Drug Addiction Punishment

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Drug Addiction : Treatment or Punishment?
When a person takes a drug the chemicals affect the brain by interfering with how the neurons send messages. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the structure of Marijuana and Heroin mimic a natural neurotransmitter which tricks the receptors into allowing the drug to activate neurons inside the brain which interferes with messages and leads to abnormalities of behavior. With other drugs such as cocaine there is an abnormally large amount of neurotransmitters released which disrupts communication channels. Drug abuse can rewire brain connections, decrease synapse activity and cause addiction. The American Psychiatric Association says that addiction is a complex condition, and a brain disease that is manifested by compulsive substance use despite harmful consequence. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) found that 21.5 million American adults (aged 12 and older) battled a substance use disorder in 2014. Addiction to drugs has been a growing issue in America, and is causing jails to become overcrowded. The Bureau of Justice Statistics found that more than half of federal prisoners were incarcerated for drug crimes in 2010. This leads to the question of whether the justice system is doing an adequate job of dealing with drug addiction. Instead of incarcerating people for drug abuse, an alternative is treating victims by rehab and treatment. This paper will exam why treatment is the superior option for

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