By: Brian Diggins

Substance abuse is the overindulgence
in and dependence of a drug or other chemical leading to effects that
are detrimental to the individual's physical and mental health, or the
welfare of others. Substance abuse may lead to addiction or substance
dependence. Substance abuse may be a contributing factor for between
one-third and two-thirds of maltreated children in the child welfare
system. Substance abuse is not something that only happens to people of
a certain income level or people who live in certain neighborhoods.

parents enable teens to abuse prescription drugs, marijuana, alcohol,
with prescription drugs and marijuana availability up sharply. Some
teens say prescription drugs are easier to buy than beer. Problem
parents—those who fail to monitor their children’s school night
activities, safeguard their prescription drugs, address the problem of
drugs in their children’s schools, and set good examples—increase the
risk that their 12- to 17-year old children will smoke, drink, and use
illegal and prescription drugs, according to the National Survey of
American Attitudes on Substance Abuse XIII: Teens and Parents, the 13th
annual back-to-school survey conducted by The National Center on
Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University.

are on-going debates as to the exact distinctions between substance
abuse and substance dependence, but current practice standard
distinguishes between the two by defining substance dependence in terms
of physiological and behavioral symptoms of substance use, and
substance abuse in terms of the social consequences of substance use.
Co-occurring disorders is the simultaneous presence of two or more
disorders, such as the coexistence of a mental health disorder and
substance abuse problem. Dependence almost always implies abuse, but
abuse frequently occurs without dependence, particularly when an
individual first begins to abuse a substance. Dependence involves
physiological processes while substance abuse reflects a complex
interaction between the individual, the abused substance and society. A
person can take a drug once and that can be enough for his body to
decide that it wants that drug all of the time. Physical complications
of chronic alcohol dependence include cirrhosis (liver damage),
hepatitis, altered brain-cell functioning, nerve damage, gastritis
(inflammation of the stomach), premature aging, impotence and
infertility, and a variety of reproductive disorders.

All drugs
that are addicting can activate and affect the brain's pleasure
circuit. Someone who is addicted uses drugs without thinking of the
consequences, such as problems with health, money, relationships, and
performance at work or at school. Given that much work in substance
abuse is interdisciplinary, one may find social work articles in a
variety of professional journals, from medicine and nursing, to
journals devoted specifically to addiction. It becomes the
responsibility of a trained addiction treatment professional to
evaluate you and determine the most effective modality of care.

Substance Abuse Prevention Program (SAPP) is a nationally recognized
program designed to provide education and to increase awareness in the
areas of alcohol and other drug prevention, intervention, treatment,
and recovery. While no single approach for substance abuse and
addiction treatment exists, comprehensive and carefully tailored
treatment works. The Greenbook Directory is primarily a listing of
chemical dependency service providers certified by the Division of
Alcohol and Substance Abuse (DASA). National Substance Abuse Index
provides a centralized, comprehensive, and easy-to-use directory for
the full spectrum of resources related to dealing with alcoholism and
drug addiction. By learning about the available centers, people can
help their loved ones choose a substance abuse program when they are
ready to finally give up their drugs of choice. Your doctor can give
you support and help you find a treatment program that meets your
needs. Alcohol Support Groups can give you the tools and support you
need to break your addiction and move on with your life.

Diggins is the Director of Recovery Resources for Alcoholic Ape llc. He
has over twenty five years in the field of Addiction, Substance Abuse
and Recovery. You can read more from Brian by visiting

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