Drug addiction is a serious condition. It can have serious detrimental effects, that, beyond affecting your personal health, can cascade into your family life, bring you into legal troubles, and more. Today, we’re going to provide a short overview of the many ways in which drug addiction can impact your life, and what resources you can turn to when looking for help.
Perhaps one of the most obvious ways in which drug addiction can affect your life is by disrupting your physical health. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the physical effects of drug addiction can be far-reaching and quite severe:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Hepatitis B and C
- Lung Disease
- Mental disorders
Because drug addiction often involves the use of injections, it’s possible to contract diseases like HIV and Hepatitis. What’s more, some drugs might result in risk-taking behaviors—such as unprotected sex—which can also be a pathway to diseases. Over time, drug use may trigger (or worsen) mental health conditions, which can then start to spiral out of control. Additionally, the use of certain drugs can start to take their toll on certain systems in the body.
Prolonged tobacco use, for instance, exposes you to chemicals that increase the likelihood of many cancers. Methamphetamines, meanwhile, can wreak havoc on the mouth and result in severe dental issues. Highly-addictive opioids can bring a risk of overdose (and perhaps death), and there are also drugs that can damage your nervous system and brain itself.
If your drug use is paired with drug dealing, then this can also lead to troubles with the law. Drug distribution charges in Boulder, for instance, can come with felony charges that could result in lengthy prison sentences. Drug use could also lead you to committing other crimes, such as driving under the influence (DUI). On its own, a DUI can result in fines or jail time, and if that DUI leads to the death of another, the penalties could be even more severe.
Then there are all the ways in which drugs can destroy your interpersonal relationships. According to researchers, addictions “affect families and children in every area of their development,” and accounting for the interactions between the friends and families of addicts is critical in developing ongoing treatment methodologies. In other words, the effects if drugs on the family unit is massive, and might include:
- Direct impacts on children: One in five children grow up with a parent who has an addiction. These children are often at risk of disrupted development, especially when the addicted parent is the only caregiver.
- Loss of trust between addicts and family members: Addicts often strain their relationships by abusing the trust of the other party.
- Increased stress for all family members: By not handling their responsibilities, addicts can place additional burden on other family members.
- Financial difficulties: Drug addiction often drains finances.
- Physical and emotional abuse: Addicts may act out violently, both through physical and verbal means.
- Fear for safety: Family members facing threats from an addicted relative could, in turn, fear that they will be harmed.
So, in summation, addiction is a life-altering disease, and if you or a family member is dealing with addiction, you should turn to resources that can help you take the first steps to getting the problem under control.