Issues with anxiety have caused drug addiction

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Issues with anxiety have caused drug addiction

by Ryan Rivera

More and more people are falling prey to the use of illicit drugs. They find it the easiest way to cope with unpleasant feelings and events. They think that taking amphetamines, ecstasy, cocaine, PCP or cannabis is the only way to escape life’s difficulties.

There may be feel-good moments during use, but the serious adverse effects of long-term use should not be ignored or taken lightly. One effect of substance abuse is the very serious condition known as anxiety.

If you know someone, a friend or a family member, who may be using drugs to solve a problem or fill a void in his or her life, know that your help can be a huge force in the recovery process. Educating yourself about anxiety and drug abuse as well as knowing possible management options can help you understand how to go about offering your assistance.

1. Understand Stress and Drug Use

Pressure from work, school and home can lead people to use drugs. People who are battling with deadlines and quotas may take a few sniffs to charge them up so that they will perform well at work.

In school, peer pressure can push kids to try these illicit drugs. They do this to avoid bullying or to be in with the cool crowd. At home, financial and marital problems can make people want to forget their troubles even for a little while.

The use of these drugs does not automatically classify a person as a drug addict. It all depends upon the consequences of the drug use to the individual. When one flunks classes, skips work or neglects parental duties and responsibilities, then you can say that the person has become addicted or dependent.

Some of the most common warning signs of drug abuse include bloodshot eyes, sudden weigh loss or weight gain, poor personal hygiene and grooming habits, and anxiety symptoms such as tremors, unexplained change in attitude or personality, irritability, angry outbursts, hyperactivity, paranoia or lack of motivation and drive.

2. Talk to Them

If you suspect your friend or your family member to be on drugs, it is especially imperative that you talk to them. Ask them to sit down with you and attempt to know what their problems are. If a friend is stressed at work, plan a weekly or monthly get-together or offer to be a gym or workout buddy. If your kid is being bullied in school, take the necessary actions to ascertain his or her safety. Know who these bullies are and talk to their parents in the presence of the teacher and/or school principal.

Communication is essential. Talk to them without judgment. Offer your support with pure sincerity. Let them know that you are there for them whenever and wherever they may need you. Do not wait for the moment when your loved one has hit rock bottom.

3. Suggest Stress-Relieving Strategies

Anxiety is often the reason why people turn to drugs. These drugs help them to unwind and loosen up after a stressful day. But after the effects of drugs are washed away, the anxiety they first felt is doubled or tripled with recurrent drug use. As a concerned friend, tell them that there are healthier methods in de-stressing. These include exercising, doing yoga, listening to music, sipping tea or lighting a scented candle. All these strategies help to disperse troubling emotions without the need to turn to drugs.

4. Seek Professional Help

Long-term abuse of illegal drugs can take an alarming toll on the central nervous system causing prominent anxiety and panic attacks or possible obsession and compulsion behavior. Withdrawal from drugs at this point can be extremely dangerous without proper supervision and medical support.

Through your help, try to persuade them to seek professional support. Take them to a hospital or rehabilitation center so that counselors, facilitators and doctors can closely observe their detoxification process. With proper medical and professional supervision, they can safely withdraw from these substances.

Severely anxious and depressed people can turn to drugs in their misguided attempt to manage their problems. These substances dampen their negative emotions and feelings and release them from their pain. As a concerned friend or loved one, it is crucial that you help them see that these drugs are not the answer to their difficulties. With your non-judgmental attitude, understanding and sincere help, you will be able to help them conquer their addiction.

Ryan Rivera battled with anxiety for 7 long years. He defeated it through the help and support of friends and families as well as anxiety-relieving strategies. To know more on how to manage anxiety, depression and stress, visit

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– Matthew 7:7-8

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