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Date of this Version



Alcohol Alert, #76, July 2008. Published in U.S. Department of Health& Human Services, National Institutes of Health National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.


Addictive disorders represent a major health issue both in the United States and worldwide. Because alcohol and drug dependence are likely to co-occur, exploring how alcohol addiction may relate to and interact with other addictions is important. Current research is exploring the underlying causes of addiction, and why alcohol and other drug use disorders co-occur so frequently, as well as how behavioral and drug therapies can best treat these disorders. There is no “magic bullet” for treating addiction—no treatment will work for everyone in every situation. More research is needed to identify effective treatments for different populations, especially youth, older people, and patients with co-occurring psychiatric disorders. Such research is vital to better understand the mechanisms and course of addiction as well as its diagnosis and treatment.

Epidemiology: How Common is Alcohol and Other Drug Addiction?
The Genetics of Alcohol and Other Drug Use Disorders – Shared Risk Factors?
Diagnosing Substance Use Disorders: Barriers and Challenges
The Terminology of Addiction

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