drug addiction

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Wikipedia.
Related to drug addiction: drug abuse

drug addiction


drug dependency

a chronic physical and psychological compulsion or craving to take a drug, in which the person concerned must continue to take the drug in order to avoid unpleasant physical and psychological effects resulting from withdrawal from the drug. Compare DRUG TAKING FOR PLEASURE.

Many drugs can be associated with drug addiction and dependency, including sedatives (e.g. barbiturates), the opiates (e.g. heroin) and alcohol (see ALCOHOLISM). Drugs which do not lead to dependency include cannabis, the hallucinogens (e.g. lysergic acid – LSD), and stimulants such as cocaine and amphetamines. While so-called ‘hard drugs’ such as heroin attract the main attention of governments and researchers, addiction to alcohol is far more widespread. The indiscriminate medicinal use of barbiturates in the 1960s has also been responsible for much drug dependency. More recently, benzodiazepines (notably Valium) replaced barbiturates as a new source of medically induced drug dependency The control of addictive drugs has been a major concern of Western governments and the United Nations, but with mixed success. While government control of dangerous drugs reflects public concern, what needs explanation is why some non-addictive drugs, such as cannabis, are illegal, whilst other, more addictive drugs, such as tobacco and alcohol, are legal. Various explanations are offered for this phenomenon, including: the difficulty of controlling long-established drugs, and the occurrence of MORAL PANICS and mass media DEVIANCE AMPLIFICATION, and hence heightened controls and policing in relation to newly introduced drugs, particularly when these are associated with other forms of social DEVIANCE, and/or with lower status and ethnic minority groups.

Drug Addiction

Confessions of an English Opium-Eater
Thomas de Quincy tells of his opium addiction, his nightmarish experiences, and the sufferings of withdrawal. [Br. Lit.: Haydn & Fuller, 155]
Holmes, Sherlock
the famous sleuth, addicted to cocaine. [Br. Lit.: Benét, 473]
Man with the Golden Arm, The
Chicagoan Frankie Machine, a failure, takes to morphine, murders his supplier, and hangs himself. [Am. Lit.: Benét, 632]
Tyrone, Mary
addicted to morphine after childbirth, thanks to her husband’s choice of a quack doctor. [Am. Lit.: O’Neill Long Day’s Journey into Night in Sobel, 431]
Valley of the Dolls
portrays self-destruction of drug addicted starlets. [Am. Lit.: Valley of the Dolls]
References in periodicals archive ?
This data driven report contains over 30 links to online copies of actual drug addiction deals and contract documents as submitted to the Securities Exchange Commission by companies and their partners, where available.
Ayaz Mandokhail, a social activist, said that drug addiction is a challenge that requires stern measures to curb the menace from the society.
One thing is certain: Drug addiction can never develop in people who never use drugs.
Saudis account for over 54 percent of drug users in the Kingdom and drug addiction among women has increased by 20 percent during the past few years, according to a report.
A slew of activities and programmes will be launched through print, audio-visual media and social networks to raise awareness of the dangers of drug addiction on the individual, family and society.
According to a report issued by the Fund for Drug Control and Addiction, the country's official drug addiction body, 19,700 addicts had finalized completed treatment at its medical centres in the first six months of 2012, compared to only 18,000 in 2011.
The TUByM study also highlighted a link between possible disorders in a person's mental health and personality and the severity of their drug addiction, stating that drug addiction is seen more frequently in people with antisocial personality disorders or mental health problems.
THERE is something far wrong in Scotland's attitude and response to drug addiction.
BAHRAIN'S fight against drug addiction is being stepped up with plans to use religious centres as a platform to spread awareness of rehabilitation programmes.
A recently discovered gene, the Clock gene, may play a role in the circadian rhythmicity of drug addiction.
Liberalization without social pressures on problems brought by drug addiction will never let us get rid of this trouble.
The key to social housing is to have large numbers of children, to become unemployable and then throw in a number of added extras such as a criminal record or long-term drug addiction.