Drug addiction is an illness that affects the brain. It is diagnosed and finally confirmed by a drug test. It results from excessive drug use, impaired control over drug use, and continued use despite harmful consequences. The victims may well be struggling with this addiction every day. It is a debilitating condition characterized by relapsing while under withdrawal.
It’s worth noting that drug addiction impacts hundreds of thousands of Americans daily. The best way to combat addiction is to detect it early and treat its symptoms. By seeking out a drug addiction assessment, you can determine whether or not you are suffering from drug dependence and abuse. Read this article about grug addiction help learn more about how you can get help or assist those you love.
Signs And Symptoms Of Drug Addiction
NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse) states that addiction is a chronic, recurrent condition marked by:
- Compulsive seeking of drugs
- Continuing to abuse drugs and substances despite the adverse effects
- Brain changes that endure for a long time
Addiction, according to NIDA, can be both a psychological condition and a severe neurological disorder.
Behavioral Signs Of Addictions
Whenever your loved ones face addiction problems, the apparent indicators of their addiction are generally their outward actions. Most of their observable behaviors result from a lack of control;
- Despite efforts to regulate, there is excessive regularity in the use of drugs.
- Prolonged durations using or recuperating from the effects of drugs.
- Despite repeated issues, usage continues.
- Narrowing focus on incentives associated with addiction.
- Inability to accept actions or steps to mitigate the situation.
Lack Of Refrain
Drug addiction can start when someone tries out a new substance for the first time. Even before the first use, there are changes in the brain that signal a person’s risk for addiction to that drug. According to research, long-term drug use induces a chemical shift in the victim’s brain, affecting the brain’s reward system and encouraging obsessive drug use despite consequences and rewards.
How Addictions Start
With drug addiction, it is not just about a single factor. While it is true that drugs can cause an addictive reaction due to the type of chemicals that are in many of the drugs on the market, there is more to why people get addicted to drugs than experimentation and reliance on the drug when looking to achieve euphoria or numb dysphoria.
Genetics And Addiction
Not everyone who uses drugs becomes an addict, so why does one person become addicted and not another? Recent research has revealed some genetic factors that contribute to addiction. There is only a tiny percentage of people with addiction-prone genes, and most of the world’s population would never be able to develop a problem using drugs.
Even though many people who use drugs do not become addicts, it is still essential to understand how genetics affects the stages of drug addiction. According to scientists, addictions are heritable in about 40 to 60 percent of cases. At the same time, genetics is responsible for supplying pre-existing susceptibilities to addictions and enhancing vulnerabilities to environmental stressors.
Brain Changes And Drugs
Our brains are complex with an elemental composition. Understanding how these essential elements interact can be beneficial in understanding what happens when you take drugs. After a person becomes addicted to the effects of a drug, continued use of the drug rewires their brain’s reward system. The release of dopamine and opioids becomes crucial to their well-being. They become conditioned to rely on the substances to modulate their moods and relieve stress or anxiety.
Lower Lows And Lower Highs
Lower highs and lower lows—that’s what drug addicts go through during the cycle of addiction. For them, it’s not just about the highs they experience when taking the drugs, drinking, or engaging in addictive behavior; it’s also about the lows they sink into when their bodies have processed the substance, and they crave more. The addict becomes used to living in these alternating high/low cycles.
Addicts don’t usually develop a tolerance for their substance. Instead, they develop a tolerance to the highs and lows of substance abuse. Withdrawal means physical discomfort, but it also adds to the emotional turmoil a person experiences.
No Longer A Function Of Choice
Compulsivity is a state of being in which the addict finds it hard or impossible to say no. When an addict progresses this far into addiction, their lives have taken a surreal turn, whether they are still using drugs. No one chooses to live under such a circumstance, and the addict feels progressively trapped by both their role and the increasing number of lies they tell to maintain that role.
Chronic Illnesses Or Relapses
Addicts can’t just stop their addiction. They can go through detox, enter rehab, and then get sober. But those things don’t cure them of the underlying disease of addiction. Like many chronic diseases, including diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure, and more, addiction is a lifelong condition that requires treatment for a person to remain in remission.