When we say ‘Drug Abuse’ the only names that come to mind are Heroin, Cocaine, Marijuana, etc. These are only the illegal drugs that cause addiction. The other substances you can get addicted to are alcohol, nicotine, sleep, anti-anxiety medicines, pain killers, and so on.
Addiction is a disease that affects our brains and behavior. When one is addicted to drugs, one cannot resist their usage. They might be aware of the harm the drug is causing them but they cannot overcome the urge for it. The sooner one takes treatment to stop the drug addiction, the sooner one can control its dire consequences.
Difference between Addiction and Abuse
Drug Abuse is when one uses legal or illegal drugs in ways that they should not be using it. Taking more than the prescribed dosage or using someone else’s prescription to buy drugs is drug abuse.
One may abuse drugs to feel good, relax stress, etc. However, drug abusers are able to change their unhealthy habits and leave the drug at any point of time in their life.
Addiction is when one cannot give up the usage of the drug. Even though their life might be in danger.
Addiction leads to causing financial stress, unhappiness to family and friends. One may want to quit the usage of the drug but is unable to overcome the urge.
Functioning of Drugs
Drugs cause the release of a chemical called Dopamine into our brains. Dopamine triggers a feeling of intense pleasure. The brain is wired in a way to repeat the actions that make you feel good. Hence arises the addiction. All other pleasures seem meager in front of the pleasure derived from the usage of the drug.
Long-time use of the drug alters one’s judgment, decision-making, memory, and ability to learn.
Who Gets Addicted?
Anyone can get addicted to drugs. However, a few things that can escalate your chances are:
- Family History
- Early drug use
- Mental Disorders
- Troubled Relationships
Warning Signs of Addiction
- Urge to use the drug daily.
- Always having the drug with you.
- Taking the drug more than you need it.
- Taking the drug even if it is hampering your work and relationships.
- Spending time alone.
- Not maintaining personal hygiene.
- Fighting, stealing, lying to procure the drug.
- Feeling sick when the drug is not available.
- Spending most of the time trying to procure the drug, and using it.
A Word From H2FCare
If you come across someone who is addicted or is abusing drugs, take them to a rehabilitation center. Do not hate them. They are ill and need treatment. Medication, counseling, friendship, and love from the family can help them cure their illness.