Addiction is a divisive subject in the world of mental health care.

Some people consider it a mental illness and others think it is the conscious decision of a person. There are countries where someone who has substance addiction is allowed to get treatment at the same level as any other mental illness. There are others where it is a crime and people with it stand to be prosecuted under the nation’s laws. Yet, the DSM and ICD include addiction disorders in their list of mental disorders.

Many people feel that those who are addicted to substances are a burden on the whole family. Those who believe that itis a mental illness think that they need our support and compassion in fighting this ‘illness’.

What do you think?

Is addiction a mental illness that can be cured or is it a personality trait that should be prosecuted by law?

Where do we draw the line between a crime and an illness?