debate 2 - Bloom 1 Julianna Bloom PSYC 373 Dr Folkerts...

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Bloom 1 Julianna Bloom March 17, 2009 PSYC 373 Dr. Folkerts Debate 2: Is Drug Addiction a Disease? There are conflicting views regarding drug and alcohol abuse and dependence also categorized as addiction. The disease model is often seen as the only answer just because medical doctors say that is how to classify dependence and abuse. Those who believe that addiction is a disease rely on biological effects and neurotransmitters that affect behavior. The opponents of that theory argue that addiction does not fit the same category of physical or mental disease and it is intentional conduct. Personally, I believe that taking drugs is a conscious choice contributing to the biological affects of the drug. The proponents of the disease model look at learning and reward systems that are influenced by neurotransmitters in the brain. Operant conditioning is the process of learning a behavior because of its consequences. Thus, we are more likely to engage in behaviors that are rewarding. Drug users associate the reward with the surroundings in which they first encountered it. So those memories can trigger the urges or cravings to have a drug. It’s the pathways in the brain that affect how we behave. The drugs specifically impact the pathways that the neurotransmitters use for reward systems. They will mimic or block the brain’s neurotransmitters and that affects what the brain needs or how much is produced. Addictive drugs influence brain chemistry that is involved in the basic
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debate 2 - Bloom 1 Julianna Bloom PSYC 373 Dr Folkerts...

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