Topic: other models of addiction
The author correctly observes that the type of treatment offered for addiction will reflect prevailing beliefs about addiction itself– its causes, effects, likely outcome.
Addictions are complex. Considering the various risk factors, it’s likely that marijuana will appear to act as a gateway to harder drugs for some users, but not others.
Having read the research, I’m confident it’s not just a matter of decision-making, or willpower, or even depression.
If by chance the patient didn’t fit the physician’s preconception of an addict– he or she was a respected member of the community, for example– then the doctor often fell into the enabler role.
We develop habits and routines that seem to have a life of their own– and you’re never more aware of that than when you go to change them.
Many clinicians don’t view addiction as a disease, which they believe relieves them of the need to learn much about its pathophysiology.
There’s always someone who is convinced that with the right support, the right technique, they could once again drink socially.
The idea was that the drinker would admit his sins, beg forgiveness, accept punishment, and promise to abstain from that point on.
And there’s no reliable way to tell whether addictive personality traits represent a cause or a result of addiction.
However necessary — and it is necessary — good acute care will never be enough to solve the problem of addictions.