Cover image for The addiction solution : treating our dependence on opioids and other drugs / by Lloyd I. Sederer, MD.
The addiction solution : treating our dependence on opioids and other drugs / by Lloyd I. Sederer, MD.

First Scribner hardcover edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Scribner, 2018.

Physical Description:
xiii, 226 pages ; 22 cm
Ten things that matter -- Dimensions of character -- Fail first -- An ounce or a ton? -- Meaningful engagement and alternatives -- Principles of treatment -- What comes next -- The painted bird -- Tom's story -- Appendix: A brief history of opioid use and abuse in America.
Offers an examination of drug use, abuse, and treatment, offering clinical and scientific knowledge, case studies, and policy suggestions intended to help drug users, their families, and communities deal with the problem.


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
362.29 SED Book Adult General Collection

On Order



A groundbreaking examination of addiction from a psychiatrist and public health doctor, offering practical, proven solutions for individuals, families, and communities dealing with substance use and abuse.

Written with warmth, accessibility, and vast authority, The Addiction Solution is a practical guide through the world of drug use and abuse and addiction treatment. Here, Lloyd I. Sederer, MD, brings together scientific and clinical knowledge, policy suggestions, and case studies to describe our current drug crisis and establish a clear path forward to recovery and health. In a time when so many people are affected by the addiction epidemic, when 142 people die of overdoses every day in the United States, principally from opioids, Sederer's decades of wisdom and clinical experience are needed more than ever before.

With a timely focus on opioids, Sederer takes us through the proven essentials of addiction treatment and explains why so many of our current policies, like the lingering remnants of the War on Drugs, fail to help drug users, their families, and their wider communities. He identifies a key insight, often overlooked in popular and professional writing about addiction and its treatment: namely, that people who use drugs do so to meet specific needs, and that drugs may be the best solution those people currently have. Writing with generosity and empathy about the many Americans who use illicit and prescribed substances, Sederer lays out specific, evidence-based, researched solutions to the prevention and problems of drug use, including exercise, medications, therapy, recovery programs, and community services. In this challenging time, The Addiction Solution provides practical help, comfort, and hope.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Sederer, psychiatrist and New York State chief mental-health officer, elucidates the complexities of addiction in this scholarly and informative book. The information provided is weighty and acronyms abound, but plentiful human stories of addiction and recovery from the author's practice and from popular culture-Billie Holiday (a heroin addict) and Bruce Springsteen (the son of an alcoholic) appear-lighten the impact of the profusion of facts. Part one begins with 10 factors, such as drug potency and purity and user age, that influence whether an individual will interact with a psychoactive substance as a "chipper"-an occasional, unaddicted user-or addict. Part two examines prevailing public-policy approaches for prevention, and part three looks at principles of treatment and summarizes the many kinds that can be effective. Sederer leaves his audience with the pragmatic understanding that addiction is a multifactorial disease and that its prevention and treatment require a comprehensive approach based on the individual's circumstances and character traits. For readers interested in understanding current thought on addiction, prevention, and recovery, the book will prove invaluable. (May) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

Sederer (chief medical -officer, New York Office of Mental Health) argues that the United States is failing to control an addiction epidemic through "a dogged attachment to ideas and efforts that have not worked" rather than an evidence-based, public health approach. In this brief, readable overview, the author discusses factors that contribute to addiction, failed approaches, prevention, current treatments, and future directions. He portrays addiction as a complex illness-not a moral failing-that responds best to a combination of treatments tailored to an individual patient. Modalities discussed include (but are not limited to) medication, 12-step programs, mindfulness, and even LSD as an experimental treatment. He declares punitive or judgmental methods ineffective and advocates instead for "prevention, early intervention, [and] effective and comprehensive treatment programs," as well as "a cultural shift" toward understanding addiction's medical, psychological, and social aspects. Most of the writing is accessible to an educated lay audience, but the level of detail and extensive references make this useful for medical professionals needing further education on the subject. VERDICT Enriched with patient case studies that illustrate the complex nature of this disease, Sederer's balanced and compassionate approach makes this a valuable addition to the conversation on this timely topic.-Janet Crum, Northern Arizona Univ. Lib., Flagstaff © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Author's Notep. ix
Introductionp. 1
Part 1 What Counts
Chapter 1 Ten Things That Matterp. 11
Chapter 2 Dimensions of Characterp. 30
Chapter 3 Fail Firstp. 43
Part 2 How To Succeed
Chapter 4 An Ounce or a Ton?p. 59
Chapter 5 Meaningful Engagement and Alternativesp. 72
Chapter 6 Principles of Treatmentp. 86
Chapter 7 What Comes Nextp. 146
Chapter 8 The Painted Birdp. 155
Part 3 Closing Thoughts
Chapter 9 Tom's Storyp. 167
Appendix: A Brief History of Opioid Use and Abuse in Americap. 175
Books That May Be of Interestp. 189
Notesp. 193
Indexp. 207