Physical dependence vs addiction

Interesting in this unit is the difference between physical dependence and addiction. addiction: A disease process characterized by continued use of a specific psychoactive substance despite physical, psychological or social harm. physical dependence: Defined as a state in which an abstinence syndrome will occur if drug use is discontinued. Physical dependence is the result of neuroadaptive processes that take place in response to prolonged drug exposure. I would find it easy to pass judgement in a clinical setting having never been in that situation myself. Pain management and psychosis must be areas of great concern for physicians and nurses alike. In these circumstances, the whole picture must be realized and perhaps this is where psychological counseling should be a part of the treatment plan. I believe the health care field as a whole is beginning to realize the importance of not just treatment with drugs, but by more holistic approaches.

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