What is a Substance Use Disorder

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Substance Use Disorders, also known as addiction, are a chronic brain condition that affects a person’s behaviors and makes it difficult for them to stop using alcohol and/or drugs.

It is not always clear who has, or will develop, a Substance Use Disorder, but it is important to know that:

  • It causes harmful and self-destructive behaviors.
  • It can affect anyone. However, some individuals are more at risk of developing a Substance Use Disorder than others.
  • It can be treated and managed, just like other chronic illnesses like asthma or diabetes.
  • Risk factors of developing this disorder include having a family history of substance use disorder, substance use at a young age, and a history of mental health disorder.

To learn more about Substance Use Disorder prevention and harm reduction visit a Los Angeles County CORE Center. For treatment services, please call the Los Angeles County Substance Abuse Service Helpline (SASH)
1 (844) 804-7500.

Call the Los Angeles County Substance Abuse Service Helpline (SASH) at 1 (844) 804-7500


County of los angeles California Public Health