It's easy to look at the stunning model and actress Amber Valletta and assume that her life has been charmed.  But just this summer, Valletta admitted that during her rise to fame in the 1990s, she was a drug and alcohol addict.

"It's as slow and as painful and as horrifying as any other disease you could possibly succumb to," Gabel said. "People need to start thinking about it as a long-term terminal illness. Just like you would think about cancer. We're never going to be done with it. You're never in remission. And it's terminal if it’s not treated. People need to understand that and hold on tight. Just keep fighting."

For years, people with alcohol and drug problems have been referred to as alcoholics and addicts.

Society’s view was they were to blame for their lot in life because they lacked discipline or willpower. But over time, research determined addiction is much more complicated and, in fact, that addiction is a primary chronic disease of the brain influenced by genetics and environment.

Amy Winehouse sang about it in a Top 10 hit. Celebrities have embraced it as almost a rite of passage. And one former First Lady made it a key part of her legacy. We’re talking rehab, as in the process of undergoing extensive — and sometimes costly — treatment for substance abuse, often in an inpatient setting.

Kevin Kirby talks with radio talk show host Pat O'Brien about Face It TOGETHER. They also discuss the broken treatment system and explain why we need to educate physicians, and recognize addiction as a disease just as we do other health problems.

In it's third TEDx, TEDx Sioux Falls focused on how the city can "build with generosity and gratitude." How might our communities be different if approached through a perspective of generosity? How might our families be different if we communicate with gratitude? Face It TOGETHER Addiction Informatics Director, David Whitesock was a featured speaker.