Understanding addiction

It is difficult to understand the complexities that lead people to addiction to drugs and alcohol. Many people assume that individuals who are addicted lack moral principles or the intention to leave drugs.

Ideally, a person who is addicted has a complex disease and a lot of effort has to be made to change that person. Due to the fact that drugs make the brain adapt to it’s routinely use, it makes it difficult for the user to quit drugs. Despite the difficulty in leaving drugs, some scientific advances have been made to make it possible for drug users to quit drug abuse.

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Abuse of drugs and addiction pose as a big danger to the stability of individuals in the society. In fact, in the United States alone, the cumulative substance abuse and related damages to the economy is approximately six hundred billion yearly. As much as this statistics show the extend of the damages caused by drug addiction, they do not represent the actual damages caused to the family such as separation in the family, school dropping, family conflicts and child mistreatment.

Addiction is a persistent urge which makes a person’s brain to always want to use and look for specific compulsive drug without any consideration to the consequences to the individual or people around them. The first intention of using psychoactive drugs is voluntary and as time goes by, the brain gets used to it and an individual lacks self control and the will to resist its usage.

Modern scientific approaches have been made available to enable drugs users leave this trend. The proponents of this medication propose that routine medications that go along with behavior changes need to be administered to ensure successful recovery of the people affected. Just like other chronic diseases for example diabetes and asthma, addiction can be treated successfully.

Drugs have chemical components that disrupt the communication channels of the brain to an extent that it affects the way the brain processes and disseminates information. The chemicals present in the drugs disrupt the functioning of the brain in two ways mainly through imitating the natural functioning of the brain and overworking the circuit of the brain. Drugs like bhang and heroin have chemical components similar to those produced by the brain.

This resemblance enables the components of the drugs to deceive the receptors of the brain by sending wrong messages. Drugs like cocaine release these chemicals in large amounts disrupting the normal circulation of the brain chemicals needed for normal functioning. The effect of this on the system by the drugs is adaptations to the drugs which make people repeat the behaviors induced by the drugs. Prolonged use of the drugs cause harmful effects to other parts of the brain functioning.

Some people become addicted while others do not. The explanations given by researchers for this difference are varied. They argue that it depends on the individual’s biological functioning, environment they socialize in and the age of an individual. For instance, factors that determine the extent of addiction of an individual are greatly determined by the genes he or she was born with and environmental influences.

In addition, gender and ethnicity plays a critical role. Apart from biological influences, a person’s immediate environment and social economic status count towards the vulnerability of the individuals. Addiction to drugs can be prevented despite the difficulty that can be encountered. As long as the young people are adequately educated on the negative effects of the drugs, they can strive to leave the habit.


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