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What Dr. Ben Carson Thinks About Addiction

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Dr. Ben Carson believes “addiction occurs in people who are vulnerable, who are lacking something in their lives,” and he plans on addressing the issue of addiction by returning America to its “values and principles” if elected president in 2016.

Dr. Ben Carson On Addiction

Dr. Ben Carson was asked by host John Dickerson recently on CBS “Face the Nation” what his professional opinion was on the issue of addiction.

“Well, there are all kinds of addictions,” Carson stated. “Usually addictions occur in people who are vulnerable, who are lacking something in their lives. And so we have to really start asking ourselves, what have we taken out of our lives in America? What are some of those values and principles that allowed us to ascend the ladder of success so rapidly to the very pinnacle of the world and the highest pinnacle anyone else had ever reached?” Carson went on to further say, “Why are we in the process of throwing away all of our values and principles for the sake of political correctness?”

The Definition Of The Disease Of Addiction

Per the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM):

Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors.

An estimated 38,000 people who abused drugs, died from an unintentional drug overdose in 2010. That number grew to more than 43,000 in 2013, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

The Republican candidate also suggested that the nation’s heroin epidemic has been caused by the failure of the American government in securing the Mexican border.

“I was down there with the sheriffs,” the retired neurosurgeon explained. “And you can purchase it so easily. This is not a good thing for us. We need to not give up on this war on drugs and certainly not to facilitate it. We can do this, but we have to have the national will to do it.”

Treating Addiction As A Disease

Although there definitely needs to be more action when it comes to mitigating the amount of drugs that are coming into our country, we can’t just stop there in hopes that it will cure our nation of the disease of addiction.  There also needs to be an equal amount of effort going into the treatment of already addicted individuals.

We need to medically treat addiction as if it were the deadly progressive disease that it is, and make sure that all individuals have the opportunity to recover from this disease just as if they were plagued with any other physical illness. Part of the reason that so many addicts and alcoholics are not getting help, is because so-called “specialists” out there are minimizing the disease concept and propagating the misconception that addiction can purely be cured through a change of morals. More needs to be done if we are going to see people recover long-term.

More: Changing The Perception of Addiction: It’s Not A Moral Failure

Getting Help For Addiction

If you would like to learn more about the treatment of addiction, please contact one our trained addiction specialist now at 1-800-861-1768.

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