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Addiction & Treatment
Research

The Real Cause of Addiction

There is a definitive cause for excessive drug and/or alcohol use! Those that use drugs and/or alcohol excessively are, in fact, the cause of their excessive drug and/or alcohol use; i.e. they are, on every occasion, cognitively choosing to use drugs and/or alcohol. By repeatedly and cognitively choosing to use drugs and/or alcohol sets in motion the process of neuroplasticity. Because excessive users of drugs and/or alcohol choose to excessively use drugs and/or alcohol, loved ones may be tempted to think, "I knew it all along he didn’t have a disease, it’s his fault that he uses alcohol and drugs!"

The word "fault" really doesn’t apply here inasmuch as substance users are, just like everyone else, free to choose for themselves what to do or not do. Loved ones may get confused when they hear their substance user say the morning after a bender or after two days in a crack house, "God, I wish I hadn’t done that." But at the time users decide to go on a bender or do some crack or do some heroin that is what they really want to do. The consequences and possible remorse they experience afterwards did not enter into the decision to use; their habituated mind to use was facilitated by their expectations of a pleasurable (happy) experience which they had experienced many times before.

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