What Substance Abuse Really Does
Every time someone goes out for a drink or experiments with new drugs, even if it’s just for fun, they make a choice. That choice is to say yes to a dangerous and potentially addictive substance and to absorb it in the body. There is more to it than the damage that this makes for one evening. There is the risk of addiction taking over your life. Addiction is a challenging topic; that can seem difficult to describe for those who are suffering from it. Are you really addicted to alcohol or is it just a few glasses now and there? It’s important to know the difference to be able to take action.
Substance abuse is more than a simple disruption of your social life. It’s the continual damages that you do to your physical health that gradually led to one in four deaths in the USA being caused by illicit drug use and excessive alcohol consumption. The dark truth of substance abuse is that addiction kills, every year over 40,000 people are killed by the consequences of their behavior. What they don’t realize is that, even if they are careful about overdosing, the majority of long-term drug and alcohol abusers don’t live out to see their 60s and sometimes even their 50s.
There are many lasting physical damages that are related to addiction: Opiates can cause respiratory depression and can inhibit how much oxygen reaches the brain; injections and alcohol lead to a decreased liver function ; MDMA drugs are linked to severe kidney failure and muscle breakdown; some hallucinogenic drugs are associated with impaired coordination and vision as well as emotional, and cognitive deficits; finally, drugs raise heart rate and can lead to heart attacks and strokes.
The Help That You Can Receive
It’s never easy to admit to yourself and to your family that you have an addiction problem. It is even harder to confront an addict with their problem. But there is medical support available for all addicts to help them gain back control over their lives and destroy their addiction before it destroys them.
It’s important to seek medical attention as soon as you start noticing health issues related to the physical risks mentioned above: Loss of lung capacity, troubled thinking, muscle breakdown, pain in the lower back, loss of eyesight, uncoordinated movements, difficulty reconnecting with emotion or information, and elevated heart rate.
Medical insurances are now offering drug and alcohol rehab services within their coverage, such as the Aetna coverage. It is important to note that for health insurances addiction is not a physical illness, but it is a mental health condition.
Is Addiction A Mental Illness?
Addictions, and specifically substance abuse, are responsible for brain damages. Indeed, they cause a disruption of the fundamental brain functions by creating new priorities that will come before natural human needs and desires. This causes compulsive behaviors that can’t be controlled without medical support. The creation of impulses that override over behaviors is a common pattern of mental illnesses and consequently places addiction within the same definition.