DREXEL PSY 310 - Drug Abuse and Addiction- Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow (2 pages)

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Drug Abuse and Addiction- Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow



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Drug Abuse and Addiction- Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

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2
School:
Drexel University
Course:
Psy 310 - Drugs & Human Behavior

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Drug Abuse and Addiction Yesterday Today and Tomorrow Adapted from NIH Fact Sheet on Drug Abuse and Addiction Thirty Years Ago Addiction was considered a moral failing a lack of will over one s actions The mid 70s were the heyday of many drugs of abuse including nicotine marijuana and amphetamines Had these trends continued rather than shift downward for the last decade we would today see exponentially higher health care and education costs unemployment and crime We did not know how drugs of abuse worked in the brain and the technologies that would reveal how and which brain areas were affected did not exist The wide ranging health effects of drug abuse e g heart and lung diseases hepatitis and HIV AIDS were not known Methadone was the only medication available for treating drug addiction Behavioral treatments existed but were not yet in use Today Recent scientific advances have revolutionized our understanding of addiction as a chronic relapsing disease and not a moral failure Knowledge from scientific research prompted notable shifts in attitudes and behaviors toward drug abuse Today approximately 700 000 fewer young people use illicit drugs than just four years ago an impressive 19 percent reduction Use of certain drugs e g nicotine and LSD is now lower than at any time since the Monitoring the Future survey of students began in 1975 Percent of Students Reporting Past Month Use of Any Illicit Drug Has Decreased Percent of Students Reporting Past Month Use of Any Illicit Drug Has Decreased 25 1 9 4 1 8 2 P e rc e n t 20 1 7 3 1 6 1 1 5 8 15 10 5 0 8 th 1 0 t h a n d 1 2 th C o m b i n e d 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 Effective medications behavioral treatments and a decade of educational initiatives greatly reduced the spread of HIV AIDS through injection drug use from its peak of more than 25 000 new cases in 1993 to fewer than 10 000 cases in 2003 NIH researchers identified the specific sites of action in the brain where every major drug of abuse including opiates



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