Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Addiction
Addiction is a strong mental and physical dependence on, most
commonly, a drug or other substance. Some substances that can lead to addiction
are alcohol, illegal drugs, some prescription medicines, inhalants (such as
spray paint), and nicotine.
A person with an addiction usually has three or more of the following
signs and symptoms:
Most people with addictions also have strong cravings for the drug
The tendency to have addiction problems can be passed from parents
to their children (inherited). This tendency often is accompanied by mental
health problems, such as depression.
Current as of:
November 20, 2015
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Peter Monti, PhD - Alcohol and Addiction
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.