Substance Abuse Treatment

"Alcoholism and drug dependence and

addiction, known as substance use disorders,

are complex problems. People with

these disorders once were thought to have

a character defect or moral weakness;

some people mistakenly still believe that.

However, most scientists and medical

researchers now consider dependence on

alcohol or drugs to be a long-term illness,

like asthma, hypertension (high blood

pressure), or diabetes. Most people who

drink alcohol drink very little, and many

people can stop taking drugs without a

struggle. However, some people develop

a substance use disorder—use of alcohol

or drugs that is compulsive or dangerous

(or both). "