Causes of Drug Addiction

What Are The Causes of Drug Addiction?

The causes of drug addiction for any particular person are not always known, but there can be very helpful clues. One of the reasons drug addiction is so scary is because it can happen anywhere, any time, and to anyone. There is no one too good, too smart, or too anything to become dependent on drugs.

There’s no way to tell if someone will become addicted to drugs or not. That being said, there are definitely some factors that make certain people more susceptible to drug abuse and drug addiction. 

Some of the causes of drug addiction include:

  • A person's genetic make-up
  • The action of the drug itself
  • Peer pressure
  • Emotional distress
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Other mental health issues/disorders
  • Environmental stress

A lot of people experiment with drugs throughout their lifetime and do not become addicted. Some, however, may experiment with drugs and immediately become hooked. At first it may just be a mental obsession. However, before long, this can turn into a physical dependency.

Many people first try drugs because the people around them are experimenting with them or using them regularly. Peer pressure can often have a lot to do with a person’s thoughts and actions. This is not to say that someone can turn another person into a drug addict, but people can certainly influence each other to behave in certain ways.

Younger children are especially prone to peer pressure, and this may play a big part in teen drug abuse, which can lead to drug addiction.

Causes of Drug Addiction - Environmental & Genetic

Along the same lines, the environment in which a person is raised and lives can play a huge part in their attitudes and behaviors in regard to drug use. If a child is raised in a home where drug use or abuse is condoned, the child is more likely to use or abuse drugs himself. Additionally, if a person is raised in a very hectic and unstable environment that causes them a lot of emotional turmoil, this can lead a person to try and become addicted to drugs as well.

Causes of Drug Addition definitely include a genetic factor in drug addiction, but the environment can be just as influential. Just because addiction runs in your family or you have grown up around drug abuse does not mean you will become addicted. Some people see drug addiction in other people and stay as far away from drugs as possible because they know what kind of effect it can have on them. Unfortunately though, it is more common for people who grow up around addiction to become addicted themselves.

Mental Health Issues/ Mood Disorders

One of the most common causes of drug addiction and abuse is the presence of an emotional and/or mood disorder, such as depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, and schizophrenia. A lot of people with these disorders, diagnosed or not, will try to self-medicate with drugs and end up becoming addicted.

Sometimes a person will not know that he is depressed or has some other kind of disorder, but he knows that the only way that he feels better is to use drugs. The causes of drug addiction in a depressed or anxious person may seem obvious, but it's important to get to the root of the depression or anxiety.

Also among the causes of drug addiction is the fact that many people are often embarrassed or hesitant to see therapists and psychiatrists. Therefore, a lot of people aren’t properly diagnosed, and in turn aren’t properly medicated. They may feel that turning to illegal drugs, or obtaining prescription drugs illegally, is their only option.

It’s hard to be happy, get through each day, and be productive if you are feeling depressed or anxious or if you are having trouble stabilizing your mood. Instead of obtaining anti-anxiety drugs or antidepressants or whatever it is that is needed, people will turn to self-medication. This isn't always a conscious choice - a person tries drugs, realizes it makes them feel better, so they keep doing it. 

Causes of Drug Addiction - Misusing Prescribed Drugs

Another of the causes of drug addiction is due to misuse of prescription drugs. People are often prescribed drugs by their doctors, and before they know it, it can turn into a drug addiction.

Right before my first relapse, I had my wisdom teeth taken out, and the first thing my oral surgeon wanted to do was prescribe Percocet for me. I have heard of a lot of people who have had this happen and before they know it, they had developed a Percocet addiction or an oxycontin addiction.

I ended up taking the painkillers, which ultimately led to a relapse. 

Any time pain medication is prescribed, even for a short period of time, a painkiller addiction can develop. Your body can become dependent on drugs very quickly, and it can lead to abuse and addiction of certain drugs.

As you can see, there are many reasons people become addicted to drugs. Prescription drug addiction, drugs for anxiety, adderall addiction among young high school and college students who want to get by on very little sleep ...these are just a few of the many reasons people end up addicted to drugs. These drug addictions then become a chronic disease.

Drug addiction results in obsessive, drug-seeking behavior and drug use, even though the user may be aware of the negative impact that drugs are having on him and those around him.

Even if a person does not have a hereditary-linked cause of drug abuse and thus the original decision to use drugs was entirely voluntary, over time the brain changes. The repeated drug abuse can interfere with a person's self-control and reasoning ability and increase the desire to take drugs.

I hope we have given you some insight into the causes of drug addiction. Knowing the causes can perhaps help you know how to help someone you love or help you understand yourself if you have a drug problem. Of course, there is no substitute for receiving professional drug addiction help. 

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