Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Drug and alcohol abuse are serious problems that can have a negative impact on every aspect of your life. Drug and alcohol abuse is generally the precursor to addiction, but not always.
Drug and Alcohol Abuse is Situational
Drug and alcohol abuse typically occurs in response to life situations and may only be temporary, but generally needs to be interrupted before it leads to addiction. Life situations that can trigger drug and alcohol abuse include loss of a loved one, job loss, poor health, divorce, major move, exposure to trauma or abuse whether physical, mental or emotional. Any of these experiences or a combination thereof can result in a person increasing the use of drugs or alcohol to cope, relieve stress or escape.
Drug and Alcohol Abuse can lead to Addiction
Many of the events surrounding drug and alcohol addiction can be so traumatic that an individual uses drugs and alcohol to “check out” of life. In this event, the drug and alcohol use needs to be interrupted before it spirals into addiction. Generally family members, loved ones and friends will notice and encourage the person to get help. A good counselor or therapist can help someone address the underlying reasons for turning to drugs and alcohol. Support groups and journaling may be suggested to help move through overwhelming emotions the person is using drugs and alcohol to suppress.
Drug and alcohol abuse doesn’t always lead to addiction but for people who have family history or display addictive tendencies it can be a dangerous place. Drugs and alcohol are a temporary fix and just indicate that there are more serious problems that need to be dealt with.
If you or a loved one is struggling with drugs or alcohol because of life situations you don’t know how to handle, seek professional help. Most drug rehabs offer therapy and counseling. While you may not be ready for inpatient drug rehab, there are outpatient programs that work around your schedule and can help you arrest the problem before it gets any worse. Don’t wait until drug and alcohol abuse turns into addiction.