Stories about the perils of drug addiction often focus on the immediate effects: incarceration, conflict with loved ones, financial problems. But drug addiction is a serious, chronic, and potentially life-threatening disease.
The effects of drug addiction are far-reaching and pernicious, and not all can be reversed—even when you seek treatment.
By pursuing help for drug addiction now, you minimize your risk of incurring some of the worst effects of drug addiction. And of course, prompt help can aid you in reversing some of the most dangerous effects of chronic drug use.
Health Effects of Drug Use
Drugs seep into every pore, tissue, and organ of your body, slowly and steadily altering the way your body functions. That whole-body high you feel today could easily become a chronic health problem tomorrow. Help with drug addiction can help you fend off some of the worst side effects, though. Some of the health effects of drug use include:
- Diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, inflammatory conditions, autoimmune disorders, and cardiovascular problems.
- Organ failure or damage.
- Liver failure, hepatitis, and other liver issues.
- Needing an organ transplant.
- Blindness, blurred vision, or the need for glasses.
- Losing your sensory capacities; your sense of smell, taste, touch, hearing, or sight might suffer
- Persistent ringing sensation in the ears.
- Weak muscles.
- Chronic pain or headaches.
- Decreased immunity.
- The transmission of communicable diseases such as HIV/AIDS
- Sudden, unexplained death.
- Shaking, dizziness, or seizures.
- Accidental overdose.
- Permanent brain damage.
- Changes in your face shape, especially if you use a drug such as a methamphetamine.
- Tooth damage or loss; over time, severe tooth decay can spread to other areas of your body, causing severe and even life-threatening infections.
- Hormone imbalances
- Delays or disruption in the menstrual cycle.
- Difficulty getting or sustaining an erection or arousal.
- Difficulty orgasming.
- Changes infertility.
- Miscarriage, stillbirth, and other pregnancy-related complications.
- Birth defects among babies whose mothers used drugs.
Psychological Effects of Drug Use
Drugs affect your brain perhaps before they affect any other area of your body; indeed, the pleasant brain sensations drugs produce are the reason many users become addicted. By seeking help for drug addiction now, you can minimize the extent to which your use of drugs undermines your mental health. Some of the most common psychological side effects of drug use include:
- Depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses.
- Hallucinations or delusions.
- Loss of intelligence.
- Difficulty focusing, concentrating, or maintaining motivation.
- Hyperactive thoughts or behavior.
- Increased anger, hostility, and aggression.
- Difficulty communicating effectively with others.
- Changes in cognitive abilities.
- Difficulty at work or in school.
- Trouble completing simple, everyday tasks.
- Feelings of hopelessness.
- Thoughts of suicide.
- Inability to bond with your child or partner.
The Social Toll of Drug Use
Drug use doesn’t just affect your life. It also undermines the very fabric of society. A few of the social ills your drug use contributes to include:
- Poppies, which help make heroin and other opioids, are a leading cash crop for terrorist organizations such as Al Qaeda and ISIL/ISIS.
- Organized crime. Drug cartels engage in murders for hire, kidnappings, and a host of other crimes.
- Illegal immigration. The cross-national drug trade contributes to illegal immigration, which may endanger illegal immigrants.
- Gang activity. Violence, theft, and other crimes are part of the everyday life of gangs.
- Medical issues. Doctors who sell their patients drugs or who feed their patients’ drug addiction undermine public trust in medicine.
- A massive economic drain; addiction robs the economy of about $500 billion each year.
Family and Friendship Issues
No matter how hard you try to conceal your addiction, family and friends will notice. And it’s likely that they’ll also suffer. Addiction is an inherently selfish condition, that causes you to behave in ways you’d never dream of if you were sober. The desperate drive for drugs and alcohol can only be quelled with help for drug addiction. If you don’t seek help, some of the consequences include:
- Engaging in acts of violence.
- Saying or doing things you regret to loved ones.
- Abusing your children.
- Turning your children into addicts; your addiction models addictive behavior to your children and children of addicts are significantly more likely to try and become addicted to drugs and alcohol than other children.
- Loss of your most important relationships; many addicts end up divorced.
- Spending all your time with other addicts.
- Traumatizing the people you love the most.
- Stealing from loved ones.
- Losing your family.
Legal, Financial and Other Concerns
If you don’t seek help with drug addiction, your addiction may quickly spiral out of control, overtaking virtually every area of your life. Some of the side effects of an addiction that has spun out of control include:
- Being arrested or incarcerated.
- Being afraid of the police.
- Not being able to call the police when you’re in danger, because there are drugs in your house.
- Being sued for harming another person.
- Loss of your income.
- Spending all of your money on drugs.
- Loss of your job.
- Spending all of your time on drugs, rather than indulging in more meaningful pursuits.
- Dropping off of school.
- Being kicked out of school.
Contact Addiction Rehab Centres Canada today!
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