Effects of Addiction
Substance Addiction Risks
The effects of addiction can be very serious. Substance addiction is the uncontrollable urge to consume alcohol or drugs. There can often be several substance addictions occurring at once. Alcoholics may also be use cocaine. Heroin addicts may also be addicted to tablets. Both alcoholics and drug users may be smokers.
Substance addiction is the most observable form of addiction and is present almost everywhere in the world. The most common psychoactive substance in the world is alcohol. Alcohol is constantly advertised around the world and alcohol companies often sponsor sports teams. Tobacco is the second most common drug in the world and despite knowledge of its dangers, remains popular. Western countries have brought in measures to restrict tobacco consumption in recent years, but the demand is still high. The use of cannabis, cocaine, heroin, crystal methamphetamines and varying forms of tablets are on the rise. Even medically restricted pharmaceuticals are being more and more misused. Physical addiction to drugs has several negative consequences. You can get specific advice by contacting us here.
Substance addiction to alcohol, tobacco, or drugs takes a financial toll on the victim. Some drugs cost more than others, depending on the difficulty of production, and the speed at which tolerance develops. Alcohol addiction can cost a lot of money in the long term. However, unless you’re addicted to expensive booze, you won’t bankrupt yourself in a day. Craic cocaine addiction is another story. As the effects only last a few minutes, and the cravings are so strong, it quickly becomes expensive. Cigarette prices in a lot of countries are quite high. The cost of a pack is often more than the minimum hourly wage.
In addition to the cost of the substances, it’s also necessary to bear in mind medical costs. Increased insurance premiums and more frequent doctor and dentist visits have to be paid for by someone. Also, alcohol and drug-related injuries cost hospitals huge sums of money, passed down onto taxpayers.
Substance addictions are hugely time-consuming. Drug addicts are some of the hardest workers in the country, as they are hustling 7 days a week. For heavy addicts, the time they spend getting enough money and consuming drugs takes up most of their days. Alcoholics can spend hours every day in bars. Smokers can spend as much as an hour a day damaging themselves. You could spend this time developing relationships. As most addicts are trying to escape unpleasant feelings or memories, they are delaying addressing their issues. These are issues that will have to be addressed sooner or later. As tolerance builds up to substances, addicts have to consume more and more. This takes up more and more time. You can earn the money you spent back. You can’t get back time.
The personal and professional relationships of substance addicts are usually negatively affected. Alcoholics and drug addicts typically can’t offer the necessary amount of love and support to partners and children. More so, the lack of access to their drug can cause them to become unpleasant or even violent. Being in an altered state of mind as a result of the drug can also cause indifference or violence. This all puts a strain on personal relationships. Addicts typically aren’t able to perform their jobs to the maximum efficiency or at least not for long. The cruel irony of this is that addiction often causes its victims to become isolated and lonely. This generally increased their desire to arrive at an altered mental state more often.
Most forms of addictive drugs are illegal. Cocaine, heroin, LSD, unprescribed tablets, and cannabis are illegal in most of the world. You have a far higher risk of going to prison if you are a drug addict. Alcohol, while legal in the majority of countries in the world, can still result in legal altercations. People are more likely to crash their cars while drunk. Alcoholics who are drunk most of the time will usually amass a large criminal record, albeit of petty crimes. Substance addiction requires constant funding. A lot of addicts find themselves unable to support their addiction and so turn to crime. Theft, dealing, and prostitution are commonplace activities. These all bring their legal risks.
Substance misuse poses massive health risks. The most obvious consequence of them all is the cancer rate amongst smokers. Alcohol and other drugs can also cause cancer, along with numerous other issues. Intravenous drug users are very prone to blood diseases such as HIV/AIDS, and Hepatitis B & C. Tablets can cause damage to the brain, liver, kidneys, and other organs. Tablets are particularly dangerous as often there is no way of telling what was in them unless they came straight from a pharmacy. Obesity and heart disease can often follow substance addiction. Substance addicts are more prone to falls and injuries. Sustained substance use can also cause physical brain damage. Dopamine production loss, damage to memory, and even permanent psychosis can follow prolonged substance misuse.
Substance addiction usually causes psychological issues such as anxiety, depression, and psychosis. While these disorders may already have been present in the victim, causing the addiction, they can be enhanced more so. Feeling of hopelessness, failure, and isolation typically accompany substance addiction.
Behavioral Addiction Risks
Behavioural addiction is the compulsion to engage in certain actions. Forms of behavioural addiction include gambling, video gaming, stealing, watching pornography, shopping, and hoarding. Behavioural addicts get a high from performing an activity and are driven to repeat the activity again and again. Like in substance addiction, the tolerance of the addict typically increases over time. This resulting in him or her spending more time engaging in the activity. There can be several negative consequences of behavioural addiction. You can get specific advice by contacting us here.
The most obvious consequence of behavioural addiction is usually the financial impact it makes. Addicts will often spend huge amounts of money to maintain their addiction. This is most apparent with gamblers who can bankrupt themselves easily due to constant betting. Horseracing, sports, cards, slot machines, and other mediums of gambling result in the exchange of billions of euros annually. Video game addiction can also be very expensive, especially with the endless add-on bundles and bonus content being offered by developers. Shopping addiction can lead to bankruptcy in little or no time and has caused a detriment to people since money was first created.
Behavioural addictions cost more than just money. They are typically a huge drain on the victim’s time. Hours can be dedicated to the compulsion with some people spending all their days in the grips of it. Addicts can leave work or school, engage in their addiction all day, sleep for a few hours and start all over again. Even worse, some people forgo work or education in place of engaging altogether. This occurs most frequently with people who have the financial means to support themselves without working, whether their rich or in receipt of social welfare.
The personal and professional relationships of addicts are often compromised. Their urge to engage in the behavioural usually takes precedence over time spent with loved ones’. On top of this, they will often neglect their relationships with people they need to interact with. These can include their boss, their landlord, their probation officer, medical professionals, etc. As humans are social animals, we rely on the support and love of others. When addiction interferes with this, feelings of isolation and loneliness may set in.
A lot of legal issues can be caused by behavioural addictions. This is especially the case when the behaviour in question is illegal. Certain types of activities, such as kleptomania (the addiction to stealing) and illegal gambling (such as dog or cockfights) can result in prison sentences. The addiction to certain types of pornography can also result in prosecution. Gamblers can also amass large debts. The result of this can be court appearances.
Even though behavioural addictions don’t seem as physically dangerous as substance addictions, they can still have negative effects. Eating disorders can be caused by an addiction to food, or the desire to be skinny. These forms of addiction can result in numerous health risks. If self-harming develops as an addiction, it can result in physical injury also. Chronic gamblers may be at risk of high blood pressure and stress which can cause heart attacks and jeopardize their immune systems. Even hoarding can be life-threatening. The Collyer brothers of New York were two famous hoarders. One brother (Langley) set booby traps around to catch intruders. While bringing food to his disabled brother, he sprung one, causing a huge amount of their hoarder property to fall on him. He suffocated which his brother starved to death.
Behavioural addictions often take an immense psychological toll on the victim. Some addicts can find themselves leading double lives, for fear of others judging their irrational behaviour. They often cause stress and anxiety. You might experience feelings of losing control. Even things like the fear of travelling somewhere where there might not be good internet access or access to certain products can cause distress. Consequently, the victim will suffer psychologically.
Addiction Counselling Accreditation
All our counsellors are accredited by Addiction Counsellors of Ireland. ACI is the dedicated accrediting body for dependency specific counsellors in Ireland. To learn more about ACI, including their code of ethics, please visit their website: http://www.addictioncounsellors.ie