Causes of Drug Addiction
Causes of Drug Addiction are many including:
– Major sickness/illness
– Death of a loved one
What are the underlying causes of drug addiction?
When we take drugs, either for medical purposes or recreation, there is a benefit or reward that we are trying to achieve.
For example pain medication is intended to bring relief to an injured or stressed area of our body. The beginning stages of addiction us to crave more and to use more. The unintended consequences of that is our need to take more and more of the drug to get the same result.
Causes of Drug Addiction: In addition the pathways inside the brain to be altered, physical changes in the nerve cells are brought on by the drug. These neurons communicate with each other releasing neurotransmitters into the gaps or synapses between the nerve cells. This makes some drugs much more addictive than others.
There are several other factors that contribute to drug addiction. We’ll go into greater detail on another page, but for now the major factors are one’s genetic makeup, personality and peer pressure. Again we’ll explain these as we go along.
What Are The Factors?
We are all a product of our parents. If your parents have addiction struggles, chances are you are more susceptible to addiction. That’s why drug addiction is more common in some families than in others. If your parents smoke, chances are good you will smoke. If your parents used alcohol, you’ll probably follow and use that drug in much the same way. If your father was an alcoholic, you have a predisposition to addiction that drug.
Causes of Drug Addiction one generation passes it on to the next.
Certain Personality Types
Aside from the inherited factors, some people have a personality that is more likely to become drug dependent.
– People are curious, so that alone can lead a person to try a drug. We experiment and see what happens.
– We are looking to relax and have pleasure.
– We all want to feel good, and we’re by nature impatient. Drugs give us an instant gratification that other things do not, so for that moment or hour of for whatever time frame, we feel good.
– We want what we want.
– Someone diagnosed with depression, attention deficit disorder, or hyperactivity.
– Maybe there has been some stress, or anxiety in their life. Whatever the case, these are contributing factors.
Even some common personality characteristics, such as aggression, may be a factor. Children who do not have confidence, healthy self-esteem may be prone to turning to drugs to fill the void.
Causes of Drug Addiction: Addiction does cause negative changes in personality that can lead to an even more destructive behavior.
Social Pressure/Peer Pressure
We’re all wired to have relationships, and sometimes those relationships cause us to give in to something we otherwise would avoid in order to maintain the relationship. Social/Peer pressure is huge and nowhere is this greater than during our teenage years. Kids want to be cool. It begins as a social action, to take the drugs to be a part of the group, to be accepted. It’s not just teenagers, as peer pressure takes so many different forms. There is social etiquette, for example, to take a drink during a party. “I’m only a social drinker.” How many times have you heard that? Some people actually believe that Addiction will help you to be accepted and part of the ‘popular’ group.
If you want to get drugs, you won’t have to look far because they are everywhere. High school students can tell you this. Causes of Drug Addiction: sadly, people to sell drugs to the most vulnerable population, children. It’s not just the stereotypical poor sections of the inner city that serve as the hotbed for drugs. Drugs are found in shopping malls, rural schools, private school, on the job in factories, offices and remote job sites.
Race and/or Ethnicity
We include this heading because we want to stress that there is no data to support any claim that one race of people or any particular cultural group is more prone to drug addiction than another. Drug addiction is a human problem and crosses all boundaries. Causes of Drug Addiction do not include race.
We want to feel good physically and emotionally. Sometimes drugs are the substitution for a healthy life experience. The person in pain and they want to numb the pain. The drug numbs the pain and for a moment they don’t feel as poorly. The person needs to escape the pain of the life experience, and for a short while, the drug takes them away and they feel “better.”
Sometimes people need some help coping with life. Everyday life becomes a struggle and simple things become too much to handle. Drugs are used to deal with it. In the case of addiction, we are not talking about the use of medication, under the care and observation of a doctor. People who have been clinically diagnosed with anxiety can lead a very good life. We’re talking here about people who just need to escape. Their drug of choice facilitates that escape.
Causes of My Prescription Addiction.
After completing 4 years at the University of Northern Colorado
for my Bachelor of Science in 2001, 1 year at Johns Hopkins University
for my Masters in Health Science in 2003, and 2 ½ years into my Ph.D. in
respiratory medicine at the Medical College of Virginia/Virginia
Commonwealth University in 2002-2004, I thought I had complete control of
Specifically, my career in aerosol respiratory
medicine. I had published my first paper in a respectable peer reviewed
medical journal (Chest) when I was 27. Several months after that, I
presented the paper at a medical conference in Garmisch-Partenkirchen,
Germany. It was one of 9 trips I would take to Germany to consult with a
medical company established in Starnberg, Germany.
By the time
I was in my second year of my Ph.D. I had published/presented 54
medical papers, published 6 peer reviewed medical papers, was
contributing author on one book, owned and operated my own consulting
company in respiratory medicine, developed a patent for respiratory
devices, and was progressing successfully in my Ph.D.
I was 31
years old and I was proud of my accomplishments and my continuing
success in respiratory medicine. But, that was all about to change.
Addiction would enter my life and take away from me my possessions, my
profession, my loved ones, and my sanity.
My pathway to
addiction started when I made an appointment to see a doctor, for
migraine headaches. I put great trust in him due to the fact that he
was the medical schools doctor and was responsible for taking care of
the students enrolled in the medical school programs. In a time frame
of 7.9 months I was prescribed 6,647 controlled substance pills.
had pills to help me stay awake and study, pills for helping me sleep,
pills for anxiety, and pills for pain. I knew about addiction but I
thought I was too intelligent to become addicted.
pills were provided to me by the schools doctor who said he had taken
pills when he was in medical school to help him succeed. My ignorance
would cause me to lose almost a decade of my life and would bring me
close to death many times as a result of my severe drug addiction.
the doctor lost his medical license for over prescribing controlled
substances and not monitoring that prescribing, it was too late for me.
I had to drop out of my Ph.D. program due to my addiction. He lost his
license 3 months after I dropped out of the program.
point in my life, I had to confront and accept some very disturbing
facts: I no longer was pursuing the goal I had been following for the
past 15 years, I was severely addicted to prescription drugs, the doctor
who had been prescribing me the drugs had his medical license revoked,
and the main focus of my life was to obtain drugs. I was, in essence,
trapped in the severity of my addiction. For the first time I had lost
complete control over my life.
first of numerous addiction related detrimental events came when I was
presenting a medical paper at a conference in Atlanta, Georgia. Before
my lecture I forged a prescription on my computer and proceeded to the
pharmacy to have it filled.
Since the prescription was for
Demerol, the pharmacy called the doctor and verified the prescription
was forged. The police were waiting for me (at the conference lecture
hall) to finish my lecture and when I did they handcuffed and arrested
I was taken out in front of all my colleagues and
conference members and taken to jail. Needless to say I was immediately
fired from my job as a senior aerosol scientist for a prominent German
company established in the United States.
For many years I was
doctor shopping. I would acquire my drugs in many ways: the internet,
hospital emergency rooms, forged prescriptions, clinics, private
doctors, and in other countries. I would stay employed by various
companies because of my experience in respiratory medicine. But, I
would ultimately get fired when my drug addiction interfered with the
quality of my work.
Eventually, word of my addiction became
known to my colleagues and the respiratory medicine industry. From that
point on, I was not called upon to lecture, to consult, or in any way
work in the respiratory medicine industry. I was, for all intents and
purposes, “blackballed” from my profession. It has taken great effort
to restore my reputation and I still encounter numerous ‘roadblocks’ to
this very day.
My future is still somewhat unknown. I do know
that I am very thrilled and inspired living life as a sober individual.
And, for the first the first time in 9 years I have a sense of
self-confidence and respect for myself.
This confidence reminds
me that I can do anything I put my mind to. For this reason I have
enrolled and been accepted to complete my doctorate in public health.
My dissertation concentrates on prescription addiction in today’s
It has been a long, arduous, and self-revealing
journey through my 9 years of addiction to recovery. Unfortunately
along the way I became deceitful, dishonest, unreliable, and
untrustworthy. On the other hand I can proclaim that through my
adversity came great prosperity. My experiences will allow me to
empathize and help countless others starting down or already on their
own pathway from addiction to recovery.
A New Life
by: Ned Wicker
You have been on a long and difficult road, but you are
overcoming. I am proud of you for having the courage to face yourself
and the conviction to see it through. Reading your story, I kept
thinking of high level professional people that I know, people just like
you, who are living two lives.
On the one hand, they are
respected professionals, but on the other hand, their lives have been
torn apart by one thing or another. While your professional
circumstances are changed, you are living one life now and can look
forward to new challenges and opportunities.
Your education and
personal experiences all count to make you an effective change agent
for others who are suffering. You are a survivor.