Gateway drug theory  

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Gateway drug theory (alternatively, stepping-stone theory, escalation hypothesis, or progression hypothesis) is a comprehensive catchphrase for the theory that the use of a psychoactive drug can be coupled to an increased probability of the use of further drugs. Possible causes are biological alterations in the brain due to the earlier drug and similar attitudes of users across different drugs (common liability to addiction). Scientific investigation of the possible causes is considered important for health policy concerning education and law making.

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