Drug Addiction: Relationships

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Drug Addiction
Zaid Tabaza 8’5

Figure 1: Drug Addiction

Key Concept: Relationships
Related Concept: Consequences, Environment Balance.
Global Context: Identities and Relationships

Addiction is the state of overdependence on a certain substance. Drug addiction, caused by social, environmental, and genetic factors, has become a global problem with serious implications on those affected, their societies, and the economy. Main causes of addiction shown in Figure 1 include the overuse of cigarettes, alcohol or drugs.

Table 1 shows that deaths because of drug overdoses in the US during 2010 exceeded 38,000 people. According to Mothers Against Drug Driving (MADD), 22% of drivers involved in accidents have tested positive to illegal,
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Graph 1: 12th Graders Drug Use by Type in the Past Year in the US

Drug addiction can be a result of genetics, mental illness, social, environmental, and stress factors. The “National Institute on Drug Abuse” has shown that individuals with a familial history of drug addiction are four times more likely to become addicted, and that 60% of addicts have a family history of addiction. Studies have indicated that people suffering from stress, anxiety or depression are more likely to use drugs and become addicted. Living with other addicts increases the odds of addition, and 45% of addicts think that their environment has influenced them to start using drugs.

Addiction manifests in physical (ongoing craving) and psychological (emotional reliance) dependence on drugs.

Addiction can result in a variety of physical, behavioral, and psychological signs and symptoms. Physical symptoms include changes in appetite or sudden weight loss. Meanwhile, behavioral symptoms include sudden change in tastes, or drop in attendance at Work or School. Finally, psychological symptoms include periods of hyperactivity or the lack of motivation for no reasonable
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Counseling is the personal aid in solving problems. It is an effective technique for stopping dependence by referring to advice from an expert about ways to stop and avoid drug use. It helps relieve stress, identify goals and find techniques to achieve goals. However, therapy can be considered emotionally harmful as addicts may not prefer to discuss personal problems or may be misjudged resulting in harm and intensifying the addiction problem.

Pharmacological treatment involves medications such as Marinol, a synthetic version of THC, and Sativex, a pharmaceutical cannabis extract. These medications oppose the effect of drugs on the brain and prevent withdrawal symptoms. Side effects include mood changes, dizziness, diarrhea and stomach pain. Furthermore, they don’t stop the issue of psychological dependence, which requires counseling or rehabilitation in order to be

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