Drug addictions are problems that affect millions of people in the United States and recognizing addiction in a loved one is a good way to bring these numbers down. Addictions affect many of the world’s youth as well as adults. Additionally, no race or economic class has been able to escape addiction.
To begin, we will look at some facts about addiction:
- Twenty-four percent of the people in England and Whales use powered cocaine.
- More than 22 million Americans use illegal drugs.
- More than 23.5 million Americans need treatment for drug addictions.
- Only 2.6 million Americans are receiving the treatment they need for drug addiction.
- More than 300,000 people in England use crack or opiates.
- More than 200,000 people in England are in treatment for drug addiction.
Given these numbers, it is not difficult to imagine that your loved one could be experimenting with drugs.
Drugs That Cause Addiction in Loved Ones
Many types of drugs exist to which people become addicted. For example:
- Vicodin, Percocet, OxyContin, Demerol, and Methadone are examples of other opiate drugs. Prescription opiates are prescribed by doctors for severe pain, and they are highly addictive.
- Cannabis, which is also known as weed and grass, is the most common type of illegal substance that people use. Research has shown that this drug does cause withdrawal symptoms that would constitute a drug addiction, but almost no one ever receives treatment for being addicted to it. Users enjoy smoking cannabis because it changes the chemicals in the brain in such a way that invokes relaxation, laughter, sexual arousal and hunger. Some people with mental disorders attest that cannabis helps them to balance, while others enjoy it because it makes them appear happy.
- Opiates or narcotics are drugs that manufacturers develop from the poppy seed. The primary purpose for these types of drugs is to relieve pain. They work by binding themselves to the brain’s receptors and blocking out the pain response. Some examples of opiates are morphine, opium, and codeine.
- Cocaine is a stimulant drug that comes in a powered or rock shaped form. When a person uses this drug, he or she will become more alert, energetic and overly confident. The “high” that comes from cocaine only lasts approximately 15-30 minutes, which prompts the user to continue seeking such a high.
- Methamphetamine is a powerful stimulant that also comes in powdered or crystallized forms. This drug increases awareness and sexual desires, but in very high doses, it can cause a person to stay awake for days and develop an overly inflated sense of self.
Other Types of Addictive Substances
Heroin is an opioid that comes in a powdered form. There is no medicinal usage for this drug. People who obtain this substance are solely using it for illegal purposes. The draw that makes opiates so addicting is the feeling of euphoria that comes along with them. The people who use it long to have their emotional and physical pain disappear. These opiates are capable of taking such pain away and leaving the individual with a temporary feeling of extreme content and serenity.
Other types of substances to which people become addicted are barbiturates such as Seconal, benzodiazepines such as Xanax, Ecstasy, diet pills, aerosol, hallucinogens such as psilocybin, and the almighty alcohol. Alcohol is still one of the most dangerous substances as far as addiction development because society has decided to legalize it. Because the media advertises alcohol as being a fun product, not many people realize how addicting it is or how painful the withdrawal effects can be.
Nicotine is also an addictive substance, although no treatment facilities acknowledge it as a problem that requires institutional care. Billions of people are addicted to nicotine and continue to smoke cigarettes on a daily basis.
How Drug Addictions Begin
Drug addictions begin in a wide variety of ways. One person may become innocently addicted to a prescription pain medication the doctor prescribed for a legitimate ailment. Another person may try cocaine with her closest friends after school or work. A young person may consume alcohol at a party or while his or her parents are not home. A totally unrelated party may take ecstasy or smoke cannabis to escape from the stress of work or a dysfunctional family life. A college student might start using methamphetamine to stay up late to complete projects.
Consuming the substance may seem fun at first, and it may provide a temporary resolution for a problem such as pain or depression. However, after the body becomes accustomed to the drug’s absorption, it will look for daily consumptions to function properly. Without the drug, the body will react in a negative fashion, and the person may have to deal with painful withdrawal symptoms that prompt him or her to engage in drug seeking activities. Examples of drug withdrawal symptoms are muscle pain and spasms, sweating, nausea, diarrhea, restless leg syndrome, migraines, depression, anxiety, and psychosis.
People Who are Most Susceptible to Drug Addictions
The people who are most vulnerable to developing drug addictions are those who have mental illnesses, emotional problems, and dysfunctional relationships. Some mentally ill drug users engage in such activities because it is an inexpensive way for them to find balance. People with troubled pasts and dysfunctional family relations use drugs because it gives them an opportunity not to feel past pains or think about bad events. Some people have a greater tendency to develop an addiction because of genetics. However, anyone can develop an addiction, regardless of any predetermining factors.
Behaviors of Someone With a Drug Addiction
Friends and family members may wonder if one of their loved ones or close acquaintances has a problem with drugs. One of the best ways to tell if a person is using is to monitor his or her behaviors. A person with an addiction will be mysterious and scarce. This person may not show up to work or family events because of drug seeking. He or she may stay up very late and sleep all day as well. Additionally, the person may be extremely irritable when questioned about a possible drug problem. In some cases, the person will change his or her circle of friends or get involved in criminal activities to support the habit.
Getting Help for Drug Addictions
Help for drug addictions is available at many rehabilitation facilities. Such facilities provide a wealth of services that will assist a person to develop a more positive style of living. A facility that has inpatient treatment is one of the best options. Inpatient treatment gives the addicted party a chance to change the existing environment and surround himself or herself with positive, supportive people.
To begin treatment at an inpatient treatment center, an addicted person or concerned party can contact a nearby center. Well-trained and friendly staff members will greet the person with open ears and arms and try to guide that person toward the light of hope. Drug addictions do not have to defeat a people forever. Anyone can conquer an addiction with the right tools, mindset, and moral support. If you need help recognizing addiction in a loved one, please call today and let us assist you in selecting a treatment program especially for their needs.