Drug Use: Why Do People Become Addicted To Drugs? | Psychoactive Drugs Vs Addictive Drugs

Drugs of one sort or another are a part of almost everyone’s life. From infancy on, most people take Vitamins, Aspirin, Cold-Relief medicine and the like, and the surveys find that 80 percent of adults in the United States have taken an over the counter pain reliever in the last six months. However, these drugs rarely produce an altered state of consciousness.

Psychoactive Definition:

“Psychoactive drugs lead to an altered state of consciousness. In Psychoactive drugs influence a person emotions, perceptions and behavior”

Psychoactive Drugs Effects:

In contrast, some substances known as Psychoactive drugs lead to an altered state of consciousness. In Psychoactive drugs influence, a person emotions, perceptions, and behavior- Yet even this category of drugs is common in most of our lives. If you have ever had a cup of coffee or sipped a beer. You have to take a Psychoactive drug.

A large number of individuals have used more potent and dangerous Psychoactive drugs than coffee and beer, for instance, surveys find that 41 percent of high school seniors have used an illegal drug in the last year. In addition, 30 percent report having been drunk on alcohol. The figures for the adult population are even higher.

Addictive Drugs Definition:

The most dangerous drugs are addictive. Addictive drugs produce a biological or psychological dependence and affect the user and analyze changes, and take off from the leads to a craving for the drug that in some cases may be nearly irresistible.

Addictions may be biologically based:

The body becomes so accustomed to functioning in the presence of a drug that it cannot function in its absence. Or they may be psychologically based, in which case people believe that they need the drug to respond to the stresses of daily living. Although we generally associate addictions with drugs such as heroin, everyday stories of drugs such as caffeine (found in coffee) and nicotine (found in cigarettes) have addictive aspects as well.

We know surprisingly little about the underlying cause of addiction. One of the problems in identifying those causes in that different drugs (such as alcohol and cocaine) affect the brain in very different ways – Yet may be equally addicting.

Furthermore, it takes longer to become addicted to some drugs than to others, even though the ultimate consequences of addictions may be equally grave.

Figure:

How many teenagers use drugs? The result of the most recent comprehensive survey of 14,000 high school seniors across the United States shows the percentage of respondents who have used the various substance for non-medical purposes at least once.

Can you think of any reasons why teenagers, as opposed to older people, might be particularly likely to use drugs?

How Do Drugs Affect The Brain:

Off course, drugs vary widely in the effects they have a user, in part because they affect the nervous system in very different ways. Some drugs alter the limbic system, and other affect the operation of specific neurotransmitter across the synapses of neurons. For example, some drugs block or enhance the release of neurotransmitters, other blocks the receipt or the removal of neurotransmitters, and still, others mimic the effect of the particular neurotransmitters.

Why Do People Take Drugs In The First Place?

They are many reasons, ranging from the perceived pleasure of the experience itself, to escape a drug-induced high affords from the everyday pressures of life to an attempt to achieve a religious or spiritual state. However, others factors, ones that have little to do with the nature of the experience itself, also led people to try drugs.

For instance, the alleged drugs use of well-known role models (such as baseball player Bryce Harper and film star Mary-Kate Olsen) the easy availability of some illegal drugs, and peer pressure all play a role in the decision to use drugs. In some cases, the motive is simply the thrill of trying something new. Finally, the sense of helplessness experienced by unemployed individuals trapped in lives of poverty may lead them to try drugs as a way of escaping from the bleakness of their lives.

Regardless of the forces that lead a person to begin using a drug, drug addiction is among the most difficult of all behaviors to modify, even with extensive treatment.

Because of the difficulty in treating drug problems, there is little disagreement that the best hope for dealing with the overall societal problem of substance abuse is to prevent people from becoming people involved with drugs in the first place.

Drug Abuse Resistance Education:

However, there is a little accord on how to accomplish this goal. Even programs widely publicized for their effectiveness such as D.A.R.E (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) are of questionable helpfulness.

Used in more than 80 percent school districts in the United States, D.A.R.E consists of series of seventeen lessons on the dangers of drugs, alcohol, and gangs taught to fifth and sixth graders by police officers. The program is highly popular with school officials, parents, and politicians.

The problem: several well-controlled evaluations have been unable to demonstrate that the D.A.R.E program is effective in reducing drug use over the long term.

 

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