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Who Drug Addiction Affects
Drug addiction not only affects the user, it affects their friends, families, coworkers, and anyone else they associate with. It breaks bonds between the user and their loved ones, which makes it even harder for the user to seek out help.
Drug addiction is a detrimental disease that affects the user’s mind, body, feelings, and actions. Families and relationships are destroyed due to constant, daily, or even recreational drug use. When someone abuses drugs, they are not the same person as they once were. Their priorities and desires are very different. Drug addiction changes you as a person in every way possible, which is why it is so important to get help before it completely changes your life forever.
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Populations at Special Risk of Drug Addiction
Teenage Drug Addiction
The teenage years are very stressful. Your body is constantly changing, and you are just trying to fit in with the rest of the crowd. However, the desire to fit in puts any teen at risk to succumbing to peer pressure on drugs.
Being that drugs bring new experiences for them, teens try out different substances just to see what it might feel like or to conform to what their friends are doing. Experimenting with drugs is not necessarily a drug addiction, but it is often the first step.
Teen drug experimentation often leads to:
- Use of other, harsher drugs
- Continued drug use leading into adulthood
- Less time spent with family
- Losing good friendships and positive influences
- Associating with negative influences
- Pushing school aside and focusing on drugs
College Drug Addiction
Those who were smart enough to decline drugs in high school might have a hard time keeping the promise to refuse drugs once they move away for college. They don’t have their good friends and family there to support them and might give in to taking drugs in order to make new friends.
College is known as the party after high school when you are old enough to actually buy drugs (such as alcohol or nicotine) and thus abuse this privilege.
Abusing drugs at this age can form habits such as:
- Skipping school to do drugs
- Procrastinating on important assignments
- Communicating less with family
- Trying out new, more intense drugs
- Breaking off old friendships
- Committing crimes
Professional Drug Addiction
Professionals who are addicted to drugs don’t only affect their friends and families, they affect the entire workplace around them. Their work begins to slip, they lose track of clients and what needs to be done, and in the end are unable to perform their job duties. This can result in suspension at their job, or even worse, losing their job altogether.
The professional world can be a stressful environment with constant deadlines, angry clients, and pressure to keep it all together. Turning to drugs to deal with the troubles of your profession is not a healthy or efficient way to reduce stress.
Some might think “Popping a few Adderalls to stay focused or a Xanax to relax after a long day of work would never lead to anything.” Many think these actions are normal. Unfortunately, as these coping mechanisms turn into habits, a drug addiction is sure to follow.
Senior Citizen Drug Addiction
Although it is not widely discussed, many senior citizens abuse their medications and other drugs for reasons that may include:
- Therapeutic purposes
- Unintentional abuse due to memory loss
- Trouble sleeping
- Tolerance to medication
Senior citizen drug abuse is not to be taken lightly. It is easy for them to get addicted due to the wide availability and selection of drugs. If you suspect an older loved one is abusing medications, talk to their doctor about a lower dose and supervise their medicines.
Veteran Drug Addiction
A main reason why veterans abuse drugs is to cope with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a very common problem in Veterans and can alter their daily life; however, drug addiction can do the same. Abusing drugs is not an efficient way to deal with PTSD. It could potentially make the situation and feelings worse, which is why it is important to seek help as soon as possible.
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LGBTQ Drug Addiction
The LGBTQ Community consists of individuals of all ages and backgrounds who are constantly struggling with challenges regarding discrimination, rejection, and even hate crimes. Many of these challenges are extremely hard to face, leading to drug abuse and addiction. This is especially the case for LGBTQ youths who have been rejected or abandoned by their families as a result of their sexual orientation.
Psychological or emotional issues may influence drug abuse as well. Common issues include:
- High volumes of stress
- Major depression
- Intense feelings of anxiety
- Feelings of rejection or feeling alone
Drug abuse does not make these issues disappear. In fact, it can make many more issues appear and damage relationships even farther.
Medical Professional Drug Addiction
Although many medical professionals know the consequences of the drugs they abuse, many find it hard to cope with their profession and thus abuse drugs to deal with the intense daily decisions.
Although there is a high rate of drug abuse within the medical field, the success rate of those who seek treatment is substantial. Some might be afraid to be reported if they were to seek out help for abusing drugs. However, if they don’t seek help, they could in fact lose their license.
Female Drug Addiction
Although statistics show males might abuse drugs more often than females, females tend to start with small doses and then rapidly increase use. Females also often find it more difficult to quit their addiction than males.
It may be easier to tell if a woman has an addiction rather than a man. Men tend to be more secretive about these issues while women tend to be more open, which could be a cry for help. If you notice a female loved one abusing their medications, alcohol, or any other drug, please seek out help.
Parent Drug Addiction
As a parent, drug addiction intensely affects your spouse and your children’s lives. Your children learn from you and mimic your behavior. If you are addicted to drugs, they are much more likely to follow the same habit.
Your actions affect the world around you, not just yourself. If you are addicted, please seek out help, not only for yourself, but for the health of your family as well.
Seeking Treatment for Drug Addiction
No matter who you are or what drug you are addicted to, addiction brings a negative impact to those surrounding you. Seeking out help is the first step to mending the relationships broken by drug abuse. It’s not too late. Seek out help today.
What are you struggling with?
There are many different forms of addiction. Get the information you need to help you overcome yours.