The Truth of Drug Addiction

As Nathan Driskell once said, “Addiction is the only prison where the locks are on the inside.” Addiction is a common issue that numerous people don’t even consider. Over twenty million Americans under the age of eighteen are, or have been addicted to a type of drug. Drug abuse is a major concern despite a person’s race, gender, national origin, ethnicity, social status, or religion. Addictions can affect anyone, and are caused by a variety of reasons.

Some addiction is very simple but most is complex in the matter of how it can be treated or prevented. After much research and theorizing, it is believed that drug addiction can be described as a multi-faceted, case by case concern, and can be explained by numerous theories and treated or prevented by different avenues and interventions.

To begin, physical dependence theories suggest that drug use encompasses the user to continue taking the drugs, stop, go through withdrawals and then retake the drug in order to avoid withdrawal process. As stated, “In the late half of the 19th century, drug abuse was so widespread that Britain went to war twice with China to keep opium trade routes open, and these naturally became known as the Opium Wars. Cocaine was isolated in 1884 and quickly became yet another widespread drug of abuse heroin and other opiates were synthesized and marketed as non addictive alternatives to morphine” (Drug Abuse, 2018).

Of course, heroin did turn out to be extremely addictive, causing more people to abuse the drug. However, towards the 1970’s and 1980’s, a new theory came to the surface. As the American Addiction Center has said,”positive incentive theory of addiction.This theory focused on the euphoria like feeling that using a drug gave them. Between 1980 and 1984, for the first time cocaine users averaged 1.3 million per year”.

In addition, “most teens today regularly abuse drugs or alcohol to compensate for anxiety, depression, or a lack of positive skills. Vulnerability to addiction varies from person to person, the symptoms differ, but there are specific factors that may make one person more vulnerable to addiction” (Addiction Center, 2018). Irritability or aggression are common side effects after using illegal substance.There can also be a large change in personality, attitude, school performance, friend groups, family relationships, or delinquent behaviors exhibited by those using these substances.

Physical changes could include; “blackouts, withdrawal symptoms, red eyes, change in eating, sleeping habits, mood swings, irritability, and anger outburst. Physical addiction appears to occur when repeated use of a drug changes the way the brain feel pleasure”(Aacap). If the use of a drug goes to far the abuser could possibly face death. Every addict all have different symptoms, and they all have different reactions to the drug they are using

Furthermore, drug abuse tends to significantly alter a person’s behavior and daily habits. Relapses happen to about 40-60%, this rate is very similar to rates with other chronic diseases. (People Press, 2014). However, when the “high” wears off, that person becomes frustrated, angry, and possibly hungry for more of the drug in order to have that relaxing feeling again.

The user craves the drug, always chasing after that euphoric type of feeling. “Almost 80 percent of individuals suffering from a substance use disorder in 2014 struggled with an alcohol use disorder, NSDUH” (American Addiction Center,2014). Addiction causes the uncontrollable craving to continue the abuse, the desire to use grows more important than anything else, including family, friends, career, and even one’s health and happiness. Mixed factors can contribute to teen drug abuse, from insecurity to a desperation for social attention and acceptance.

Uniquely, there are thousands of drug abuse rehabilitation programs offer addicts a wide selection of treatment, ranging from traditional, evidenced based care to more experimental or universal services. As the American Addiction Center Resource has stated, ”As drugs have been abused for hundreds of years all over the world, their effects have been felt for just as long” (source 1). There are numerous types of treatment options, The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that there are over 14,500 specialized substance abuse treatment programs offering countless of care options. Therapeutic methods to pharmaceutical tools to complementary forms of medicine, about 10% of Americans claim to be in recovery from alcohol or drug issues.

Multiple doctors tell patients to have alone or family therapy sessions, learning new coping skills and knowing where to find help are essential. “The Proliferation of these substance birthed many agencies, all commissioned to counter the scourge of illegal drugs. These bureaucracies, in turn, needed statical information in order to effectively understand the scope of their task” (People Press, 2014). Levels of care and settings that change reckoning on your wants, such as outpatient, residential and patient programs. A focal point on understanding the nature of addiction, becoming drug free and preventing relapse.

To Conclude, the truth behind drug abuse is very devastating and destructive. In the past, drugs have been popularized by users and became a thing that people couldn’t live without. This has been passed down generation by generation. The consequences of the drug use is a thing that shocks the majority of society, but those symptoms vary from person to person and it depends on the drug they abuse. The treatment for this addiction is very hard to control because once they have that drug they are most likely not to go back to normal, and they could have many relapses, and it could take months or even years for the abuser to heal from the addiction.

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The Truth of Drug Addiction. (2021, Jul 19). Retrieved June 12, 2024 , from

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