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The problem with reducing addiction to moral failure

Addiction

Addiction is Complicated

The frustration is understandable. But there is no redemptive value in labeling addicts as losers or casting them in other pejorative terms. The complex issue of addiction has more to do with neuroscience than ideas about morality.

Addiction is complicated. It can’t be reduced to oversimplifications. It’s convenient to make moral assertions about people stuck in addiction but the real issue has to do with the effects of drugs and alcohol on brain chemistry and this is a much more complex issue than simple caricatures can define.

To make judgments on the moral character of an addict is either an underestimation of the power of substances or an overestimation of the moral superiority of the one who makes such judgments. This isn’t to zing judgmentalism. That’s easy enough. The goal here rather is to shine some light on some pretty pervasive misinformation out there and to explain the more complicated reality of addiction and its effect on neural pathways.

Here are 2 links for people who want to gain a deeper understanding of addiction and the effects of substances on brain chemistry…

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, call us today at 410-581-4900. We can help.

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