What is addiction?

Addiction, now more commonly known as substance use disorder, is a pervasive and chronic medical disease. It is complex as it results from the unique interaction of an individual’s genetics, brain chemistry, life experiences and environment. Because of the complexity of one’s substance use and addictive behaviors, the path to substance use is unique and individual. Some individuals may have started through recreational use of illegal drugs or alcohol; others may have initially been prescribed pain relief through their doctor. A history of substance use may exist in some families and not in others.

Though the paths to substance use are individual, the outcomes of substance use disorder are similar. Drugs and alcohol target the pleasure centers of the brain, co-opting brain chemistry and potentially contributing to behaviors that jeopardize work and relationships. Cravings for a substance can increase to the point of going to extraordinary efforts to seek the substance while risking negative consequences. Some of this effort can be to avoid the physical sickness one can feel if the person doesn’t have the substance.

However, because substance use disorder is a medical disease, it is treatable. Recovery from it is possible. Because each individual’s path to substance use is influenced by their uniqueness as an individual, there are multiple paths to recovery, including treatment centers in and around Indianapolis.

The Central Indiana Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Center (CARC) is committed to helping Marion County residents or their loved ones connect with the recovery path that is appropriate for them. These paths are within a continuum of care that include intensive treatment, outpatient clinic-based therapies, residential settings, peer-driven support, and medication-assisted treatment. If you’re unsure whether to seek help for problematic use, please click on next steps below.


Please call the CARC at 833-533-2272 to discuss
how you can begin your path to recovery.