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woman with head in hands dealing with dangers of substance abuse

Dangers of Substance Abuse

The physical dangers of substance abuse are well-known. There are other dangers of substance abuse that can be just as devastating to the person abusing and their family. In many cases, it is non-physical dangers that end up causing an even greater danger in the end. The dangers, in addition to physical ones, are financial, social, and psychological. Let’s take a look at these.

Financial Dangers of Substance Abuse

It can be obvious that the money you spend on drugs or alcohol is money that could better be used for other things. If you are not independently wealthy, this financial danger becomes obvious quickly. First, there is the danger of not having money to pay the necessary bills such as rent and utilities. You may end up facing homelessness. Especially if you experience another of the financial dangers of substance abuse — loss of employment. As substance abuse worsens, it becomes much harder to hold onto a regular job.

What are the Social Dangers You Face?

As your substance abuse progresses, you begin to notice that you no longer have the same friends and relationships with family members become strained, and even severed. Your personality may have changed so that you are no longer recognized as the person you once were. You avoid places and people that don’t allow you to indulge in your substance of choice. You aren’t invited to gatherings, and others may avoid your calls. There is also the legal danger involved. Whether it is driving under the influence or a result of behavior that has enabled you to continue abusing drugs, legal troubles are very real and can take years to bounce back from.

Psychological Dangers of Substance Abuse

Psychological dangers of substance abuse may be among the worst. Often mental health issues and substance abuse form a vicious circle. The two become almost inseparable due to several factors:

  • The same genetic factors contributing to a predisposition toward addiction also predispose a person to mental illness. This accounts for the high number of people who have dual diagnoses.
  • Often a person will turn to drugs or alcohol to self-medicate when they experience symptoms of mental illness. This makes it difficult to find and treat the underlying problem. When the mental illness goes untreated, it worsens, creating a situation where it becomes increasingly more difficult to deal with life in general.
  • In some cases, substance abuse will trigger a mental illness when there is a predisposition for one that has not yet manifested. Depression and anxiety are two of the most popular, followed closely by psychosis. In these cases, it is not clear whether substance abuse actually causes mental illness or brings it to the forefront
  • PTSD can result from events that occurred as a result of substance abuse. Those with substance abuse problems face homelessness, violence, and other traumatic events at a higher rate than those without such problems. They find themselves in situations they may not otherwise be in, and they often do things that they would not do, such as steal or have unsafe sexual encounters if they were clean and sober.

Five Palms

Both substance abuse and mental health problems can tear families apart. The dangers of substance abuse can be reversed if proper intervention and a commitment to getting help are made. Contact Five Palms today 1.844.675.1022 to find out how we can help. The path to renewal and a positive future is only a phone call away.

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