Mental health issues and drug use disorders can sometimes coexist. The reasons are as follows:
In those habitual to illegal narcotics, symptoms of mental health conditions could get triggered.
Mental illness can lead to the misuse of alcohol or sedatives. This is because some people with mental
illnesses might use them for self-medication.
There are some common underlying causes of mental health disorders and substance abuse. These include
changes in brain composition, genetic vulnerabilities, and early exposure to stress or trauma.
The two significant factors that can make you predisposed to this condition are environmental
and genetic. Some environmental factors include a home environment where trauma, abuse, or
compelling behaviors occur. Some friends, family members, or individuals who are abusing could
be a bad influence. Genetic variables include a family history of mental illness or addiction.
When narcotics enter your system, they cause an excess of dopamine. Because these are causing an
overabundance, your brain will compensate and produce less dopamine. When the effects wear off,
your brain produces less dopamine, resulting in a physical and emotional breakdown. It might
urge you to use them again, and after prolonged use, you start taking them to feel normal and
When you develop this condition, it disrupts regular communication between chemical messengers
and neurotransmitters in the brain. For instance, some substances immediately flood the brain
with dopamine, creating feelings of euphoria. The brain then attempts to balance the situation
by lowering dopamine production. Long-term use of some of these can cause a dopamine deficiency.
This can lead to compulsive behaviors and long-term mood and mental health changes.
Not only does it impact your mental and physical health, but it negatively affects your social
health as well. It can hamper your ability to create new relationships and maintain healthy
connections. Your connection with people may suffer when you are focused on obtaining and
This condition certainly impacts you and your loved ones. But it can also impact the schools,
companies, and communities with which you are involved. It may have many social consequences,
including unsafe workplaces, disease spread, and crime. For example, it can lead to decreased
productivity in the workplace. In school, students who use substances are more likely than their
peers to fail academically. It can also lead you to commit crimes.
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Addiction is the long-term malfunction of the brain system. It is about how your body needs a habit,
particularly if it leads to a compulsive or obsessive pursuit of something that seems rewarding to you.
Those addicted might be unable to stay away from the substance and exhibit a lack of self-control. They may
also have a stronger desire for the narcotic and ignore the possibility that their actions are causing
problems. They may also lack an emotional response.
It is a complex disease that can have many consequences in a person's life. A comprehensive nationwide
government survey conducted in 2019 revealed that approximately crores of people required a cure for
alcoholism, lakhs for cannabis usage, and lakhs for other sedatives. This points toward the alarming rate of
the increased dependency of Indians on narcotics and alcohol. It also warns against its easy availability.
Rehabilitation requires individualized therapy. It should address the disease's symptoms, underlying causes,
and its effects on various aspects of your life. Trusted psychologists can assist you with both crisis and
long-term management. It can range from immediate medical support to long-term help in managing their
Major Causes and Risk Factors
Anyone can develop this illness regardless of upbringing, social rank, or beliefs. It's tough to comprehend
why some people are more vulnerable to it than others. Regardless of your moral code or upbringing, several
elements can raise your chance of becoming an alcoholic or using sedatives frequently. Your risk for misuse
can increase because of some circumstances. These are called risk factors. The more risk factors you are
exposed to, the more likely you will abuse these and become habitual with them. These include:
Early Use: Age is a significant cause and risk factor which leads to developing this disorder. A
survey shows young people aged 18 to 24 are more likely to have these disorders. If you start using
drugs or alcohol when you're young, it might affect your brain development. This could make you more
vulnerable to mental health problems later in life.
Pre-existing Mental Health Condition: Underlying mental health concerns can worsen the risk
factors. Similarly, getting habitual can intensify pre-existing mental health issues. This can produce a
vicious cycle in which this condition progresses and has severe consequences. For a short time, using
narcotics or alcohol may seem to reduce symptoms, but this might only make things worse in the long run.
Genetics: Genetics is one of the most significant risk factors. According to research, genetics
may account for up to half of a person's chance of dependence on alcohol, stimulants, or nicotine. As a
result, it is common for persons with family members who have struggled with this condition to become
frequent users. Furthermore, those with such personalities may be vulnerable to various addictions.
Environmental Factors: Children and teenagers with uninvolved parents are more likely to take
risks and experiment with drugs and alcohol. A young kid who has experienced parental neglect or
mistreatment may turn to them to cope with their emotions. Peer pressure is also a risk factor,
particularly among young individuals. If these substances are readily available in one's social circle,
it might also raise one's chance of experiencing this condition.
How to Recognize Signs of Drug Addiction
Understanding the signs and symptoms can be critical in getting people help. It is also crucial to
determine the treatment they require before the consequences turn disastrous. A few recognizable markers
Behavioral changes: Behavioral patterns come under this category. It may include changes like:
Missing work, school, or other vital activities or engagements
Social disengagement, isolation, or secrecy about whereabouts and activities
Changes in sleeping patterns
Emotional changes: Heightened emotions and mood changes fall under this category. It may include
Irritability and a tendency to argue
Exhibiting inappropriate, unpleasant, and childish behavior
Being easily confused
Making strange excuses, justifications, and rationalizations for their actions in confrontations.
Shifting blame and diverting attention
Physical changes: These are tangible changes that are highly concerning. It may include changes like:
Bloodshot eyes and bloody noses
Shakes, tremors, or slurred speech
Fluctuating energy levels
Changes in appetite and significant weight loss
Types of Substance Abuse
The two main types include alcohol use disorder and drug use disorder. Some people abuse both, while others
are hooked to one.
Alcohol use disorder: Sometimes known as alcoholism, obsessive drinking and the loss of control
over the amount of alcohol consumed characterize this condition. Binge drinking (taking a large amount
of alcohol in one sitting) and heavy drinking (consuming large amounts of alcohol multiple times each
month) are two types of drinking problems that can lead to alcoholism.
Drug use disorder: Illegal narcotics, prescription medications, or a combination can cause
this. Cocaine, heroin, methamphetamines, benzodiazepines, steroids, and inhalants are all highly
Sedatives and stimulants affect how the brain is wired and interfere with its natural reward system.
However, people with this disorder might continue to use despite the harm they cause to their
health, relationships, and employment.
Should I Stage an Intervention?
It's challenging to support a loved one who is battling an addiction of any kind. When it comes to this
condition, the individual suffering from it may sometimes find it difficult to see and acknowledge the
problem. Often, a more targeted strategy is required. You may need to come together with others and conduct
a formal intervention.
Interventions can effectively alert a loved one suffering from this disorder that something is wrong. It can
make them aware that their actions are not just impacting them but also those around them. However,
effective intervention can assist loved ones in constructively expressing their emotions. The ultimate goal
is to assist the person battling this to seek treatment and enter rehabilitation. Thus, an intervention can
provide adequate help.
Find Help From a Licensed Therapist Who's Right For You
Your struggles may often be dismissed by society. More often than not, suffering from this condition can
also lead to a lot of judgment. Opening up and sharing your issues with someone can be difficult for you.
However, the right therapist will not judge you and will be compassionate.
Therefore, getting therapy is vital. Since it is a chronic illness, the chances of relapse are also
relatively higher. So, you must choose a trained and licensed therapist with relevant experience.
Schedule a Virtual Appointment With a Counsellor Today
As the remedial approach for this illness is quite specific, you must seek counseling from a trusted
professional. For a condition as sensitive as this, it is critical to ensure that you select your healthcare
providers wisely. Else, the cure won't be as effective.
From our comprehensive list of therapists, you can now obtain a treatment that will suit your needs. Reach
out to us at DocVita to cope with your condition and manage your symptoms effectively. Hop on to our page
and schedule your first virtual session today!