It is everybody’s problem. An addict might say:
“I’m not hurting anybody. I’m only hurting myself.”
However, we can quickly see that the statement is false, because there is no such thing as an addict who is only hurting him/herself. The problem is found everywhere, from the rich and privileged, to the lost members of society.
What are the major alcoholism and addiction effects?
For over 30 years the United States government has had its “War on drugs and alcohol,” but in that time frame we have seen in increase in crime, increase in health care costs and an alarming increase in the use of dangerous drugs and alcohol such as cocaine, heroin, crack and methamphetamine.
The “War on drugs and alcohol” has also brought on new research, a greater number of treatment facilities, new and sometimes controversial theories on treatment, advances in drug addiction and alcoholism medications, but are we winning?
The effects of drug addiction and alcoholism are far reaching and can be seen in the home, on the job, in churches and in schools.
This section contains some topic areas.
What are the Effects of alcoholism and addiction on health?
If left unchecked, the drug is going to win. Drug abuse and alcoholism is a disease of the brain, and the drugs and alcohol change brain chemistry, which results in a change in behavior. Aside from the obvious behavioral consequences of addiction and alcoholism, the negative effects on a person’s health are potentially devastating.
While Addict/alcoholics use drugs and alcohol to “feel better,” the unintended consequences include but are not limited to overdose, HIV/AIDS, stroke, cardiovascular disease and a host of related maladies.
To understand this better you may want to read "Get Sick to Feel Better" a story of the negative Effects of alcoholism and addiction...
What are the Effects of alcoholism and addiction on the family?
One of the saddest aspects of the insidious nature of drug addiction and alcoholism is that by the time an addict realizes he/she has a problem, that problem has already taken a heavy toll on the family.
Parents in treatment centers tell counselors and therapists that they want to “get their kids back,” as drug addiction and alcoholism has taken over to the point where the courts have been forced to remove the children from the home.
Husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, and sadly children are all impacted. Families can be sources of strength and support, or they can passively enable the addiction and alcoholism to advance.
Families can share in the victory over drug addiction and alcoholism, or they can become the victims.
What are the Effects of alcoholism and addiction on our society?
The National Library of Medicine estimates that some 20% of all people in the United States have used prescription medication for non-medical purposes. We’re not talking about cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine use, but doctor-prescribed medication. You can easily see that if you group the two together, illegal drug use and prescription drug misuse, we have a huge problem.
What are the Effects of alcoholism and addiction on the Law?
The news media reports daily struggles with theft, drive-by shootings, drug busts, illegal trafficking and manufacturing of drugs and alcohol, and arrests for crimes ranging from child neglect to murder. Look closer and chances are great that you will uncover a drug addiction and alcoholism component to any of these stories.
What are the Effects of alcoholism and addiction on the economy?
Beyond the personal health issues, beyond the devastating effect on families, beyond community crime statistics, drug addiction and alcoholism has a major impact on the American economy. The National Institute on Drug abuse and alcoholism reported that some $67 billion per year is the impact that drug addiction and alcoholism has on this country.
This total includes the cost of law enforcement, incarceration, treatments, traffic injuries, lost time in the workplace, etc. Drug addiction and alcoholism causes impaired reasoning, and therefore the crime rate is dramatically impacted by drug and alcohol use. Addict/alcoholics have a much higher likelihood of committing crimes than others.
Put some of the factors together--
the alcohol-related deaths on our streets and highways, the abuse of the healthcare system by Addict/alcoholics showing up at Emergency Rooms looking for drugs and alcohol, the absenteeism on the job and the serious risk of HIV infection for those using needles,
and you quickly realize this problem is enormous.