What is Addiction?

Addiction refers to a wide range of compulsive behaviors. Traditionally, addiction refers to the excessive use of substances, including alcohol; prescription and illegal drugs; cigarettes; and food. Today addiction has a wider meaning for children and adolescents. It also includes an out-of-control attachment to the Internet and video games. To pornographic violence and sex. Even to texting on cell phones. Behavior goes from normal to addictive when it becomes an uncontrollable habit. Once it becomes an addiction, that habit can lead to negative and harmful consequences.

Learn More About Addiction


Addiction: A Real Disease

Addiction is a real disease. It is not a weakness. Or an easy thing to overcome just by willpower. Virtually, all addictions start during adolescence. Almost 4 million 12-25 year olds have a drug abuse problem in the United States — but only 9 percent get any sort of treatment.

Substance Abuse: Hannah's Story

The earlier children are exposed to opiates, the higher their chances of addiction. And, opiates are becoming more and more potent and addictive. We need to come together to combat this trend.

Talking to Kids About Durgs

How to Talk to Your Kids About Drugs

There are many challenges faced by parents as their children develop; one important concern is how to raise kids to not use drugs.

Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse: Are You Worried Your Teen May Using?

You are not alone. The media is exploding with information on opioid overdoses, and the debate about the legalization of marijuana wages on. Here are a few important things to know about teen substance abuse. More teens that not have used alcohol.

Teenager with Addiction

Is Your Child Abusing Drugs or Alcohol?

How can parents help their children make healthy decisions in their lives? Family discussions about the negative consequences of alcohol and other drug use should occur early in childhood.


JUULing: What Parents Need to Know About the Latest Teen Trend

If you are the parent of a middle or high school student, you know there’s a new trend every month, if not more often. Recently, JUULs (pronounced like jewels) and JUULing have become all the rage.

Preventing and Treating Addiction in Youth

Breaking the Cycle: Preventing and Treating Addiction in Youth

Virtually all addictions begin during adolescence. And nearly 4 million 12-25 year olds in the United States have a substance abuse problem, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Getting Sober: Patients

You have been admitted to the hospital for opiate detoxification. This treatment, commonly called “detox”, is to help free an addict from his or her drug habit.

Signs Your Child May Need Therapy

Signs Your Child May Need Therapy

Gina McDowell gives us the obvious and not so obvious signs a child may need therapy.


Stop Smoking

This page provides tips and resources to help you stop smoking.

Opioid Safety

Opioid Safety

While opioids are an effective option for pain relief following surgery or for the treatment of a chronic condition, they can also lead to addictive behavior and substance abuse problems if not properly managed and stored. Nationwide Children’s is dedicated to providing education and resources to help patients, parents and physicians safely prescribe, use, and dispose of opioids.