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The Physical and Emotional Impacts of Drug and Alcohol Addiction

Posted Mar 01 2013 8:45am
Image courtesy of chainat / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of chainat / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you have ever known someone with a drug or alcohol addiction , then you know the physical and emotional toll that it can have on the life of an individual . It can change relationships,impact health on many levels and cause a whole slew of  emotional issues. What are some of the specific problems that can arise though? Read on to find out.

Different substances will have various effects on a person’s appearance. For example, excessive alcohol abuse can dry out a person’s skin, and he or she may look much older than actually is. The usage of heroin can leave terrible marks on a person’s arm, and the build up of smoke from other substances could cause blackened teeth or gums. In general, individuals with these addictions can look tired, wrinkled and so forth. If someone you know has rotting or missing teeth, it might be due to crack or meth use.

Even if you, or the individual who is suffering from drug or alcohol addiction, looks fine on the outside, the inside of the body could be crumbling. Think about the effect that constant abuse of alcohol has on a person’s liver or the effects of smoking on the lungs. People who abuse drugs or alcohol can also have issues with their brain. They might start to hallucinate. Various cancers can eventually form from the addictions too, so often the problems are compounded over time.

Due to an altered state of mind , abusers may suddenly feel that it is okay to hurt other individuals or themselves. This pain could be inflicted in a mental, emotional or physical manner. This is often the only solution to a deep-seated need for attention or help. Whether they want to cause pain or take their own lives, it is so important to pay attention to the mental state of a person who is abusing one of these dangerous substances.

Trying to list every emotional issue associated with drug or alcohol abuse is almost impossible. Every person has a different body chemistry, and individuals react to these sorts of situations in a whole host of ways. General feelings of depression, sadness and anxiety can begin to lurk in the minds of abusers. Furthermore, they might feel worthless and as though they are not capable of accomplishing anything anymore. Abuse is really a sad cycle – feelings of unworthiness lead to abuse, which leads to more feelings of unworthiness. On the other hand, they could go into a state of euphoria. Their altered state of mind might encourage them to engage in risky behaviors. These types of behaviors could involve driving after consuming alcohol or engaging in unsafe sex. From these severe highs to the extreme lows, alcohol and drugs can take the mind and body to bad places, often with no return.


Author Bio
Bradley Bronson writes about addiction, health and education. His recent work highlights  30 Great Blogs for Nurses .

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