Addiction is extremely prevalent in our society today and unfortunately it doesn't matter how old you are. No matter what your addicted to there are negative consequences that take place when a person becomes dependent. Depending on what form of addiction a person is going through an individual can experience mental, emotional, physical and spiritual affects due to their dependency.
Through research we have learned that drug addiction is a disease that alters or changes the way the brain works when it comes to substance abuse. Research also shows that there isn't any one specific thing that determines whether or not a person could or will become addicted to drugs or other substances. Even though an individual makes a choice to use and misuse drugs, when addiction takes place, the user becomes compelled and obsessed to use again in-spite of the negative health and social consequences.
We know that there are a wide range of negative effects when it comes to substance abuse and we also know that HIV is one of the most serious effects from intravenous drug use. Through research we know that addiction usually starts during adolescents and the early years of adulthood. That's why most prevention programs are aimed at young people in the hopes of preventing drug use from ever starting in the first place.
There are various forms of addiction; today many people are addicted to illegal street drugs, prescription drugs and over the counter medications, alcohol, tobacco, food, gambling, shopping, the internet, online gaming, video games, and online adult porn sites. The mental and physical effects of addiction depend on what the addiction is to, substance abuse, alcoholism, tobacco and food addiction are extremely serious and can lead to major health problems and death.
Addiction affects people throughout the world and the psychological, physical and social effects of this disease is crippling. All drugs are different when it comes to the physical and mental consequences of addiction but they can all destroy a person's life in one way or another.
It doesn't matter how old a person is when they become addicted to substances like alcohol, painkillers, heroin, cocaine, meth, club drugs, or marijuana the effects associated with addiction have a major impact on a person's life. The consequences associated with some of these drugs are not only serious but they can be deadly.
What We Do Know About Drugs That are Abused and Misused Today
Prescription Drugs are being abused or misused more today than ever before and the effects are extremely serious and dangerous. Many teens and young adults are using prescription drugs to get high because they think they're safer than illegal street drugs. I wish this were only true. Prescription drugs when taken in high doses, mixed with other drugs, or combined with alcohol are just as dangerous as street drugs. Painkillers, antidepressants, sleep medications and stimulants for ADHD are commonly used today and not just by young people, to get high. There are serious consequences when abusing these drugs and some are addictive. The abuse or misuse of prescription drugs has led to overdose and death for many people especially when combining drugs or drinking alcohol to intensify a high. Alcohol is a depressant that's consumed orally and the effects include addiction which is alcoholism, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, hangovers, incoherent speech, sleep problems, motor skills are impaired, violent behavior, fetal alcohol syndrome, respiratory problems and in high doses, death.
Amphetamines are stimulants and they are used orally, snorted, smoked or injected. Chronic use of amphetamines can lead to psychosis with symptoms that are similar to schizophrenia. Benzedrine and Dexedrine are trademark names for some amphetamines. The effects of amphetamines include addiction, irritability, anxiousness, restlessness, high blood pressure, paranoia, psychosis, depression, hostility, convulsions, dilated pupils, faintness, problems sleeping, decreased appetite, malnutrition and when injected possibly HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases.
Methamphetamines are stimulants and some people that use these drugs don't sleep and are awake for anywhere from 3 to 15 days. Methamphetamines are smoked, snorted, injected, or taken orally. The effects of methamphetamine abuse include addiction, irritability, hostility, hypothermia, strokes, paranoia, psychosis, seizures, heart and blood vessel toxicity, hallucinations, arrhythmia, and formication which is sensations or feelings associated with bugs crawling under the skin.
Ecstasy which is also referred to as MDMA is a very common designer drug that many young people use to get high especially during raves and parties. The effects of ecstasy include panic, nervousness, depression, paranoia, tense muscles, nausea, vision problems, perspiring, increased heart rate, tremors, hallucinations, fainting, chills, sleep problems and decreased appetite.
Ritalin is a stimulant that's used to manage the symptoms of ADHD. Sometimes children either buy or steal these drugs from kids at school. It's very common for a drug user to crush Ritalin into a powder and the individual either snorts the drug or combines it with liquid and injects it to get high. The effects of Ritalin include decreased appetite, fever, convulsions, severe headaches, paranoia, hallucinations, tremors, twitching muscles, repetitive movements, pointless tasks, and if injected the user risks HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious disease.
Designer Drugs are stimulants that are developed in illegal labs. These drugs are created by changing the properties of other drugs that come from plants like marijuana or morphine. Examples of designer man-made drugs are LSD, K2, bath salts and ecstasy. People snort, smoke or inject these drugs to get high. The effects of designer drugs can include instant respiratory paralysis, overdose and similar effects that heroin users experience. Because designer drugs are all different and man-made there is no way to give specific effects because you're never completely sure what's in them. What makes matters worse is that users often combine designer drugs with other substances to intensify their high which makes the consequences even more risky and dangerous.
Cocaine and Crack Cocaine are stimulants and extremely addictive. Cocaine is either snorted or injected after dissolving in water and crack cocaine is smoked. The effects of cocaine abuse can cause addiction, dilated pupils, high blood pressure, elevated heart rate, seizures, heart attacks, insomnia, anxiousness, irritability, and death due to overdose. Heavy and frequent use of both forms of cocaine can cause paranoia, hallucinations, aggressive behavior, sleeplessness, and depression.
Heroin is an opiate drug and with frequent use causes tolerance very easily. Heroin users snort, smoke or inject this man-made drug when wanting to get high. The effects of heroin abuse include addiction, speech problems, and vision problems at night, respiratory problems, itching and dryness of the skin, and skin infections. HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases are a risk when heroin is injected.
Inhalants are used by many people today and users either sniff or huff the vapors to get high. Unfortunately inhalants are legal, toxic, and can be found in any home. The effects from using inhalants include headaches, weakened muscles, stomach pain, severe mood swings, aggressive behavior, nausea, nose bleeds, and serious damage to the liver, lungs, and kidneys. The user's heart and respiratory system rate can decrease, coordination can become off-balanced, the user's appetite can decrease and fatigue can also be experienced.
Marijuana is a popular drug used by people of all ages and is either smoked or ingested. The effects of marijuana includes bloodshot eyes, dry mouth, reduced comprehension, reduced concentration, reduced coordination, paranoia, and intense anxiety attacks. Marijuana can also cause impaired learning, memory, judgment and perception. Frequent and heavy use of marijuana can also cause addiction.
Tobacco use is extremely wide spread throughout the United States and other parts of the world. Unfortunately people of all ages use tobacco which includes some children. Tobacco use causes addiction, heart disease, a variety of cancers, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), low birth weight, and spontaneous abortion.
Other forms of addiction like gambling, online gaming, video game playing, shopping, porn and obsessions to computer adult sites come with negative consequences also. These forms of addiction effect a person financially, can destroy relationships, can affect self-esteem, and sometimes affect a person's job or grades and attendance in school. When an individual is stressed due to these forms of addiction it can also take a toll on a person's health. Counseling, behavioral therapy and 12 step programs are beneficial for individuals in need of help.
Treatment for Addiction
It depends on the type of addiction when it comes to treatment and some people are able to change their compulsive behaviors on their own, but most people need outside help. Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, and 12 Step programs are all excellent forms of help for addiction. Substance abuse treatment for frequent or chronic users generally requires a more intense form of treatment to prevent relapse and maintain sobriety. More intense forms of treatment are done on a residential, inpatient, or outpatient basis depending on what a person's addiction treatment needs are.
No matter what a person is addicted to, addiction can be treated and managed so a person can go on with their lives and be happy but it takes commitment. When a person has the desire to stop even if it's the slightest desire, treatment will work if you give it a chance and stick with it.