There are several factors involved in the causes of drug addiction, but before I list them here's a definition of addiction taken from Wikipedia.
Addiction is the continued use of a mood alerting substance, or behavior despite adverse consequences, or a neurological impairment leading to such behaviors.
Addiction is very common today, and can take on many forms of behavior. I know since everyone in my family was addicted to something. I was addicted to exercise, and Valium, my mother to food, my father to the racetrack where he bet on the horses and so on.
There are more examples of addictions below:
And the list goes on. There are many things in our environment that one can become addicted to; it can lead to anti-social behavior where one does not want to do or interact with anyone or thing other than the addiction substance or pattern of behavior.
I also believe that daily stress and anxiety caused by fear and loss leads many to some form of addiction.
1. Genetics: This is one of the most hidden causes of drug addiction. People who have had a history of alcoholism and drug addiction in their families, including grandparents, are more likely to develop the disease themselves.
If your parents have addiction struggles, chances are you are more susceptible to addiction, especially if your mother was taking drugs during her pregnancy. That’s why drug addiction is more common in some families than in others.
Often times, the addiction gene will skip a generation and show up in one of the grand children.
Also, those who come from families with a history of any kind of addiction are more likely to develop some other form of addiction. For example, someone from an alcoholic family may develop an eating disorder or become a 'packrat' and hoard things.
Even though environmental factors can also have influence, individuals who have been removed from their alcoholic parents and raised by non-addicted individuals still show a higher risk for developing an addiction themselves.
2. Certain Personality Types: Aside from the inherited factors, some people have a personality that is more likely to become drug dependent.
3. Environmental Cause: Children raised by parents who have drug abuse issues are more likely to view substance abuse or certain behaviors as acceptable, making them more likely to engage in the addiction themselves. Individuals from countries where use of a certain substance or engagement in an addictive behavior are prohibited or hard to obtain show a much lower incidence of addiction, pointing to possible environmental factors.
4. Abuse: Children who have been sexually, psychologically, emotionally or physically abused are more likely to become addicts. The addiction becomes a coping mechanism, helping the addict to deal with strong negative emotions surrounding the abuse such as feelings of severe low self-esteem, and possible flashbacks.
5. Emotional Disorders: Those individuals suffering from emotional disorders such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder or post-traumatic stress (PTSD) disorder will often relate to causes of drug abuse and addictive behaviors, especially amongst those who are misdiagnosed or undiagnosed.
Individuals often use drugs, alcohol, food, exercise, or work as a way to self-medicate and escape the symptoms of their primary disorder.
6. Specific Substances can Lead to Causes of Drug Addiction: Certain substances are more addictive than others, and will lead to causes of drug addiction, such as cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine, pain killers such as codeine because of their ability to create dependence after relatively few uses.
7. Low Frustration Tolerance: One common factor found amongst addicts of all types is a low frustration tolerance. Addicts are highly susceptible to the negative effects of stress, often experiencing distress at a relatively low level of frustration. They become easily upset over everyday stress factors, creating a need for escape. They find this escape in their addiction.
8. Social Pressure/Peer Pressure: We all need relationships, and sometimes those relationships cause us to give in to something we otherwise would avoid in order to maintain the relationship such as uses of drugs. Social and Peer pressure is huge and nowhere is this greater than for teens. Kids want to be cool. It begins as a social action, to take the drugs to be a part of the group, to be accepted. It’s not just teenagers, as peer pressure takes so many different forms. There is social etiquette, for example, to take a drink during a party. You'll hear someone say, "I’m only a social drinker." Some people actually believe that Addiction will help you to be accepted and part of the 'popular' group.
9. Access/Availability is another one of the causes of drug addiction: Drugs are everywhere, high school students can tell you this. People sell drugs to the most vulnerable population, children. It’s not just in the stereotypical poor sections of the inner city where drugs are available. Drugs are found in shopping malls, rural schools, private school, on the job in factories, offices and remote job sites.
10. Depression/Loneliness: We want to feel good physically and emotionally all the time and sometimes drugs are the substitution for a healthy life experience. A person in pain wants to numb the pain so they take a drug which numbs the pain and they feel good. One of the causes of drug addiction comes from wanting to escape the pain of the life experience, and for a short while, the drug takes them away and they feel “better.”
11. Severe Anxiety: Sometimes people need help coping with life - the problems of everyday life becomes a struggle and simple things become too much to handle. People who have been clinically diagnosed with anxiety can lead a very good life with medication under the care and observation of a doctor.
But, in the case of drug addiction, it’s about people who need to escape and their drug of choice facilitates that escape.
Beloved God, Holy Spirit, and the Angels
I know that addictive cravings are actually a craving for Divine love. Please help me feel that I am filled with Your ever-present love. I am willing to release any fears that would block me from the awareness of Your love. I ask you to clear away from me the beliefs, patterns, feelings and thoughts that trigger my cravings. Please guide me to people, situations, and experiences that support my desire to live free of addictions. I surrender all my cravings to You, and ask for extra angels to surround me with the light of health and peace. Please help me now and always.
If you or someone you know needs help, you can GET HELP NOW at 1 866-693-4654.