Addiction and Substance Abuse
An “invisible line” can be drawn between substance abuse and addiction, also called substance dependence. Substance abuse is a behavior, something people do. And lots of people do it. In some age and race groups, more people abuse substances (such as alcohol or other mood-altering drugs) than do not. Our society approves of substance abuse, and sometimes even encourages it. Advertisements, movies, and other media would have us believe that abusing substances – getting drunk or high – can be funny, cool, or even sexy. Most people who abuse substances do so when they are young, and most grow out of that stage in their lives.
Some of the people who abuse substances, though, will cross the “invisible line” to become addicted