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Drug and alcohol addiction are the burning issues in the world today. These habits may cause serious health issues, aggression, financial problems, and chronic diseases. Drug and alcohol addiction cause issues in one’s day-to-day life responsibilities. Often, addicts cannot recognize their abnormal behaviors. As a result, their actions create problems in the society. Moreover, in the U.S. some communities may suffer from poverty and unemployment for a long time. Therefore, this group of people uses illegal drugs to control their stress and depression. However, these addicts face direct and indirect financial issues when they use drugs for a certain period of time. They may need to spend a lot of money to buy illegal drugs. Also, these habits may initiate violent behavior and severe health problems. The following paper analyzes the sociocultural issues of drug addiction and substance abuse. Also, it illustrates the dynamics of addiction.
Sociocultural Determinants of Substance Abuse
Drug addiction and substance abuse have various affects in the United States. These habits rapidly increase the number of premature deaths, violence, and vandalism in different American communities. Studies show that in the United States more than 7 million people use illegal drugs every day (Dayton, n.d.). Recently, the American federal government legalized the light drug in some U.S. states. This new legislation helps the government increase yearly revenue. However, the new laws create severe problems in different communities. Currently, the American young generation has easy access to the lights drugs, such as marijuana. Usually, the teenagers cannot understand the drawbacks of these drugs. Therefore, they consume them for pleasure, and such practices are increasing day by day. Initially, these people use drugs for amusement (“Drug Facts: Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction,” n.d. ). However, it becomes a habit in a short time, and they waste a large amount of money on their addiction. According to research, the overall cost of addiction is more than $485 billion per year in the United States (Dayton, n.d.). This amount includes the medical expenses, crimes, violence, and accidents that occur due to addiction.
Moreover, drug addiction causes direct and indirect financial costs. Initially addicts spend their money to consume drugs. However, later it becomes a habit, and they lose their various resources. Also, substance abuse and drug addiction increase domestic violence. These habits create issues in the interpersonal relationships. For instance, the addicts’ family may leave them due to their bad habits. These situations may make them mentally weak and anxious. Some addicts start demonstrating violent behavior, they involve in homicide, street fight, and robbery to earn money. On the other hand, drug addiction causes indirect financial issues. Studies show that addictive drugs contain certain chemicals that destroy human organs (“Damaged Organs in Drug and Alcohol Abuse,” n.d.). These drugs affect mental health, and they cause psychological and physical problems. Addicts require medical support to get relief from physical and mental problems. Medical experts apply complex therapies, medication, and psychological treatment to heal these patients. Often, patients need to stay in drug rehabilitation centers for a long time. These medical procedures and treatments cost a large amount of money (Dayton, n.d.).
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Medical experts reported that addicts may commit suicide in severe stages (“Suicide: Risk and Protective Factors,” n.d.). In some situations, addiction affects the patients’ thoughts, behaviors, and personal life. The patients may feel sad, helpless, and disappointed from consuming drugs for a long time. They may face challenges in controlling their emotions. In the end, the addicts may choose self-destruction or commit suicide to get relief from the stressful life. Besides, the U.S. Law Enforcement departments claim that drug addiction increases systematic violence, homicide, accidents, and organized crimes (Welch, 2001). They informed that the Mexican drug cartels created secret drug smuggling networks and hubs in the United States. Moreover, the addicts increase the demand for these illegal businesses. As a result, drug dealers fight with each other, and they harm common people (Dayton, n.d.).
Dynamics of Addiction
The dynamics of addiction explain the addicts’ psychological conditions and behaviors. The medical experts describe these mental states with various stages (“Suicide: Risk and Protective Factors,” 2015). They define that addicts often consider their habits normal. Therefore, the patients create psychological protection against their pain. They consider that alcohol or drug consuming behavior will not create problems in their future life. Some of the key components of addiction are the defense mechanism, denial, fantasy, projection, regression, and repression (Dayton, n.d.).
The defense mechanism allows an addict to continue his addictive habits. It filters the patient’s negative thoughts. Therefore, he or she may think that addiction is not harmful. On the contrary, it reduces his or her pain and trauma. Also, it reduces a person’s work and day to day life responsibilities. It makes the addict’s life easier and virtual. Hence, he or she can avoid his or her duties and obligations (Dayton, n.d.).
Denial is a state when the addicts refuse to face the reality. In some situations, people may avoid or refuse to believe real the life fact that they are incapable of doing something. Hence, they start to consume drugs or alcohol to forget their real life issues. In the end, they become dependent and only suffer from addiction (Dayton, n.d.).
Drug addiction and substance abuse create different fantasies, such as excitement, temptation, and anticipation. Addiction diverts a person’s mind from his or her regular life. It helps people escape from their problems. Also, these fantasies help addicts create a mental state in which they can do anything after consuming a specific drug or alcohol (Dayton, n.d.).
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Projection is a state of delusion. In this stage, a person may think that someone else is responsible for his or her problems. As a result, a person can initiate aggression and violence. Often, addicts think that they are correct. Therefore, they try to justify their decision by screaming or fighting (Dayton, n.d.). Thus, projection may create psychological issues for the addict.
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