Stigma and Addiction

The Truth About Addiction

Truth: For centuries, addiction has thought of as a moral failing. Modern science has shown us that, in reality, it is a complex, chronic disease that changes the brain. People living with addiction are worthy of dignity, respect and treatment.

Truth: Will power is not enough to overcome addiction. Recovery is possible with treatment, counseling, support and community.

Truth: In 2018, 20.3 million adults, or 8.4 percent of the U.S. population had a substance use disorder. Any person from any background is susceptible to addiction. It comes in many forms. Drugs and alcohol are one side of addiction. There also “process addictions,” including gambling, exercise, food, and shopping.

Truth: Recovery is a learning process. Relapse sometimes happens, but does not someone won’t be able to overcome addiction in the long run. People experiencing a relapse often feel a deep sense of shame.