Drug Addiction & Its Effects on Individual & Family (2022)

Drug Addiction & Its Effects on Individual & Family (1)

In This Article

  • What is Drug Addiction?
  • Effects of Drug Abuse on an Individual
  • Effects of Drug Abuse on a Family
  • How Does a Parent’s Drug Problem Affect the Lives of Other Family Members?
  • How to Overcome the Problem of Drug Addiction
(Video) Wasted: Exposing the Family Effect of Addiction | Sam Fowler | TEDxFurmanU

Drug addiction is a disease that affects the brain and behaviour of the person taking drugs. People who have drug addiction have an uncontrollable craving for the drugs of their choice. Drug addiction is a major problem which affects the lives of the addicts and those who are close to them. It can take a toll on the quality of life of the addicted person as well as his loved ones. Although most addicts are in denial, the impact of their behaviour is apparent in their daily life.

What is Drug Addiction?

Drug addiction, also known as substance use disorder is a disease that affects the mind and behaviour of the affected person. The person addicted to drugs physically and psychologically starts depending on certain mind-altering substances. It is categorised as a neurobiological disease, as the drugs affect the brain and even change its structure and function to reinforce the addiction. The changes in the brain can be long-lasting, and if not treated in time,it can be fatal. People struggling with drug addiction often have a dependency on these substances and feel that they cannot function normally without them.

Effects of Drug Abuse on an Individual

People who use drugs experience a range of physical and psychological effects that can be narrowed down to the following:

  • People addicted to marijuana and alcohol may have impaired motor skills. Distorted time and decreased memory are some of the other short-term side effects of this addiction.
  • People who quit drugs abruptly after a period of continuous use may experience major withdrawal symptoms, which can range from mild to serious. Withdrawal causes agitation, muscle cramps, vomiting, and delirium.
  • Drug tolerance is another effect that occurs with the continuous use of a drug. Tolerance refers to the addict’s need for increasing amounts of the drug to get the same initial effect or ‘high’
  • People who share needles to inject drugs can be at the risk of hepatitis or HIV.
  • Many drug addicts often resort to criminal behaviour to get money to procure drugs.
  • People who are addicted to hard drugs may exhibit signs ofdepression, anxiety, and fatigue.

Drug Addiction & Its Effects on Individual & Family (2)

Effects of Drug Abuse on a Family

A person who is addicted to drugs not only spoils his life but also his family’s. Here is how the lives of a drug addict’s family members are affected:

(Video) The Impact of Addiction on a Family

  • Family members often play an unconscious role in the habits of an addict. The drug abuse could be a result of abandonment, enabling (where families defend or cover up addicts for various reasons) or simply by ignoring the problem.
  • Trust in the family member can be broken as a result of finding out that a member is an addict. When people realize that there’s somebody in their family with a dark side, it leads to a myriad of feelings such as anger, guilt, shame resentment etc.
  • The health of addicts and family members who are overly concerned might decline because of the constant stress and worry.
  • Being a drug addict makes it difficult to keep a job. It can also affect a family member to find employment if the word gets out.

How Does a Parent’s Drug Problem Affect the Lives of Other Family Members?

If a parent is addicted to drugs, then he might not be in a mental state to pay attention to his children. He might not be able to fulfil his responsibilities as a parent. Family members who try to help the parent may often get pulled into trouble themselves.

How Does a Partner’s Drug Problem Affect the Life of the Other Partner?

Living with a partner who is addicted to drugs is difficult. The addicted partner may often blame others or his partner when things go wrong. This can lead their partner to feel insecure and she may try to hide the problem from her family and friends.

How Does a Parent’s Drug Addiction Affect the Lives of His Children?

Often the children of drug addict parents take on the roles of their parents to support the family and end up getting stuck in that role with a disregard for their own personal growth. Such children often end up as:

  • The family heroes who are responsible and works hard to keep things on track. Although they appear successful, they feel insecure and resentful on the inside.
  • The dreamers; although they may seem content, they are usually lonely. They are also easily hurt but are good at hiding it along with their feelings of low self-esteem and loneliness.

Drug Addiction & Its Effects on Individual & Family (3)

How Does a Son or Daughter with the Problem of Drug AddictionAffect the Lives of the Whole Family?

When children become drug addicts, their whole family falls into pieces. Parents also experience a fall out with each other as they don’t understand where they went wrong and what should they have done to fix the problem. Parents may give more attention to the drug user which might make the other children feel neglected. In short, the peace in the house is often disturbed.

(Video) The Effects of Drug Addiction on Family Members

How to Overcome the Problem of Drug Addiction

Overcoming a drug addiction problem needs a holistic approach. The person needs to heal physically and psychologically to let go of the old patterns of thoughts and habit. Here are a few tips on how to go about it.

1. Seek Professional Help

The deeper the addiction, the more it necessitates professional help. Since recovery is hard and people relapse all the time when they try on their own, seeking professional help with drug addiction is an important step. Therapists can chart out structured programs for the drug addict which may help them heal sooner.

2. Exercise

Exercising regularly can help build a routine. Exercise also brings back the body’s natural balance upset by long drug abuse. A person who is addicted to drugs should exercise regularly as it can help a person heal quickly. Practising yoga and meditation can improve the mood of the person and help him quit drugs.

3. Eat Healthy Foods

Proper nutrition is the key to good health and happiness. Therefore, a person addicted to drugs should eathealthy food.

4. Be Around Supportive People

Being around with people who have an addiction problem is bad for a person who is on the road to recovery. It’s best to avoid the company of such people. If you really want to recover, you should hang out with people who are optimistic and are leading a healthy life.

(Video) Addiction Impacts the Entire Family: Pearls for Providers

5. Make Time for Your Hobbies

Free time should never be allowed to go waste, it can often lead to relapse as the mind drifts back into desire. To not think about drugs at all, you will have to keep yourmind busy. Find a good distraction. Make time for your hobby and keep your mind busy as it will help with the recovery process. A hobby will give you a sense of joy and purpose which will help replace old unhealthy thoughts and habits.

6. Volunteer

Finding a cause that is worthy of support is a good way to change the perspective on their life for those in recovery. Helping those in need and giving back to the community builds a sense of nobility and helps gain friendships of people who share such common goals.

7. Confide in a Trusted Friend

Talking things out and sharing thoughts and experiences with a trusted friend can help sort out the mind and ease things to a great deal. A local support group for addiction also works well.

8. Practise Mindfulness

Being present in the moment and being completely aware of the task at handcan help you ease stress and anxiety and prevent your mind from drifting into old patterns. You can also trymeditation.

9. Seek What Makes Living Meaningful

Addicts often have suicidal thoughts and tendencies. The only way to ward off the dangers of it is to search for something that gives meaning to your life.

(Video) How Drug Addiction Affects Family Members | Jason's Journey Ep. 3

Drug addiction can start due to various reasons but fortunately, there’s help for addiction problems of all magnitude. With counselling and major lifestyle changes, it is possible to beat the addiction and live a healthy life.

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How can drugs affect your friends and family? ›

Many family members and friends may see their loved ones deal with harsh side effects of drugs or become angry or violent when under the influence. Others may notice their loved ones lose weight rapidly and become almost unrecognizable.

What are the effects of substance use and abuse on the family and community? ›

The negative impacts of parental SUDs on the family include disruption of attachment, rituals, roles, routines, communication, social life, and finances. Families in which there is a parental SUD are characterized by an environment of secrecy, loss, conflict, violence or abuse, emotional chaos, role reversal, and fear.

How does addiction affect a person's life? ›

People with addiction often have one or more associated health issues, which could include lung or heart disease, stroke, cancer, or mental health conditions. Imaging scans, chest X-rays, and blood tests can show the damaging effects of long-term drug use throughout the body.

How does addiction affect the entire family? ›

Early exposure to a home divided by drug use can cause a child to feel emotionally and physically neglected and unsafe. As a result, they can become more mentally and emotionally unstable. Children may develop extreme guilt and self-blame for a parent's substance abuse.

How does drug addiction affect your relationship with other people? ›

Loss of Trust

Deception, secrecy, and unexplainable distancing from someone who may be dealing with addiction can quickly rob the relationship of trust. These issues are mostly felt along with things like loss of respect, resentment, and disloyalty.

What are 5 effects of drug abuse? ›

Side effects of drug addiction may include:

Nausea and abdominal pain, which can also lead to changes in appetite and weight loss. Increased strain on the liver, which puts the person at risk of significant liver damage or liver failure. Seizures, stroke, mental confusion and brain damage. Lung disease.

What is drug abuse and its effect? ›

Drug abuse or substance abuse refers to the use of certain chemicals for the purpose of creating pleasurable effects on the brain. There are over 190 million drug users around the world and the problem has been increasing at alarming rates, especially among young adults under the age of 30.

What are the effects of drug abuse on youths? ›

Substance-abusing youth are at higher risk than nonusers for mental health problems, including depression, conduct problems, personality disorders, suicidal thoughts, attempted suicide, and suicide.

What is the main causes of drug abuse? ›

Peer pressure is a strong factor in starting to use and misuse drugs, particularly for young people. Lack of family involvement. Difficult family situations or lack of a bond with your parents or siblings may increase the risk of addiction, as can a lack of parental supervision. Early use.

What are the 10 causes of drug abuse? ›

Causes of Substance Use Disorders
  • Family history of addiction.
  • Sleep problems.
  • Chronic pain.
  • Financial difficulties.
  • Divorce or the loss of a loved one.
  • Long-term tobacco habit.
  • Tense home environment.
  • Lack of parental attachment in childhood.
11 Dec 2017

How can we prevent drug abuse? ›

  1. study habits and academic support;
  2. communication;
  3. peer relationships;
  4. self-efficacy and assertiveness;
  5. drug resistance skills;
  6. reinforcement of anti-drug attitudes; and.
  7. strengthening of personal commitments against drug abuse.

What are the three major influences on teenage drug use? ›

Family history of substance use. Favorable parental attitudes towards the behavior. Poor parental monitoring.

What are three ways you can help someone who is addicted to drugs? ›

7 Tips for Helping Someone with an Addiction
  • Tip #1: Educate Yourself. Get information about addictions. ...
  • Tip #2: Get Support. ...
  • Tip #3: Get Counseling. ...
  • Tip #4: Seek Specialty Help. ...
  • Tip #5: Don't Enable. ...
  • Tip #6: Have Realistic Expectations. ...
  • Tip #7: Take Care of Yourself.
4 Sept 2013

What other social issues are related to the problem of drug abuse? ›

Drug abuse is the catalyst for many major social problems, including drugged driving, violence, stress, and child abuse, and it can further lead to homelessness, crime, and joblessness.

How does drug abuse affect mental health? ›

If you or someone you care about is chronically using drugs or alcohol it can lead to changes in the brain, which can lead to mental health issues including paranoia, depression, anxiety, aggression, hallucinations, and other problems.

What is drug abuse in simple terms? ›

Listen to pronunciation. (...uh-BYOOS) The use of illegal drugs or the use of prescription or over-the-counter drugs for purposes other than those for which they are meant to be used, or in excessive amounts. Drug abuse may lead to social, physical, emotional, and job-related problems.

What is the first step of the addiction cycle? ›

First Use. The first step to addiction is trying the substance. It can be as fast as taking the first drink or smoking a cigarette. Or, people may have used drugs in the past without developing a dependency, but are now moving on to a more addictive substance.

How do drugs affect personality? ›

Addiction often leads to risky or unethical behavior. As noted above, studies have found that prolonged substance use impairs your prefrontal cortex, which is involved with planning, attention, emotional regulation, and self-control. It's also involved with foresight.

How does drug affect the society? ›

Moreover, absenteeism, lost productivity, and increased use of medical and insurance benefits by employees who abuse drugs affect a business financially. The economic consequences of drug abuse severely burden federal, state, and local government resources and, ultimately, the taxpayer.

How does drugs affect you emotionally and physically? ›

Drugs affect a part of the brain known as the limbic system. This is the area responsible for processing our emotions. Drug-related changes to this area can contribute to depressed mood, mood swings, emotional outbursts, and persistent irritability.

What are examples of drug abuse? ›

11 Types of Drug Abuse
  • Stimulant Abuse.
  • Cocaine Abuse.
  • Adderall Abuse.
  • Meth Abuse.
  • Opioid Abuse.
  • Heroin Abuse.
  • Prescription Painkillers.
  • Sedative Abuse.

How do drugs affect teenagers physically? ›

The short- and long-term physical effects related to teenage drug use will vary from teen to teen. Teenage drug abuse can cause dangerous health issues such as stroke, lung disease, cancer, infections (e.g., hepatitis, HIV, AIDS, etc.), and heart disease.

What are the causes of drug abuse among students? ›

Many factors have been identified to be responsible for drug abuse among young people, these include: experimental curiosity, peer pressure, poor socio-economic condition at homes and the need for extra energy for daily activities among others.

How do drugs harm children? ›

Illegal drugs can damage the brain, heart, and other important organs. Cocaine, for instance, can cause a heart attack - even in a kid or teen. While using drugs, people are also less able to do well in school, sports, and other activities. It's often harder to think clearly and make good decisions.

What is the best solution to drug abuse and misuse? ›

Prevention is the best strategy. These prevention programs work to boost protective factors and eliminate or reduce risk factors for drug use. The programs are designed for various ages and can be used in individual or group settings, such as the school and home.

What are the 10 ways to say no to drugs? ›

How to Say No to Drugs and Alcohol
  1. Make an excuse.
  2. Use a little humor.
  3. Change the subject.
  4. Offer to be the designated driver.
  5. Act like you're too busy.
  6. Explain the dangers of drugs and alcohol.
  7. Be honest.
  8. Keep saying no.

What is the role of family for the prevention of drug abuse? ›

6 June 2013 - Families have the potential to be the most powerful protective force in the lives of children and youth. Healthy family relationships prevent children and adolescents from engaging in drug use, crime and risky behaviour.

How do drugs affect society? ›

Communities also suffer from the effects of drug addiction. Overall, substance abuse costs the United States more than $740 billion a year in terms of health care, work productivity and crime; of that figure, illicit drug abuse costs $193 billion and prescription opioid abuse costs another $78.5 billion.

What is drug abuse and its effect? ›

What is Drug Abuse? Clinically known as substance use disorder, drug abuse or addiction is caused by the habitual taking of addictive substances. Drugs include alcohol, marijuana, hallucinogens and opioids. Substance use disorder is a disease, causing people to compulsively use drugs despite consequences.

What are the three major influences on teenage drug use? ›

Family history of substance use. Favorable parental attitudes towards the behavior. Poor parental monitoring.

How does drug abuse affect education? ›

Research shows that there is a definite link between teen substance abuse and how well you do in school. Teens who abuse drugs have lower grades, a higher rate of absence from school and other activities, and an increased potential for dropping out of school.

What are 5 effects of drug abuse? ›

These problems affect nearly every organ in the body and can include but are not limited to a weakened immune system, heart disease and problems, abdominal pain, strain on the liver, lung disease, mental conditions, and impaired memory, attention, and decision making. Substance abuse also results in behavioral changes.

How do drugs affect behavior? ›

Adults who use drugs can have problems thinking clearly, remembering, and paying attention. They may develop poor social behaviors as a result of their drug use, and their work performance and personal relationships suffer.

What is the main cause of drug abuse? ›

Peer pressure is a strong factor in starting to use and misuse drugs, particularly for young people. Lack of family involvement. Difficult family situations or lack of a bond with your parents or siblings may increase the risk of addiction, as can a lack of parental supervision.

What are the harmful effects of drugs? ›

harm to organs and systems in your body, such as your throat, stomach, lungs, liver, pancreas, heart, brain, nervous system. cancer (such as lung cancer from inhaling drugs) infectious disease, from shared injecting equipment and increased incidence of risk-taking behaviors.

What do you mean by drug addiction? ›

What is drug addiction? Addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing disorder characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use despite adverse consequences. It is considered a brain disorder, because it involves functional changes to brain circuits involved in reward, stress, and self-control.

What are the effects of drug abuse on youths? ›

Substance-abusing youth are at higher risk than nonusers for mental health problems, including depression, conduct problems, personality disorders, suicidal thoughts, attempted suicide, and suicide.

What are the ways to solve the problem of drug abuse? ›

Consider other strategies to prevent teen drug abuse:
  • Know your teen's activities. Pay attention to your teen's whereabouts. ...
  • Establish rules and consequences. ...
  • Know your teen's friends. ...
  • Keep track of prescription drugs. ...
  • Provide support. ...
  • Set a good example.

What are the causes of drug addiction among youth? ›

Top 5 Causes of Teen Drug Use
  • Peer Pressure. One of the main causes of teen drug use is the pressure they feel from friends and even family members.
  • Social Media. Many friends and family members show pictures of using substances on social media. ...
  • The Influence of Culture and Society. ...
  • Curiosity. ...
  • The Desire to be Themselves.
23 Feb 2022

What are the causes of drug abuse among students? ›

Many factors have been identified to be responsible for drug abuse among young people, these include: experimental curiosity, peer pressure, poor socio-economic condition at homes and the need for extra energy for daily activities among others.

What are the psychological causes of drug abuse? ›

Several psychosocial factors have been associated with substance abuse. Particularly, peer pressure, media portrayal of substance-use by celebrities,[6] lucrative advertisements, attractive packaging and expectations of joy are commonly associated with harmful use of substances by the young.

How can we prevent drug abuse in schools? ›

Elements of Good Practice for Drug Prevention
  1. Information dissemination programs which teach primarily about drugs and their effects;
  2. Fear arousal programs that emphasize risks associated with drug use;
  3. Moral appeal programs that teach about the evils of use and;
21 Jul 2022

Why should we say no to drugs? ›

It not only impairs judgement, it diminishes motor skills and mobility. And drugs present a wide variety of health risks and dangers depending on which drug you are using. If you care about your health and fitness, just say NO to Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs.


1. The Ripple Effect of Addiction | Brennan Harlow | TEDxDayton
(TEDx Talks)
2. The new face of fentanyl addiction: Kati's story
(CBC News)
3. Drug Addiction Family Effects and What to do if your Loved One is An Addict
(Lynne Huysamen)
4. How Addiction Happens
(How Addiction Happens)
5. Beating Opioid Addiction | Joy's Story
(Johns Hopkins Medicine)
6. Drug Addiction: Recognizing the Warning Signs
(InterCoast Colleges)

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