Most of the drug abusers do not become addicted. They abuse drugs for a certain period and then just sort of graduate out of it; or they become interested in life and realize that drug use is getting in the way of their goals and simply stop.
But an unfortunately high number of drug abusers do pass the point of control, the point at which addiction sets in. And anyone CAN become addicted.
Addiction can be defined as:
Slavishly continuing some behavior, such as the use of a drug, gambling to excess or some other activity, despite resulting negative consequences and a desire to stop.
There are varying degrees of addiction. The more severely addicted a person becomes, the more severe the negative consequences he or she might be willing to experience for the sake of the addictive behavior.
That is a very important distinction. If the negative consequences are not bad enough to force the addict to give up the drug, alcohol or whatever, they will continue to use. This is where the old saying about "hitting bottom" comes from.
Unfortunately, some addictions are so strong the only bottom deep enough to force the addict to quit is death.
So, when is an addiction bad enough to require treatment? When the drug addict is unable to stop using drugs on his or her own decision, treatment is necessary.
So if you hear this, "I know I need to quit. I want to quit, but I have tried and just can't." Now they need detox and rehab. Now, it is time to call the treatment center.
Drug addiction is progressive, that means it will not get better, only worse. Tomorrow it will be even more difficult for the addict to stop using and he or she will be using larger doses!
Addiction can kill.
When the addict wants to stop but is unable to do so, it is time for professional help.