As time has passed, scientists and researchers have discovered more about what addiction really is and how it affects those who suffer from it. Over the years, there have been many misconceptions about the nature of addiction, but now more than ever, we understand what it truly is. That information is beneficial and important because we now know how best to fight and prevent substance abuse dependencies. When it comes to recovery, knowledge truly is power, and in an effort to make you more powerful in the fight against the dangerous disease, here is some information about the factors that influence addiction.
Factors that Influence Addiction
There are many things that affect addiction. Unfortunately, there is not a universal reason why people begin to use and abuse substances. However, researchers have used years of data to discover patterns and determine which factors play a role in substance abuse habits. Here are some of the most important factors that they have discovered.
- Genetics. Addiction is an inherited disease. If your family has a history of substance abuse disorders, the chances of you suffering from one are increased. When it comes down to it, some people were born to be more prone to addiction than others.
- Social environment. If you grew up in an environment where substance abuse was a common occurrence, the chances of you abusing substances are high. After all, that behavior was “normal” to you during your most impressionable years.
- Age. The earlier you begin abusing substances, the more likely you are to become dependent upon and addicted to them. While your body is still developing, it is most prone to becoming dependent upon substances to function normally, so using substances at a young age makes you very likely to suffer from addiction.
- Mental Illness. People who suffer from mental illness are much more likely to use and abuse substances.
- Trauma. Traumatic events affect everybody in different ways. However, many people who experience a traumatic event begin to use and abuse substances as a coping mechanism. Drugs and alcohol offer them a temporary escape from their problems, but in the end, the person will find themselves addicted.
- Medical Problems. Today, many people become addicted to medications that were originally prescribed to them by a licensed medical professional. For example, America is currently in the midst of an opioid epidemic, largely due to how frequently opioids are used in hospitals.