The Likely Cause of Addiction

I recently came across this article that was posted on the Mark’s Daily Apple website:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/johann-hari/the-real-cause-of-addicti_b_6506936.html

It really blew my mind- changes everything I was ever taught about addiction in my medical training.  My current experience with addiction is mainly with pregnant patients.  Most patients who are drinking too much alcohol, or smoking cigarettes and/or weed prior to pregnancy are able to stop, but sometimes there are patients who continue to use in pregnancy.  And sometimes there are patients who remain addicted to harder substances like methamphetamines in pregnancy.

The main gist of the article is that it’s actually the lack of human connection, as opposed to simply the addictive nature of the substance, that seems to play a large part in an individual becoming an addict.  The author cites interesting rat experiments, as well as human examples that support this.  Very fascinating stuff.

What worries me in this age of electronics and social media is that our current culture is potentially encouraging a lack of human connection, and based on the above article, may be inadvertently fostering addiction in various forms.  As a soon-t0-be parent, I can certainly try to raise my children in a way that fosters human connection.  But ultimately, I worry about the ramifications as a whole on our future generations.  I previously posted a link to the Fed Up documentary on the obesity epidemic.  The movie clearly shows what kinds of effects that broad systems issues can have on our nation (in this case, the powerful food industry and the limited ability of our government to combat it), and how difficult these issues can be to reverse once the damage is so pervasive.

Advertisements

One thought on “The Likely Cause of Addiction

  1. Jacques February 10, 2015 / 10:37 am

    One of the most interesting findings that I have heard about addiction. As interesting to me is that the original experiment was done in 1970, yet policy doesn’t seem to take into account the social factors as much as it probably should.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s