America is a nation that is loaded with freedom, opportunity, and second chances. This land is considered the wealthiest country on the planet and it is one of the greatest places to live. However, there are two specific ongoing epidemics within America. One has to do with the mental health crises and the other is all about drug addiction. Both of these issues are major concerns for millions of people around the country.
Many mental health and medical professionals are aware of the connections between mental health disorders and drug addiction. A lot of people, in general, can also figure out that these two negative health conditions are somehow linked together. Fact is that drug addicts tend to behave in some rather strange or illogical ways when they are high on drugs. Also, plenty of people with mental health disorders have a tendency to behave even more bizarre after doing drugs and alcohol.
The information presented here will tackle the issue does addiction cause mental health disorder. This material will also address the issue does mental health disorder cause addiction. These are some important questions that must be of concern for the average citizen. The truth is that American society is now loaded with many individuals who have these problems. Knowing how to deal with them is critical to maintain order and safety and to prevent loss of life.
1. Basic Information about the Mental Health and Drug Addiction Crises in America
The National Alliance on Mental Illness states that the current mental health crises began sometime around 2011. While the crises were starting to present itself in 2011, it was about 2005 when this situation was creeping slowly in society. Educators in the nation’s school system were noticing more kids were displaying troubling behavior.
The prison system which houses many mentally ill inmates were also seeing an increase with the admittance of mentally ill prisoners. More importantly, many psychologists and psychiatrists were noticing a steady rise in the number of patients they were receiving. It seemed that more people were being treated for some type of mental health-related issue.
There are two major factors which lead to the current drug crises that America is experiencing in modern times. First, pharmaceutical companies started to push opioid-based treatment options for chronic pain which has become a huge problem as well. Secondly, the legalization of marijuana and the change in attitudes toward drugs, in general, has also contributed to the rise in addiction. The opioid crises began in 2001 but it became a full-scale epidemic between 2011 and 2014. According to the Pharmaceutical Journal, the opioid crises began a huge problem by the year 2017 when the nation declared it be a major issue impacting millions of lives.
2. What are drugs and what generally causes a mental health disorder?
What is a drug? How is a narcotic substance defined? Simply put, drugs are substances that cause a physiological change in the body when they are put into a person’s system. A drug can be inhaled, consumed (swallowed), smoked, injected, absorbed (through a patch) or dissolved within a person’s mouth. This is a broad but accurate meaning of what a drug is. Wikipedia validates this definition. The site also states that drugs are not food sources that provide nutrition though some foods might cause people to experience a psychological change. Sources of drugs include pills (various types), marijuana, various forms of cocaine (crack, powder, est.), opioids, aerosols (inhaled) and alcohol (beer, wine, hard liquor) all fall into the category of a drug.
WebMD is an online journal or information site that provides research supported and fact-based health information. This site explains that there is no exact cause that leads to mental health disorders. However, the medical professionals at WebMD state that research validates factors such as biological development, psychological trauma, and environmental conditions all contribute to the formation of a mental health issue. Generally speaking, situations such as poverty, violence, abuse (different forms), cultural dynamics and traumatic situations can cause a person to develop a mental health disorder. Also added to this mix is prolonged use of drugs.
3. How Drugs Impact the Mind and Change Behavior
The US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health delves deep into the quandary of drugs and they impact a person’s mental health. This institute provides insightful information about how drugs change a person’s mind on the physiological level and how it works out into a person’s actions. People who do drugs can have mood swings, become bolder in their actions or even more creative. They can also become more aggressive and violent. Some people even become extremely comical or exuberant after doing drugs. Truthfully, many people drink alcohol and smoke weed socially to “loosen up” and to become lively. Oftentimes people do drugs to relieve stress, anxiety, and depression. The point is that drugs can change a person’s behavior in many different ways.
4. Do people with mental health disorders do drugs?
Yes, there are people with mental health disorders that do drugs. It has been noted by the National Alliance of Mental Health Illness that at least 10.2 million adults with drug addiction, has a mental health issue. That is nearly 50% of all adult drug users within the U.S. The point is that a lot of people experiencing mental health troubles are doing drugs. Once again, people suffering from mental health issues often find relief by doing drugs.
5. So, does addiction cause mental health disorder?
The answer to this question is maybe. For some people who continuously abuse drugs, it will eventually impact them and change their behavior. This behavioral change will more than likely be categorized as a mental health addiction. Still, you should keep in mind that not everyone doing drugs ends up with a mental health ailment. Strange as this might sound, some people have been doing drugs for years and they have not shown any bizarre or off changes to their behavior.
Have you ever heard of a functioning addict? They are the type of people that can work by day and do drugs by night; and not have any lasting negative consequences show up in their life. The point is that people who always do drugs will not necessarily be strung out on them. Still, this is the exception and not the rule. Most people who are addicted to drugs will have problems and mental health issues are usually a part of their trouble.
6. Well, does mental health disorder cause addiction?
This question can also be answered with a maybe as well. Just because a person with a mental health disorder does drugs, it does not mean they will become addicts. A lot of people with mental health issues do drugs and they are not addicted to the substance they are using. Their behavior might indicate that they should not be doing drugs. Still, it is highly advisable for people with mental health problems not to do drugs because their risk of being addicted is extremely high.
Remember, many people do drugs to find relief from their problems. Most people who suffer from mental health maladies are aware that something is wrong with them and they want to find relief. If they do drugs and like how it makes them feel, chances are they will continuously use this substance to tackle their personal issues. Ultimately, there is no easy answer to the ongoing crises of mental health and drug addiction. The best thing that addicts and people with mental health issues can do, is to reduce their drug use and not rely on them to get through life.