Understanding Where Drug Addiction and Substance Abuse Stems From

causes of drug abuse

Studies conducted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the National Institutes of Health revealed that more than 23 million U.S. adults have suffered from drug addiction and substance abuse. The more heartbreaking findings suggest that more than 75% of those individuals don't receive the necessary, or even any, treatment to help them through their addiction.

Drug abuse and addiction is a serious problem that so many people have and continue to struggle with. While those who have never had to deal with the consequences of addiction see it has bad life choices, it's far more complicated than that.

The causes of drug abuse are varied and complex. Keep reading to learn what some of them might be for the people in your life who suffer from addiction.

The Genes You're Born With

To increase addiction awareness it's important to discuss all the possible causes of drug abuse and learn where these addictions stem from. While biology isn't always the answer to all of your characteristics and medical issues, it does account for some things.

Your genes can give you a higher risk of developing a drug addiction if a parent or family member also struggles or has struggled with abusing drugs or alcohol. Factors that you wouldn't think matter at all can also contribute to your risk of developing an addiction. Your ethnicity and gender can also be an indicator of your risk for developing an addiction to drugs.

They Make You Feel Great in the Moment

As simple as it sounds, one of the causes of drug abuse could stem from how they made you feel in the moment you first tried them and how they continue to make you feel. Chasing the high that people experience from drugs can lead to addiction and a person that will do whatever it takes to get it.

People can also begin to abuse drugs because of how confident and powerful drugs makes them feel. You might not know how to achieve that level of confidence in healthy ways and if drugs give you that feeling, it could be hard to turn away from them.

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The Environment You Grow up in

One of the reasons why people take drugs has a lot to do with the environment in which they grow up and what they grow up around. The people you're surrounded by as you grow up and the people you choose to surround yourself by as you get older can influence whether or not you start to abuse drugs.

The neighborhood in which you grow up and your socioeconomic status can also influence your risk of developing an addiction to drugs. Early life traumas like physical or sexual abuse or lack of parental support are also reasons why someone becomes addicted to drugs.

They Can Help You Manage Life

Life can be hard and sometimes you might need some help dealing with it. There are plenty of healthy ways of dealing with stresses of life but some people end up turning to drugs, which can lead to addiction.

People may be drawn to drugs because of the energy it gives them or how it helps them relax as nothing else can. The problem is that these behaviors can lead to drug abuse and addiction.

Struggling with other mental health issues can also be the reason that someone begins abusing drugs. Dealing with mental illnesses like anxiety and depression is incredibly difficult and people may find themselves turning to drugs to help manage what they're going through.

Starting Early in Life

Why do some people get addicted to drugs? Starting drugs at an early, developmental stage of life can lead to addiction.

Whether you start taking drugs at 15 or 50, you'll always have a risk of becoming addicted. However, there is evidence that starting early in teenhood can more easily lead to addiction.

Addiction is defined as not only a disorder that makes you act differently, but one that completely alters your brain chemistry. Teenagers' brains are still developing and so starting to do drugs during those early years can lead them to develop an addiction much easier.

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They Help You Improve in Certain Areas of Life

There are certain drugs known to help you improve in certain areas. Some addictive drugs can improve your athletic performance or help you do better in school and that's definitely why some might go on to abuse those drugs.

People may think there is no other way to improve without the help of those drugs so they continue to abuse them and eventually become addicted to them. They might use them to try to keep up with the pressure of performing well or to try to cheat their way to top.

You Want to Try Something New

Drug addiction and abuse can simply stem from a person wanting to try something new and falling down a path they didn't expect. People want to feel a part of the culture around them and connect with the people in their life, and if drugs are part of that then they might feel the pressure to participate.

Others might just be curious to try something new or experiment and have fun. That desire to have fun can lead to some severe consequences, however. Experimentation can often lead a person to an addiction they don't know how to handle.

Some of the Possible Causes of Drug Abuse

There are many causes of drug abuse and the list above includes some of the most common ones. Make sure you read some of our other blogs to learn more.

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