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Changing the Language of Addiction

This document draws attention to terminology that may cause confusion or perpetuate stigma around substance use disorders. It is not intended to serve as a glossary of clinical terminology, nor does it offer a comprehensive list of all the potentially stigmatizing words used in association with substance use disorders. In addition, while this document aims to promote non-stigmatizing language in the Federal Government, individuals who have substance use disorders or those in recovery may choose to identify themselves with different terminology.