How Drug Addiction Becomes a Mental Illness - What You Need to Know

Drug addiction is a complex disease. This disease can be cured with patience and careful treatment. Through the social normalization of drug addiction treatment, many patients can return to a normal life. Let's know about this disease.

How Drug Addiction Becomes a Mental Illness

There is evidence of drug use from the very beginning of human civilization. The existence of psychotropic plants is found in human archaeology, which is about 20 million years old. That is, it is clear that the relationship between people and drugs is about millions of years old.

Drugs are substances that when taken, create various pleasures in the human body. Taking drugs is very much about hacking your body to get a sense of pleasure, the side effects of which are often horrific.

Drug addiction and a drug-related disease “Substance Abuse Disorder” have always been looked down upon in our society. But no one tries to understand that it is a mental disorder. Let's try to understand more precisely why drugs are harmful to the body.

Why are drugs harmful?

Human hunger for pleasure or happiness is very primitive and universal. To be happy, we do almost everything in our activities, livelihood, and relationships. Eating good food makes us happy, talking with our favorite people makes us happy, and traveling makes us happy. But actually, what is the joy! Why and how is happiness?

Happiness or happiness is actually some hormones and biochemicals that are secreted in our brain to make us feel happy. Serotonin, Dopamine, Endorphins, and Oxytocin are among these hormones. Each hormone produces different feelings of pleasure and is secreted through different functions.

For example, if you get good results from doing something, dopamine is released, serotonin regulates your mood, etc. These bio-chemicals are designed in our body in an important way for our survival.

Now come on, if you can take control of those happy hormones in the brain by using drugs, you will have great pleasure without suffering. Not only are hormones secreted, but different drugs disrupt the brain's natural signaling in different ways, giving people a glimpse of another world, where the drug addict is at the pinnacle of euphoria.

But what is bad about drugs?

But what is bad about drugs

Being happy is not bad. The problem is that our body's hormones are reserved for specific tasks. A regular release of dopamine on a normal day can keep you motivated throughout the day. But if under the influence of drugs, the hormone is depleted for temporary happiness, you will only have sad times, you will not be able to do anything, and you will feel restless. You may want some more medicine. But even if you increase the amount of drugs day by day, the feeling of happiness will continue to disappear from life. Manipulating the human body in any form has dire consequences.

Our brain always wants to get those happy hormones. If we don't know, we do those things so that those hormones are released in the brain. Taking drugs easily releases large amounts of happy hormones. Our brain doesn't want to understand how we got the pleasure, it just knows it wants that same hormonal rush again. It is precisely this condition that creates drug addiction.

What does drug addiction mean?

Taking drugs is not just drug addiction. When drug consumption turns into addiction and creates depression, discomfort, restlessness and various physical and mental problems without drugs, that condition is called drug addiction. Although not everyone becomes addicted, a large number of people are at risk of becoming addicted to drugs as soon as they take them. Drugs are especially dangerous for people with low mental strength.

Substance abuse disorders and drug addiction

Although substance abuse disorder and drug addiction are used interchangeably, they have some subtle differences.

  • The term drug addiction refers to addiction to any drug.
  • Substance abuse disorder, on the other hand, basically refers to the entire disease, including physical and mental problems caused by addiction. Substance abuse disorder can be effectively cured if treated in the early stages.

What products are called drugs?

There is no jury for human creativity in drug use. There is a trend of taking various medicines, herbs, inhalants etc. as drugs. According to the International Narcotics Organization, narcotics can be divided into the following categories:

  • Alcohol in water
  • Caffeine
  • Marijuana products
  • Hallucinogens (eg LSD)
  • Inhalants (those taken by breathing)
  • Opium products
  • Sedatives (sleeping pills)
  • Hypnotics or hypnotics
  • Anti-anxiety medication

Stimulants Amphetamines such as cocaine and various tobacco products.

Note that although caffeine is addictive, it is not classified as a substance abuse disorder because it is not harmful.

Drug addiction treatment

Drug addiction treatment

Each type of drug has a different effect and also has a different form of addiction. Not only that, each drug can have different effects on different people and can also change the pattern of addiction. So imagine how complicated drug addiction treatment can be!

But there is no reason to fear. With proper treatment, with the support of family and friends, an addict can fully recover and lead a normal life.

However, drug addiction treatment is very time-consuming and addicts are at risk of relapse within months to years of treatment. So in this matter, the treated drug addict and his family should be careful.

Some drugs such as alcohol and nicotine have effective treatments. However, most drugs try to treat the symptoms of the affected person.

The most important step in the treatment of a drug addict is psychological treatment. A psychiatrist can motivate a drug addict to abstain from drugs just by talking.

Moreover, rehab centers are currently operating in different parts of the country. In rehab centers, addicts are kept away from drugs and tried to recover through various psychotherapies.

However, it must be remembered that drug addiction treatment can be very long-term, so there is no alternative to continuing the treatment with patience and care.

Which doctor to see a drug addict?

A drug addict needs a lot of money to consume drugs. Also, his family members are the first to understand the problem of the change in inconsistent behavior. But for social reasons, most of the time the matter is kept secret, and various ways are tried to solve the problem.

But if treatment is done in the early stages, the chances of recovering easily from drug addiction increase. A psychologist or psychiatrist can properly treat drug addiction. Neurologists and medical doctors are also effective in this regard.

Last word

When navigating the complex terrain of how drug addiction becomes a mental illness, it is clear that a multifaceted understanding is essential. From recognizing early symptoms to tackling social stigma, this journey demands collective effort and empathy. By increasing education, awareness and compassion, we can break the cycle of addiction and mental illness, empowering individuals to embark on a path to recovery.

The availability of drugs is enough to destroy a society, and our country is at great risk in that respect. People's curiosity knows no bounds, so raising awareness about the evils of drugs can be the solution to this problem. Let's empathize with the drug addict, not the drug addict and hate the drug.

As we navigate the complexities of these issues, it's important to remember that recovery is possible with the right support and intervention. By increasing understanding, promoting awareness, and advocating for effective policy, we contribute to a society where individuals facing these challenges can lead fulfilling and healthy lives.


How does drug addiction impact mental health?

Drug addiction can have a profound impact on mental health by altering neurotransmitter levels, affecting brain structure, and exacerbating pre-existing mental health conditions. The interplay between substance abuse and mental health is complex, requiring a comprehensive understanding of effective intervention.

Is there a genetic predisposition to drug addiction?

Yes, some individuals have a genetic predisposition to addiction. Understanding the Genetic Predisposition to Addiction is crucial in identifying those at higher risk and tailoring intervention strategies accordingly.

Can drug addiction cause permanent mental health damage?

Yes, prolonged drug addiction can lead to lasting changes in mental health, emphasizing the importance of early intervention and treatment.

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