In 2019, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) reported that 20.4 million
Americans were diagnosed with a substance use disorder. Drug use is typically referred to as a
single episode of use, while drug abuse is repeated and continued use of the substance. Drug
use can lead to abuse which leads to addiction. Drug abuse and addiction have several
negative consequences. Your emotional, behavioral, physical, and social well-being is all
affected by drug abuse.
According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), addiction is a brain disease
that is complex, chronic, and involves both brain circuitry and dysfunctional behaviors. Addiction
disrupts the ability to function normally.
Abusing drugs can lead to risks including addiciton and death. Understand the effects of substances on your body and the consequences of using them.
● Alcohol While legal to buy and use, alcohol is one of the most commonly abused substances and can lead to very dangerous consequences. Heavy and repeated alcohol use can cause damage to the brain and organs. Alcohol can damage the brain’s ability to problem-solve, memory and learning, and coordination.
● Methamphetamine Methamphetamine is a highly addictive substance. Methamphetamine targets the central nervous system and affects several areas of the brain. The long-term health risks of meth addiction range from brain damage and depression to deadly health conditions from heart attacks to strokes.
● Cocaine Cocaine is a powerful stimulant with highly addictive properties. Long-term changes in the brain’s reward system begin happening after the frequent use of cocaine. There are short and long-term effects from the use of cocaine that are devastating to the mind and body.
● Opiates While opiates can be legally prescribed for pain relief, they have highly addictive properties. Overdose and dependency are common among users. The short and long-term effects of opiate misuse can be devastating. Physical health and wellness, as well as mental health, are all negatively affected by the misuse of opiates.
● Hallucinogens Hallucinogens are psychoactive substances that alter a person’s perception and reality. These psychedelic drugs are illegal and may cause significant lasting psychological issues. Hallucinogens can have a significant impact on the brain and body. Prolonged misuse of hallucinogens can lead to severe psychological issues including anxiety, weight loss, and speech problems.
● Heroin Heroin is a highly dangerous and illegal opioid drug that is processed from morphine. Heroin causes severe damage to physical and mental health. Heroin binds to opioid receptors in the brain and releases dopamine, inducing a feeling of pleasure. This makes heroin extremely addictive.
Addiction causes a loss of control and an inability to make decisions which leads to negative
consequences. Understand the symptoms of drug addiction.
Common symptoms of drug addiction include:
Specific treatment for drug abuse or dependence will be determined by a treatment provider based on:
Recovery from drug addiction is possible. Treatment options are available and vary based upon
individual needs. Treatment may include medical detox, inpatient rehab, outpatient programs, or
individual and group therapy. It is advised to detox from certain substances under medical care.
If you or a loved one are seeking treatment for a substance use disorder, Arista Recovery is
here to help with drug addiction treatment programs. Call us today to speak with an addiction
specialist and have any questions or concerns answered!
*This is a self-assessment. Your results are not a proper diagnosis. Please consult your doctor for a clinical diagnosis and full evaluation.