How Does a Drug Addiction Develop?

By: Lakeview Health Staff
Published: May 9, 2019

Researchers have learned a great deal about addiction over the years. Researchers in the 1930s believed that addicts consisted of morally flawed people who didn’t have the willpower to quit. Fortunately, researchers did not stop analyzing the issue after making that assessment. Eventually, they realized that addiction is a chronic disease that impacts the function and structure of the brain. Now, researchers have a much clearer idea of how drug addiction develops and what is needed to treat it.   Lakeview Health understands the cause and nature of addiction. We know you are not weak minded but instead have been overtaken by a disease that is too powerful to fight on your own. Just as you would need a doctor to treat cardiovascular disease, you need a team of experts to treat drug addiction. Receive drug addiction help by calling 866-704-7692.   Drugs and the Pleasure Principle   To understand addiction, one must first understand the pleasure principle. The human brain is designed to resister pleasurable experiences. When anything pleasurable happens, the brain releases dopamine. This happens when people enjoy a good meal, win the lottery, have fun at a baseball game, or take drugs.   Drugs flood the brain with dopamine, thus creating a shortcut to pleasure. The hippocampus is responsible for forming new memories in the brain, and it quickly links the drug to the feeling of pleasure.   Dopamine also interacts with the brain’s reward circuit to make it think that drugs are needed for survival. Soon, the brain tells the person that it needs to go out and get the drug to survive.   At this point, people are no longer casual users. They have a serious problem and will benefit from drug treatment. The idea of getting drug addiction help might seem overwhelming, but Lakeview Health is staffed with compassionate providers who make the process as stress-free as possible. Call 866-704-7692 to get started on your treatment plan. As people start taking more drugs, the brain begins to adapt to the rush of dopamine. It produces less dopamine and even gets rid of some of the brain’s dopamine receptors. That makes it more challenging to achieve a high. People take more of the drugs to get high, and that often leads to overdoses.   Also, during this stage, people can experience stress and anxiety because their brains no longer provide the same level of pleasure. This is a challenging place to be in, and drug addiction help is necessary to move forward.   You might think that you are in a hopeless situation at this point. Your brain isn’t making dopamine as it should, so it’s normal to think you can never be happy again. That’s not the case, however. Lakeview Health’s team of skilled providers can help your brain make new connections. With our help, you will find a way to be happy once again. Call 866-704-7692 to take the first step in reclaiming your happiness.   This is how addiction works, but why are some people more prone to addictions to others?   Factors That Increase the Risk of Drug Addiction   Some people use drugs occasionally and do not develop an addition, while addiction seems to take hold of others quickly. While it is impossible to predict who will become addicted to drugs accurately, certain risk factors increase the likelihood it will happen. Genes   Researchers have spent years studying mice to determine the impact of genes on addiction, and the evidence is clear. Genes prevent some people from becoming addicts while making it more likely for others to get addicted to a substance.   For example, people who have two copies of the ALDH2 gene are less likely to be alcoholics, while people who do not have the serotonin receptor gene HTR1B are more likely to become addicted to cocaine. These are just two of the numerous examples of the impact genes have on addiction.   You might think you’re in a hopeless situation if your genes play a role in your addiction to drugs, but that is not true at all. You can undergo treatment for drug addiction at Lakeview Health and finally get your life back. Our professional team understands the science behind addiction, and we can teach you how to modify your lifestyle and eliminate drugs. Your genes help shape who you are, but you still have control. Call 866-704-7692 to get help today.   Mental Health Disorders   Some mental health disorders also lead to addiction. Many people take drugs to cope with the symptoms of their condition. For instance, if they suffer from severe depression, they might take a stimulant to perk them up.   Unfortunately, this creates a severe problem. The symptoms of mental illness get worse when people start using drugs. This causes many to use even more of the drugs, which leads to addiction. Lakeview Health is trained to treat people with co-occurring conditions. That means we can treat your drug addiction and your mental health issue. This is the best way to get the desired outcome, so call 866-704-7692 for mental health and drug addiction help today. You will undergo a full assessment and then go through a treatment plan created just for you.   Environment   A person’s environment also plays a role in addiction. Those who live in a stress-free environment are less likely to become addicts, while people who are surrounded by stressors might use drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism.   There are several environmental factors people need to consider concerning addiction. First, there is the family dynamic. Familial interactions, the amount of supervision received, and the parenting methods used can impact the chance of addiction.   People are also impacted by the friends they keep. Those who hang out with addicts are more likely to use drugs and develop an addiction. Many give in to peer pressure, or they have a different view of drugs since they are around them often. They don’t realize how dangerous drugs are, so they use them without fear. Then, they end up with a serious problem on their hands.   People are also influenced by the media, social networks, their culture, and their learning environments, such as work. Each factor makes people less or more likely to become addicted to a substance.   If environmental factors are causing you to reach for drugs, it is time to break free from the cycle. Lakeview Health will teach you how to shape your environment into one that is healthy, welcoming, and less stressful. With our help, you will finally understand how to live a happy and healthy life without drugs. Get drug addiction support by calling 866-704-7692.   Age of First Use   People can become addicted to drugs at any age. However, those who start using drugs at a young age are much more likely to become addicted. Unfortunately, teens are also more prone to trying drugs for the first time. Their brains are still developing, and they are more likely to engage in risky behavior. They think they can try something just once and then never touch it again, but their young brains are often overwhelmed by the release of dopamine. Before they know it, they have a full-blown addiction.   Is Gender a Component in Addiction?   Gender plays an interesting role in drug use. Men are more likely to use drugs than women, and they are also more lily to overdose. However, both men and women are just as likely to develop substance abuse issues, and research has shown that women might be more likely to give in to cravings and relapse.   That’s not all. Men and women use drugs for different reasons, and they also enter treatment for various reasons.   Because drugs affect men and women differently, Lakeview Health uses Gender-Responsive Treatment for all patients. This treatment addresses the gender-specific issues that men and women face, including their triggers and the reason they want into rehab. Call 866-704-7692 to learn more about Gender-Responsive Therapy and how it can help you overcome your addiction. You reach for drugs for a reason, and we will get to the bottom of it and help you eliminate substances from your life. Treatment for Drug Addiction   Drug addiction is a chronic disease, and there is not a cure. However, drug addiction treatment has been proven to help people stop using drugs. Lakeview Health’s rehab center won’t just help you stop using drugs today. Our program will help you learn the coping skills you need to stay no to drugs after you leave the safety of our facility.   If you had diabetes, you would get medical help. Treat your addiction to drugs the same way. Get the help you need, so you can finally live the life you were always meant to lead. Just imagine what you can do when you’re finally free of drugs.   Call Lakeview Health at 866-704-7692 to begin the process. Our intake team is on hand 24 hours a day, seven days a week, waiting for your call.