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Overview of Addictions

Also known as Substance Abuse and Substance Dependence, addictions involve the repeated, excessive and uncontrolled use of potentially dangerous substances, including alcohol, amphetamines, cannabis, cocaine, hallucinogens, inhalants, ecstasy, nicotine, opioids (including heroin), PCP, and sedatives.

These conditions can persist for many years, affect a very substantial part of the population, and are a source of significant suffering, health risks and costs to society, as described here. It seems that there are common causes that put individuals at risk for developing addictions in general but not to any one substance in particular. Treatments are available, and are usually delivered by specialized addictions programs that provide a combination of counseling and medications.

 

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Substance Abuse