drug" is a very generic word. Antibiotics, antihypertensives, anti-diabetes medications are all drugs. Any substance from outside the body that changes our physiology is a drug. Only a handful of drug classes produce tolerance and withdrawal, which is what makes a drug dependency-producing (i don't use the term "addictive" drug - addiction more involves the person, not the medicine). ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
See below: The person takes the substance and cannot stop. Withdrawal symptoms - when body levels of that substance go below a certain level the patient has physical and mood-related symptoms. Addiction continues despite health problem awareness - the individual continues taking the substance regularly, even though they have developed illnesses linked to it. ...Read more
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