Concepts of Chemical Dependency , Sixth Edition by Harold E. Doweiko

By Harold E. Doweiko

Doweiko's accomplished textual content displays the present explosion of data in regards to the realizing, id, and remedy of addictive issues. as well as his thorough exam of the use and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, barbiturates, amphetamines, cocaine, opiates, and hallucinogens, and his sturdy techniques for operating with consumers, Doweiko discusses themes often disregarded of alternative books--such as aerosols, steroids, and over the counter analgesics. also, the textual content investigates such salient issues because the alterations among abusers and addicts; drug results on youngsters, little ones, and pregnant and nursing girls; and kids of alcoholics--ensuring that scholars achieve a professional's figuring out of 1 of the main urgent problems with our time.

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Extra resources for Concepts of Chemical Dependency , Sixth Edition

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What constitutes a valid diagnosis of chemical dependency? Ultimately, the definitions of substance abuse or addiction are quite arbitrary (O’Brien, 2001). A generation ago, George Vaillant (1983) suggested that “it is not who is drinking but who is watching” (p. 22, italics added for emphasis) that defines whether a given person is alcohol dependent. The same is true for other drugs of abuse. In the end, a diagnosis of drug addiction is a value judgment. This professional opinion might be made easier by suggested criteria such as those for mental illnesses in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th edition, 2000; DSM-IV); but even in rather advanced cases of drug dependency, the issue of whether the individual is addicted is not always clear-cut.

Even the stage of addiction to alcohol/drugs is not uniform. Rather, “drug use is considered a normal learned behavior that falls along a continuum ranging from patterns of little use and few problems to excessive use and dependence” (Budney, Sigmon, & Higgins, 2003, p. 249). , 1993). Only the end points—total abstinence, and active physical addiction to chemicals—remain relatively fixed. The main advantage of a drug-use continuum is that it allows us to classify chemical use of various intensities and patterns.

It is also not our purpose to deny that many people are harmed by drug abuse. We know that people become addicted to chemicals. The purpose of this section is to make the reader aware of the shortcomings of the current body of research on substance abuse. The State of the Art: Unanswered Questions, Uncertain Answers As you have discovered by now, there is much confusion in the professional community over the problems of substance abuse/addiction. Even in the case of alcoholism, the most common of the drug addictions, there is an element of confusion or uncertainty over what the essential features of alcoholism might be.

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