Understanding Contributing Factors and Causes of Drug Addiction

Drugs are basic elements of modern medicine. It’s difficult to imagine how infections can be treated, pain relieved, and depression alleviated without drugs. Each day, many lives are saved because of drugs. Even the seemingly insignificant problem of not being able to sleep can be solved with the use of drugs.

Indeed, drugs are life savers if used properly. But when abused or used illicitly, they can be “life takers.” The effects of drug addiction bring havoc to the user himself, to his family, and to society in general. While it’s true that the drugs which are subject to abuse keep getting stronger, even the prescription medications are not spared by illicit drug users.

Drug addiction causes severe harm to the body. This is an oft-repeated statement and no one disagrees with it. But what exactly are the causes of drug addiction?

In many respects, the answers to this question – which are supposed to shed light on the nature of the problem – are rather complicated. It is known that repeated use of certain substances can result to the user becoming dependent on them. This is most certain in the case of illicit drugs.

There are basically two kinds of dependence associated with drug addiction; physical dependence and psychological dependence. In physical dependence, the drug user has developed tolerance to the drug. This means that the doses the user takes become larger and larger, so that the level of “high” he experiences remains the same. The opiates (morphine and heroin) are perfect examples in this case.

Psychological dependence on a drug, on the other hand, is characterized by a compulsive emotional need for the drug. The cannabis (marijuana and hashish) may be used as examples in this instance.

Medical and scientific researches have come to the conclusion that drug addiction is both physical and psychological dependence; both have a biochemical basis on the brain, although the distinction between them is not very clear. This, perhaps, is the reason why today’s interpretation of the term “drug addiction” has been made rather easy to understand: It relates to a behavioral pattern that is characterized by compulsive use of a drug and an extreme concern with obtaining it.

There are also suggestions that having an “addictive personality” may contribute to a person becoming addicted to drugs. This means that a person’s tendency towards drug addiction may be determined by his physiological and biochemical makeup. In other words, the said tendency can be genetically inherited. But this factor needs further explaining; thus, a person with an addictive personality has probably inherited some factors that heighten vulnerability but do not make it inevitable that addiction to drugs will happen.

Psychological and environmental factors are those often linked to the occurrence of drug addiction. We have heard of many cases of people being driven to drug abuse because of problems in the family, poor living conditions, lack of confidence in oneself, social pressures, and stress. Of course, these factors alone do not make drug addiction incapable of being evaded.

What Causes Addiction?

Addiction causes are not yet fully understood.

The prevailing attitude toward addiction has been disapproval as addiction was seen as personal failure, resulting from moral  weakness and a lack of discipline. The stigma has not been entirely lost and scientific evidence suggests that addition is primarily a biological phenomenon.

In some circles addiction has been described as a disease of the brain.

Addiction researchers have asserted that alcoholism and other dependent states have a genetic bases. Alcohol dependence was thought to be influenced by genes as well as the environment as the risk for alcohol related problems seemed to be higher in the children of alcoholics.

While studies may support the genetic predisposition, identifying the specific genes that lead to the increased risk of addiction has been laborious, but it has been confirmed that that people with a different form of a certain gene are more susceptible to addiction. It is hope that further research into gene therapy can actually lead to the development of new treatment for alcoholics and other drug dependencies.

Research documenting the impact of drugs on the brain may shed some light on why some people may be more prone to addiction than others.

Drug abuse along with other potentially addictive activities such as gambling, sex, or some cases shopping causes the brain to brain to release dopamine, a chemical involved in experiencing pleasure. The surge in dopamine production appears to be powerful enough to compel the user to keep taking the drug or engaging in the behaviour. With prolonged use, the drugs can alter the brain so that experiencing pleasure without the drug is near impossible. and at this point the drug is used to stave off painful withdrawal symptoms. Based on the research, the theory has been surmised that people who are deficient in dopamine are more likely to become addicts.

While most agree that biology may play an important part in addiction, there is still some division, as one group believes that addiction is primarily a behavioral problem that is influenced by biology. They contend that labeling addiction as medical condition similar to diabetes or heart disease can create a false impression that addicts have no control over their own behavior. In the view of this group, people become addicts mostly because of their behavior and not brain chemistry.

There is still very much to learn about how the brain actually works and research is continuing and questions are still being asked.

Critics contend the medical theory of addiction may be flawed, because most people who take drugs do not become addicted.

Addiction to nicotine, which is purportedly more addictive than heroin, can be kicked solely on willpower. The dopamine theory has also come under some criticism with the assertion that the range of activities that stimulate the pleasure centers in the brain far too wide to denote any behavioral tendencies. Addiction to sex, chocolate,work or eating are not related. “Chocolate stimulates the pleasure centers, but only a few people may compulsively eat chocolate or gamble”

The contrasting perspectives on addiction, biological or behavioral has influenced debate over the best treatment for addiction.

Counseling and medication is favored by those who believe that addiction is a disease and believe that controlled abstinence may be  the best way to break the habit.

In contrast,opponents of the disease model may insist that addiction can be treated without any psychological or medical intervention.

Research and studies continues to be warranted into finding the best and most effective treatment for addiction.

Addiction Causes Misery

Various forms of addiction like alcoholism, smoking, intake of drugs, immoral habits ruin not only the user but also those associated with him. In many parts of the world, addictions are the cause of major health problems.

How many families have been ruined? How many have spent their last penny on their addictions rather than provide for their hungry children? The results are indeed alarming and on the heavy rise. Addictions lead to much unhappiness and often families are destroyed and torn apart.

The persons who are having addiction must first admit that they have problems. They must be honest with themselves and others. They must also have the support of their family and friends, who should make them, realize that they are not only ruining their own live but also their close family members too.

Bad habits like taking drugs are serious matters to be looked at. The health of the person will deteriorate and affect his mental condition also. This person must be made to realize that his or her life is not one that should be wasted and that God has given a body only to make use of, not destroy by taking poisonous substances like drugs and drinks. Prayer and counseling must be given to the person concerned to save life.

Immoral practices also are rising especially with the added technology of the web. People now resort to any means to make money. This will affect not only their health but their family life too. The very basis of society is a strong family. The only true friends will be close family members in times of need. The persons who are immorally inclined must be made to understand that youth passes with time and as age progresses, the only remaining support will be that of those who really love for love’s sake. Money can be and must be earned through rightful means in order to last and give happiness to everyone.

The people who have gone wayward must not however be scorned or ridiculed; instead they must be lovingly cajoled and brought back to normal life with continued persuasion. Prayer and God’s grace can save the black sheep. An environment of love must be created to rescue addicted people by talking. Sweet and true words with honesty will transform such persons. Dedication is a must. Addicted people may pose problems of many sorts, even abuse, but if you really love and care, then you should try to bring back into life a person who was absolutely wonderful not long ago until the ghost of bad habits took possession.

Love, prayer, support, determination and dedication are the main tools one should use to curb addiction.

Addiction Isn’t All In You’re Head

Traditionally, much discussion about addiction causes and the treatments has centered on the mind. The weak-minded and weak willed were more likely to become addicted, and treatment required a strengthening of mind and will. Somehow, it’s the addicts fault – whether the object of addiction is drugs, alcohol, smoking food, sex, gambling or any other “abnormal” craving.

Increasingly, however, research is showing that both cause and treatment for addiction centers on the brain – not just in the mind. Much as presence of certain genes is thought to trigger cancer and a host of other diseases, so now is the medical community learning that many addiction core causes and cures result from a variety of genes specific to different ailments. For example, the gene that causes food addiction is different from the one that causes alcohol addiction.
Here’s how it unfolds: the majority of people are born with about 400,000 brain receptor sites for the chemical dopamine, crucial to processing the stressful events of life. About one-third of the population, carriers of an addiction gene, is born with only half as many receptor sited, so dopamine can’t permeate the brain as it does in the non-addictive brain. These people have great difficulty processing stress, and tend to be anxious, depressed and on edge, as in the case of “road rage”.

Food, sex, alcohol, drugs gambling – as well as other substances and behaviors – trigger dopamine release. in the receptor-deficient population, the resulting dopamine flood tied to the specific addiction gene in that person’s body causes the brain to release a secondary, highly addictive chemical. From then on, the person intensely craves the feeling of normalcy brought about by the addictive substance.

In the case of substances like alcohol and drugs, use destroys more dopamine receptor sites, so increasing amounts of the substance are needed to create the same high. this accounts for the ever-increasing quantities of alcohol and drugs consumed to feel good and achieve some measure of stress relief.

Fortunately there are remedies for this physiologically based addiction cures. Treatments featuring proprietary mixes of amino acids, peptides, vitamins, minerals and certain nutrients are shown to help to reverse the genetic damage. Administered intravenously or orally, these treatments help repair the damage – thereby boosting the brain’s ability to produce dopamine.

Our Third Generation Genetic Repair System program, for example, is administered intravenously under the supervision of a licensed physician for about 10 days. While it has consistently produced dramatic results in reversing physiological addictions, a comprehensive psychological counseling program that supports the continuation of the persons newfound lifestyle also is critically important to long-term success.