What’s drug addiction?
Drug addiction can be described as having a constant craving for a particular drug, not being able to control the use of the drug, because leaving the drug causes physical and psychological, so-called withdrawal symptoms. Because of the latter, the person cannot stop using the drug. It is also a form of compulsive use, as it is also characteristic that the addict continues to use the drug with the knowledge that it causes serious harm to his health.
Incidence of drug addiction
There are only estimates of the number of drug users in Hungary, according to which 4-5 thousand are regular, problematic, injecting drug users at national level. In addition, the number of illegal consumers is hundreds of thousands on weekends.
Cannabis (marijuana) is also the leading drug in Hungary, followed by amphetamine derivatives, designer drugs, ecstasy, ketamine, GHB, cocaine, and even smoking. The problem is that the 20-25 year-old age group is the most concerned. It is also known that two-thirds of addicts are male and one-third are female, although women are increasingly “emerging”.
Causes of drug addiction
Addiction, that is, drug disease, is primarily an emotional problem, associated with severe disturbances in emotional life. One of the fundamental factors in the development of family pathology is the trauma of the mother – child and the child in the infant and in the child-child relationship net. Dysfunctional families are the main risk factors for later drug use (this is why children in the institution are more at risk, the broken, fatherless families).
Another main reason is when personality defects and conflicts coincide with the availability of drugs and a crisis situation (for example, a divorce for a puberty child). In such families, there are experiences of loss and loss that make drug addiction easier to develop.
In addition to psychological and environmental factors, it is now known that drug addicts can also be detected as a genetic vulnerability. In such people, the functioning of so-called brain reward systems is deficient, i.e. they cannot experience enough joy, they cannot enjoy the “taste of life”enough. In these people, drug use can be seen as an unsuccessful attempt at self-healing. Drug use can be used not only to pleasure, but also to avoid pain.
Symptoms of drug addiction
A characteristic symptom is constant cravings, an addictive search that typically transforms the whole personality into addicts. Also typical symptoms include changes in behaviour, lying, separation from the family, neglected appearance, specific clothing, piercings and tattoos, followed by physical deterioration, dilation or narrowing of the pupils, retreating or aggressive, impulsive, paranoid manifestations. It can also be a warning sign to sell different items, to steal money. The deterioration of the process is also indicated by police and criminal cases.
Diagnosis of drug addiction
The addict has no diagnosis, no seek help, no motivation for treatment. He usually shows up at the outpatient treatment centre or hospital ward under pressure from the environment. Therefore, the diagnosis is made by the environment, and the professional justifies it.
Diagnosis can always be made by meeting with a specialist – not only a doctor, but also, for example, an addiction counselor – or by drug tests. However, it makes sense to start treatment only if the patient can be motivated. Except when he’s in a state of emergency.
Treatment of drug addiction
The motto of drug treatment is that there is nothing instead of drugs, there is something instead of drugs. So if they find “something” during the treatment, there’s hope for recovery. However, it is a fact that it is not possible to heal from addiction, but abstinence and a significant reduction in drug use can be achieved. This is a lengthy process, the first step may be to highlight the environment, to diversify the hospital. However, if this is not followed by special rehabilitation – with a half-a – year period-the decline is almost 100%.
The problem is, moreover, very precise, ‘the doctor is treating, the community is curing’, as the treatment of drug disease requires both somato-psycho-social and spiritual treatment. So the role of the civil sphere, the church, the self-healing communities is extremely important, whether it is not possible to talk about a lasting recovery without a family background, therefore the involvement of the family is essential.
Chances of recovery of drug addiction
The rate of recoveries is good even if half of the patients have sustained abstinence, i.e. years of abstinence.
Prevention of drug addiction
Drug phenomenon is a symptom of the disease of consumer societies, it is the responsibility of society that drug addiction is a public disease. Prevention is therefore difficult because it would also require a transformation of society. Unfortunately, in today’s society, aggression, depression, the uncertainty of the future, unpredictability, vulnerability, aimlessness are the main characteristics, so it is unable to eliminate the drug phenomenon and therefore it is essential to prevention. However, there are no effective programs, treatment centres for adolescents, and financial resources for this are dwindling.
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders
The most at risk are the so – called problem users, i.e. injecting users and the so – called hard drugs-heroin and cocaine users. They have a very common hepatitis C virus infection and a high risk of HIV infection.
Among drug addicts, suicide rates are also high, and psychotic disorders, depression and anxiety disorders are common. This is so true that even the least harmful cannabis users may develop psychotic, schizophrenic-like mental disorders, severe memory problems , such as not being able to learn, and their immune systems are weakened.
Recently, very widespread so-called designer drugs are very dangerous because they quickly cause addiction and severe psychological disturbances. They’re not known for their chemical composition, so to speak, they’re dumped at home in garages, and they’re almost untested in the streets. Therefore, their effects cannot be predicted.