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Disease or Choice of Behavior?

Experts have long disagreed on the issue of whether addiction is an illness or a deliberate action. Some people think addiction is an illness, while others think it is a behavior choice. Addiction, in my opinion, is a disease rather than a deliberate activity. This viewpoint is supported by research showing that brain alterations that impact a person’s motivation, self-control, and decision-making are linked to addiction. Despite adverse effects, these alterations lead to obsessive drug seeking and use, a defining characteristic of addiction.

There is a lot of proof that shows addiction is a sickness. According to studies, long-term drug use alters the structure and function of the brain, which results in compulsive drug use and craving. This indicates that a person cannot decide whether to use drugs rationally and cannot limit their drug usage despite the consequences (Lee et al., 2022). Addiction is frequently accompanied by withdrawal symptoms, which can be debilitating and result in relapse if not appropriately treated. These symptoms are brought on by changes in the brain brought on by addiction and are not under the person’s control.

The disease model of addiction also highlights that addiction is a chronic disorder that necessitates continuing care. It acknowledges that addiction is a complicated medical issue that needs a multifaceted approach to therapy rather than being a moral failing or a lack of willpower. Medication, behavioral therapy, and assistance from family and friends may all be a part of this strategy. We can lessen stigma and increase access to treatment for those suffering from addiction by recognizing addiction as an illness.

My belief that addiction is a disease would impact my professional work’s philosophy and mission by highlighting the necessity of a holistic approach to addiction therapy. This would entail addressing the psychological and social components of addiction and its bodily manifestations. Additionally, it would entail speaking out in favor of laws and initiatives that would lessen discrimination against addicts and increase their access to care.

Domestic Abuse: Underreported and Misunderstood

One in four men may experience physical abuse, rape, or stalking by an intimate partner over their lifetime, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline (Cerulli et al., 2023). In addition, one in seven males reports having endured severe physical abuse from an intimate partner at some point in their lives, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although it is widely accepted that the number of male victims of domestic abuse is substantially higher than recorded, these numbers are based on reported cases.

Due to various variables, many professionals think that the reported number of male victims of domestic abuse is lower than the real number. Men are less likely than women to disclose abuse, maybe out of concern for appearing weak or less manly. Men may also worry that if they disclose abuse, they won’t be believed or treated properly (Cerulli et al., 2023). In addition, men might worry that their abuser would retaliate or lack access to resources and programs designed especially for male victims.

Social and cultural perceptions of gender norms and masculinity are another element that influences the underreporting of male victims. Men may find it challenging to accept their partner is abusing them since males are frequently supposed to be powerful, tough, and in charge. Other people who may not think that males may be victims of domestic abuse may stigmatize and disbelieve male victims, adding to their suffering.

It is critical for healthcare professionals to be aware of the incidence of domestic violence and to offer services and support to all victims, regardless of gender. This may entail checking patients for indications of abuse, informing them of the resources and support services that are offered, and providing a comfortable, judgment-free setting for them to talk about their experiences.


Cerulli, C., Missell-Gray, R., Harrington, D., Thurston, S. W., Quinlan, K., Jones, K. R., & Cross, W. F. (2023). A Randomized Control Trial to Test Dissemination of an Online Suicide Prevention Training For Intimate Partner Violence Hotline Workers. Journal of Family Violence, 1-14.

Lee, K., Freudenberg, N., Zenone, M., Smith, J., Mialon, M., Marten, R., … & Buse, K. (2022). Measuring the commercial determinants of health and disease: a proposed framework. International Journal of Health Services52(1), 115-128.


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