The Myth of Addiction

Author(s) : Dilys Davies, Author(s) : Dinesh Bhugra

The Myth of Addiction

Book Details

  • Publisher : Psychology Press
  • Published : 1997
  • Category :
    Addictions
  • Catalogue No : 25180
  • ISBN 13 : 9789057022371
  • ISBN 10 : 9057022370

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This work argues that current attitudes towards drug misuse are inaccurate and harmful. It examines how addictive behaviour may be a form of learned helplessness, not an effect caused by narcotic intake. Current attitudes toward drug misuse in the media, government and even treatment centres, often exaggerate the pharmacological power of drugs. Their coercive influence is widely believed to be so great that to experiment with a drug is tantamount to addiction. The author argues that such beliefs are largely inaccurate and harmful. Research shows that explanations for drug use vary according to circumstances. Drug users may explain that they have lost their willpower and capacity for personal decision-making, because this is the explanation expected of them, but most actually use drugs because they want to and because they see no good reason for giving them up. Addicted behaviour is therefore a form of learned helplessness, not an effect caused by narcotic intake.

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