Written by Valiant Living Recovery on Monday, June 10th, 2019
Addiction does not discriminate. It can happen to anyone from any background, social status, race, and gender. When you are addicted, it can be difficult to understand why you developed an addiction in the first place. Some people are at a higher risk of developing an addiction than others are. There are factors that contribute to a person developing an addiction. Genetics, family history, mental health, and the environment are some of the reasons why some people are more susceptible to addiction.
Addiction has an inherited component, often runs in families, and can be passed down through generations. An article on genes and addictions by L. Bevilacqua and D. Goldman for the Laboratory of Neurogenetics, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, NIH explains, “Addictions are moderate to highly heritable. Family, adoption, and twin studies reveal that an individual’s risk tends to be proportional to the degree of genetic relationship to an addicted relative.”
Environmental factors can contribute to a person’s substance abuse. Young adolescents who lack parental involvement or live in an abusive home might turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with their emotions. Teens are faced with peer pressure and can easily be influenced to experiment with drugs or alcohol to feel accepted.
Metabolism is another reason why some people develop an addiction. Each person absorbs and processes compounds differently and can determine the effect a drug will have on the body. (Medical News Today (2018).
Mental health conditions such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety can increase the risk of developing an addiction or substance use disorder. Some individuals use drugs or alcohol as a way to cope, but certain substances increase depression and anxiety.
Alcohol is a depressant and increases symptoms of depression. Opioids are often prescribed after an illness, injury, or surgery to temporarily manage pain and recovery. Painkillers are addictive but safe when taken as prescribed. A person without any of the risk factors can also become addicted at any time.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, you are not alone. Addiction is complicated but is treatable. Take the first step toward a healthy, fulfilling, life in sobriety and get help today. There is hope in recovery. Do not let the stigma prevent you from getting the help you need. Asking for help is the first step to a healthy, meaningful, and fulfilling life.
Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Valiant Living offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. Through evidence-based therapy options and the endless adventure of Colorado, Valiant fosters connection, encouraging clients to get connected to themselves, their peers, their families, and their higher power. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing. Call us today for more information: 303-536-5463