September is Alcohol and Drug Addiction Month. Drug addiction is a prevalent problem in the United States and even more so in Tennessee. In 2007-2008, Tennessee was first among all states for non-medical use of pain relievers among people over the age of 26. Our drug induced death rate is higher than the national average, and prescription pain relievers are by far the most abused substance.
Most people do not understand addiction. Many well-meaning people assume drug abusers lack morals or will-power—that they could simply stop if they wanted to. In reality, addiction is a disease that is chronic in nature and quitting takes far more than good intentions.