Drug addiction is a serious epidemic, why don’t we treat it like one?

The term drug addiction is something that has become staple in the different media platforms. We hear it on a daily basis. We are constantly reminded that it is a kind of problem that needs an immediate solution. But the sad thing is, not all of us actually take it on a serious note. For most of us, we think that knowing it is enough and there is no need for us to take part in it. What we don’t know is that there should be a collective effort in order to solve the problem. But it should always start by treating the problem as a serious one.

Drug addiction is a serious problem

We are in this surreal moment in time when creating a social media challenge to raise money for a cause, for example, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, has become the main source of funding for some of our most successful scientific research endeavors. Gene editing can be done in your garage on a layman’s budget. And, suddenly, the people responsible for our health care future are wondering, “Is curing patients a sustainable business model?”

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Drug addiction is an intergenerational disease, just as prevalent in the family tree as cancer or diabetes. In fact, studies found that animals exposed to prenatal stress tend to exhibit the same signs as seen in addiction and are more likely to self-medicate when given access. Addiction is a serious brain disease that targets the “opioid attachment-reward system, the dopamine-based incentive-motivation apparatus and the self-regulation areas of the prefrontal cortex.”

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