Position affects our neighbors, our friends, and our family

Position Paper: Is Addiction a Brain Disease?IntroductionThis person is a drug abuser, you chose this because you chose to smoke the weed, shoot up heroin, snort cocaine, and chose to buy prescription pills that you did not need. You chose this. Drug Addiction is a serious problem in the contemporary society affecting people from all walks of life, it is not limited to certain social classes or lifestyles. It is found in every ethnic group, regardless of gender or age. It affects our neighbors, our friends, and our family either directly or indirectly. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), addiction leading to drug abuse is considered a disease. This definition puts addiction in the same breath as other chronic relapsing diseases such as heart disease, asthma, and diabetes (Branch, 2011). However, this assertion is questionable when the definition of a disease is considered. A disease refers to a situation where some parts of the human body are experiencing a typical physiological functioning resulting in undesirable symptoms. For instance, the prevalence of diabetes can be caused by an abnormality in insulin production due to defective cells (Branch, 2011). Therefore, when a person has diabetes, he or she cannot choose to directly stop the symptoms or the abnormal physiological processes in the body. In this regard, the only remedy is achieved indirectly through treatment procedures. Conversely, in addiction, no such physiological disorder is observable. As a result, there have been numerous attempts to describe addiction using concrete scientific data to describe it however, the have been so many public debates that as resulted in controversy since there is no consensus on whether addiction is a choice or a disease. Some factions hold the view that addiction is a disease and that people are powerless to control its prevalence. Conversely, some scientists believe that addiction is a choice and that people have considerable control over their behavior. Despite the controversy surrounding the definition of addiction, it is apparent that addiction is a behavior hens it being a  choice since it is based on voluntary human behavior and cant not be diagnosed as a disease. The major issues with drug consumption are the physical dependence developed for the drug itself.  Dependence can vary from drug to drug; physical, psychological, or both.  Physical dependence becomes apparent with the drug intake is decreased or stopped involuntarily by illness or withdrawal ” Using drugs repeatedly over time changes brain structure and function in fundamental and long-lasting ways that can persist long after the individual stop using them”(Daniel, 1997).  Psychological dependence is indicated when the user relies on a drug to produce a feeling of wellbeing this can cause the user to become obsessed with the drug and focuses only on obtaining and using the drug. Tolerance is another factor to consider is this process. Tolerance does not always develop, but when and if it does, it creates the abuser the use increasingly larger doses of the drug to produce the high they need.  This then leads to addiction with dependence and tolerance as big factors.  Drugs can either depress or stimulate the central nervous system, depending on the certain drug and how it enters the body.  Problems resulting from drug abuse can be death, depression, anxiety, or psychological problems “Addiction is a brain disease expressed in the form of compulsive behavior” (Daniel, 1997). The disease model of addiction focuses on changes in the brain that occur with chemical dependency. Once these changes occur, the choice is essentially no longer an option. Once your body becomes physically dependent on drugs or alcohol, you can no longer choose to stop using you must because a disease does not provide any good sensations but the effect of drugs abuse and alcohol does just that such as euphoria and other positive sensations, the disease Cancer, for example, does not yield such sensations; it causes serious pain.Drug abuse is often used for the rewarding effects, or high, that the drug gives and often leads to physical dependence and addiction.  The concept of impaired control can be classified with alcohol abuse disorders and how impaired control constructs the impulse and disinhibition of the brain.  Impaired self-control can also be examined when identifying specific impairments that contribute to drug abuse and emerge as a consequence of long drug abuse Drug abusers account for more than one-third of the growth in state prison and more than 80 percent of the increase in the number of federal prison inmates since 1985 (NDIC).  Also, 45% of individuals with an untreated substance use disorder commit suicide.In Daniel the question of can we call “Drug Addiction a Brain Disease” puts me back a  bit I get the neurotic change that happens in the brain when drug is introduced to the brain, however from what I know of addiction from my psychology classes, people don’t do drugs because they are physically depended on it and do not want to go through withdrawal, people do drugs because they just want to feel good. (Positive Incentive theory). For example, addicts to alcohol will say they drink to feel less stressed, so they drink the feel good and avoid dealing with reality so they continue to drink. I believe choosing to do drug is a way a choose, using these 5 commonly used drugs tobacco(nicotine), cocaine, ecstasy, opiates and Marijuana which as be proven to have no tolerance or dependence because you don’t need to take more each time you use it to get the same effect as the last time. With this being said I don’t think I agree with addiction being a disease because they are centers that can detoxify you where you no longer feel the effects of the drug, the power is in your hand, as you choices to do the drug so can you choose to stop.    Considering the arguments on the definition of addiction, it is evident that addiction is not a disease since it is a result of human behavior. The evidence put forward by factions that support the view that addiction is a disease is weak and unconvincing. For instance, brain scans have been used by NIDA to back up its definition that addiction is a brain disease. However, this evidence has several discrepancies. Firstly, the brain scans used by the organization are not indicative of any abnormal changes. Proponents readily point to changes in an individual’s brain as evidence that addiction is a brain disease. However, this argument is fallacious, since changes in a human brain are not exclusive to addicts and sick people, but they can occur when a person is normal (Branch, 2011). For instance, a study revealed that the brain of London taxi drivers was more developed when compared to normal drivers (Schaler, 2011). In addition, it is possible for people to change behavior despite the fact that brain activity changes due to repeated use of substances (Vuchinich & Heather, 2003). Finally, the evidence provided by NIDA does not provide any evidence to indicate that the behavior of addicts is involuntary or compulsive.My conclusion is that addiction is caused by drugs that are induced with one or more certain types of chemicals that travel through the brain and have an effect on the area of the brain where we feel pleasure and joyful feelings. Also, some people are more susceptible than others to become addicted to drugs of abuse than others because their brain reacts differently to the chemical(s) in a drug. Furthermore, addiction has signs and symptoms and a predictable progression and it is apparent that the characteristics of the disease…Related DocumentsBranch, M. (2011).Drug addiction. Is it a disease or is it based on choice? A review of Gene Heyman’s Addiction: A disorder of choice. J Exp Anal Behav, 95(2), 263–267.doi:  10.1901/jeab.2011.95-263″drug abuse.” Encyclopaedia Britannica. Britannica Academic. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc.Web. 29 Mar. 2016. .Schaler, J. (2011). Addiction Is a Choice. New York: Open Court.Manuel Velasquez, Claire Andre, Thomas Shanks, S.J., and Michael J. Meyer. “The Common Good.” – Ethical Decision Making. SCU, 2 Aug. 2014. Web. 28 Apr. 2016. .Marczinski, Cecile, A. Abroms, Ben Selst, and D. Fillmore. “Alcohol-induced Impairment of