by ASHLEIGH LEA
Social Media Manager
The definition of addiction is “compulsion engagement in naturally rewarding behavior”. Recently, a family member of mine was harmed by addiction and it is not the first time. The power of addiction can destroy relationships, health, and your future. How does addiction even work? On http://www.psychiatry.org/addiction, I read information on how addiction triggers the brain. Whatever substance that is used can bring a sensation that is enjoyable leading a person to be addicted to it. Then neurons, which is a nerve cell, changes due to that use of substance over and over again. These neurons give out neurotransmitters that gives impulse to nerve cells. Addiction can come from something little than drugs and alcohol, it can come from sugar, caffeine, etc. Nevertheless, it is damaging. It is easy to shrug at people who say “Take care of your body!” but they are not wrong. Whether you are the person who is an addict or know someone who is, there is help to conquer that monster. My family member was checked into the Tarzana Treatment Center, a facility that deals with addiction for all ages. This center goes through many services to find the recovery a patient needs. Depending on patients behavior they have the option to do what is called “output services”, meaning that the patient can receive care while being home with family or loved ones. Receiving help is a hard decision to make, as a person who knows someone going through this addiction I am relieved that my family member went and got help. 23.5 million people who are 12 and older needed drug and alcohol recovery, which is stated in an article from 2011 (http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-statistics). Kids are being influenced younger and younger therefore addiction isn’t just for older ages, it can also start out young. Youth can be influenced by their families or other people around them to abuse substances. As a high school student, everyone around me talks about drinking at parties or smoking marijuana. It never really appealed to me to be involved in that kind of scene, but I would like to encourage those people to be careful. The reason for substance abuse has a meaning behind it. It is your own duty to take initiative for your life to find help.