Alcoholism and Drug Addiction

  Alcoholics and drugs addicts are chronically sick people whose ailment shows itself in their behavior, which is generally disorderly and antisocial. Unlike many other maladjusted individuals, they have turned to something outsíde themselves to find the characteristic "inadequate but temporarily satisfying solution" to their problems. As in the case of other maladjusted people, this does not solve their difficulties. But, in addition, they face the problems that result from excessive drinking or from taking drugs. In advanced cases, their physical condition is very poor; in fact, deterioration often sets in. In many cases, hospitalization is necessary if a cure is to be effected.
  Much of the progress in treating alcoholism and drug addiction has been made possible by the recognition that these are diseases, not crimes (although crimes are often committed by addicts). They have physical as well as psychological aspects, and there is growing belief that chemical abnormalities within the body may play a significant role. Also, alcoholism and drug addiction are recognized as social problems.