Bay Area Medical Information (
Drug Abuse
There is a serious drug problem in this country, and marijuana is a much bigger part of the problem than most people realize. Marijuana is not harmless and it is addictive. More young people are now in treatment for marijuana dependency than for alcohol or for all other illegal drugs combined.

Understanding Drug Addiction
from the National Institute of Health

There is a prevailing myth in our society that people with drug-related problems are morally weak and have criminal tendencies.  It is often believed that drug abusers and addicts should be able to stop taking drugs if they are willing to change their behavior. 

Addiction does begin when an individual makes a conscious choice to use drugs, but addiction is not just frequent drug use.  The drugs actually interfere with normal brain functioning creating long-term effects on brain metabolism and activity.  Ultimately, changes occur in the brain that turn drug abuse into addiction.  

Drug addiction is a chronic, relapsing illness that is clearly treatable.

National Organizations and Websites
  • U.S.: Cocaine Hotline 1-800-COCAINE
    The hotline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is manned with trained professionals who help find assistance or just provide support. Each operator goes through a training process to give you the best support available.
--Written by N Thompson, ARNP, Last Updated July 2012

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