Understanding Contributing Factors and Causes of Drug Addiction

Drugs are basic elements of modern medicine. It’s difficult to imagine how infections can be treated, pain relieved, and depression alleviated without drugs. Each day, many lives are saved because of drugs. Even the seemingly insignificant problem of not being able to sleep can be solved with the use of drugs.

Indeed, drugs are life savers if used properly. But when abused or used illicitly, they can be “life takers.” The effects of drug addiction bring havoc to the user himself, to his family, and to society in general. While it’s true that the drugs which are subject to abuse keep getting stronger, even the prescription medications are not spared by illicit drug users.

Drug addiction causes severe harm to the body. This is an oft-repeated statement and no one disagrees with it. But what exactly are the causes of drug addiction?

In many respects, the answers to this question – which are supposed to shed light on the nature of the problem – are rather complicated. It is known that repeated use of certain substances can result to the user becoming dependent on them. This is most certain in the case of illicit drugs.

There are basically two kinds of dependence associated with drug addiction; physical dependence and psychological dependence. In physical dependence, the drug user has developed tolerance to the drug. This means that the doses the user takes become larger and larger, so that the level of “high” he experiences remains the same. The opiates (morphine and heroin) are perfect examples in this case.

Psychological dependence on a drug, on the other hand, is characterized by a compulsive emotional need for the drug. The cannabis (marijuana and hashish) may be used as examples in this instance.

Medical and scientific researches have come to the conclusion that drug addiction is both physical and psychological dependence; both have a biochemical basis on the brain, although the distinction between them is not very clear. This, perhaps, is the reason why today’s interpretation of the term “drug addiction” has been made rather easy to understand: It relates to a behavioral pattern that is characterized by compulsive use of a drug and an extreme concern with obtaining it.

There are also suggestions that having an “addictive personality” may contribute to a person becoming addicted to drugs. This means that a person’s tendency towards drug addiction may be determined by his physiological and biochemical makeup. In other words, the said tendency can be genetically inherited. But this factor needs further explaining; thus, a person with an addictive personality has probably inherited some factors that heighten vulnerability but do not make it inevitable that addiction to drugs will happen.

Psychological and environmental factors are those often linked to the occurrence of drug addiction. We have heard of many cases of people being driven to drug abuse because of problems in the family, poor living conditions, lack of confidence in oneself, social pressures, and stress. Of course, these factors alone do not make drug addiction incapable of being evaded.

The Causes of Drug Abuse

People are under the misconception that there are millions of causes of drug abuse, but let me tell you that from my own experiences in the drug world, that all of these causes can easily be brought back to a basic foundation which covers them all in a far simpler way, a way which if used correctly will be able to help many people recover from addiction.

I actually find it quite scary when I look at all of the causes for drug abuse which get listed, the reason for this is that for a very large part of my life I too was an addict and believe me I blamed everyone and everything for my addiction problems, it was as simple as that, the world and everything within it was to blame for my condition.

Now, I ask you, is this not very typical of every aspect of our modern society? We will look for every reason under the sun to heap our misfortune onto the shoulders of others. Whether it be when it comes to the causes of drug addiction, our financial situation or whatever the situation at hand may be, it is simply never our own fault.

It is this lack of responsibility, our willingness to entrust our own future into the hands of others, the ‘experts and gurus’ which in my opinion is one of the main causes of drug abuse and many other areas of discomfort in our lives. It is only when you are able to face and challenge your inner self that you once again understand the true meaning of responsibility and how it can help you to overcome the problems which might seem incredibly huge.

I know for a fact that it was only when I hit an absolute cross road in my own life that the causes of drug abuse, my own addiction, made themselves apparent. Had I chosen to shirk the responsibility which I needed in order to get clean and stay clean at that stage, my life would surely have ended in disaster.

Everyone is so busy looking for the best therapist, the best rehab program or the best doctors in order to beat their addiction, well let me as a recovering junkie tell you that in order to overcome the causes of drug abuse, we are all more than well enough equipped with the inner strength and energy to beat our addictions from within without needing all of these expensive treatments.

I entered only one institution, not even a real rehab, more of a stabilization center and from that day on I was able to leave over a decade of drug abuse and addiction behind me and it is now 10 years down the line and I am still clean. So if you are looking for causes of drug abuse, rather begin to make peace with your inner self, herein lays the answer to all of these ’causes’.

Brain Health And Teen Drug Addiction – Why One Drug Leads To Another

What chance does a teenager have to avoid the “drug tentacles” reaching into every crack and crevasse of American society? Drug addiction and drug abuse are not simply about “street drugs” sold by nefarious persons to innocent victims. Both illegal and legally prescribed drugs mimic each other in the many in which they exploit the structure or neurobiology of the user’s brain. The bad news is that teenagers have free-and-easy access to any number of mind-bending mood altering substances.

The money culture of America has created an “open hunting season” for access and “market share” of Americans’ consciousness by alcohol, tobacco and drug marketers of all ilk and stripe.

Beer and spirits ads promote brand use, yet finish with “drink responsibly” throwaway lines, as though the millions of kids and adults might “just have one”.

Smoking and cancer are proven bed-fellows, yet brand sellers “pitch” their products, while placing label warnings and even advertising their “stop smoking” web sites.

Last but certainly not least are the research and pharmaceutical firms, embracing FDA approvals for distributing all manner of body and mood-altering drugs.

The intersection between government and money interests simply rubber stamps the “she’ll be right, Mate” attitude towards creeping drug addiction. Everyone has seen the somber and chilling TV ads about “Just Say No To Drugs” government campaigns to build awareness of teenage drug addiction, as well as law enforcement muscle applied to illegal drugs trafficking. To what impact? Precious little, as drug addiction and drug abuse proliferate across all age groups and economic classes.

Sign Of Drug Addiction – What To Look For

At its core, teen drug addiction describes an inner drive, and an inner void, towards self-medicating. Why? Alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin and crack swamp the teen’s mind, diffusing anxiety while creating a distanced abstracted “dream like” safety space from the press of reality.

* Physical Signs

Your teen shifts towards an out-of-phase approach towards eating and sleep. Food tastes change, cravings pointing towards intense high caloric sweets and fats. Sleep disorders prevail, with late nights and impossible mornings the new order. Weight gains are interchangeable with weight loss as eating disorders slowly surface. Concentration lapses, missing school work and poor grades. Beginning with headaches and dizziness, physical sign of drug addiction can suddenly “blow up” into a full scale anxiety panic attack.

* Anti Social Behavior

For allegedly “normal” teens, all parents are “pathetic and lame”. Add drug use and hostility and suspicion towards parents becomes legion. Teen drug addiction amplifies the normal tendency towards intense secretiveness. Many parents, and even brothers and sisters, are the last to know that a teen “in the next room” has created a life threatening drug addiction. To be a teen is to be a master of the “cover up”.

Cause Of Drug Addiction – Contributing Factors

Peer pressure, stress, struggling self-esteem and identity issues, feeling of worthlessness, inability to manage the whipsaw of daily emotions, body changes and pressure to look a certain way, sex, parental pressures, parental neglect. Any one, or combination of factors, can become a cause of drug addiction once use begins and overwhelms a teenager.

Neither a teen nor her parents will typically “catch” the early signs in time before the snowballing effect of daily drug use radiates into a major drug abuse life crisis requiring aggressive professional intervention for drug addiction treatment of the mind and body. For parents, Hell’s door has just opened as they struggle to learn new attitudes towards their child, and to admit that they “no longer know” their child.

Knowledge Of Brain Changes Key To Drug Addiction Recovery

Consider the staggering complexity of our brains, with over 10 billion individual brain cells each with over 20,000 separate and unique synapse-links to other cells and a neural “roadway” of 4 million miles of nerve fibers.

* Drugs Create Unique Homes In The Brain

All substances, drugs included, travel along unique neurological “pathways”. So-called receptor sites become temporarily “occupied” by drug compounds, creating a short-lived “feel good” mood altering impact. Responding to external pressures, the teen “self medicates” in order to re-create that safety zone. The Catch 22 for all drug users is that they lack the ability to self-analyze and resolve psychological issues, and their self-medication only buries them deeper inside the very problems they’re trying to resolve. This is the inevitability, steep slope and snowballing reality of teenage drug addiction.

* Brain Adapts – Drug Use Increases In Search Of The “High”

Brain receptor sites adapt over time. Result? Starter drugs no longer create the “same high”. Teen response? Experiment and find another, more powerful drug. The cycle of brain adaptation and intensifying drug usage creates a downward spiral of increasing drug addiction, where withdrawal stresses produce a bio-chemical flow of demand for more drugs and shorter intervals.