Teen Health: Dealing with Addiction

Find out what you can do if you think you or a friend has a drug or alcohol addiction. This article in Teen's Health: Dealing With Addiction explains signs, getting help, and staying clean.

Jason's life is beginning to unravel. His grades have slipped, he's
moody, he doesn't talk to his friends, and he has stopped showing up
for practice. Jason's friends know he has been experimenting with drugs
and now they're worried he has become addicted.

Defining an addiction is tricky, and knowing how to handle one is even harder.

What Are Substance Abuse and Addiction?

The difference between substance abuse and addiction is very slight. Substance abuse means using an illegal substance or using a legal substance in the wrong way. Addiction begins as abuse, or using a substance like marijuana or cocaine. You can abuse a drug (or alcohol) without having an addiction. For example, just because Sara smoked weed a few times doesn't mean that she has an addiction, but it does mean that she's abusing a drug — and that could lead to an addiction
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