Drug use and drug addictions are very common amongst Australians, where the most common addictions are cigarettes and alcohol. Illicit drugs such as marijuana and heroin are far less commonly used.
There are many different reasons why a person develop a drug addiction. Some people take drugs to dull physical or psychological pain, but it’s important to remember that this doesn’t make the root cause go away. In the long run, a drug addiction only makes the pain worse.
The signs or symptoms of a drug addiction include:
- Using drugs to cope emotionally
- Neglecting work and social responsibilities
- Increased conflicts with family, friends or colleagues
- Engaging in risky behaviours (e.g. unsafe sex, drink driving or sharing needles)
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Inability to stop taking drugs
The health side-effects to a drug addiction vary widely according to the drug in question. The most commonly found health effects are:
- Brain damage
- Liver failure
- Heart disease
- Memory loss
- Increased aggression and violence
- Increased physical accidents
Substance abuse can lead to a wide range of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and psychosis. Psychological treatments can help to break you out of the addiction.