November 13, 2012
Teenage Drug Abuse
There are many illnesses that can take over a child’s life and even cause death. Drug abuse is at the top of that list. Teenage drug abuse is a common problem in today’s society and has increased over the last fifty years but, what most do not realize is that an increase in drug abuse leads to addiction and that addiction leads to an incurable disease.
Many people do not understand how or why anyone could become addicted to drugs, especially teens. Studies have pointed out “having fun” as a teens number one reason for using drugs, but recent studies show that teens are now using drugs to problem solve or to hide ...view middle of the document...
Often the statement “Teens are curious” or “Every teen is going to try some kind of substance” will lead parents to believe that it is okay if they try it one time, but that one time can lead to a life time of mental, physical and social disabilities. Drug abuse will adversely affect every major system in the human body. It will cause physical impairment, loss of motor skills, concentration and perception. More importantly, if a teen is using to escape feelings, chances are they will use again. (Alvarez, 2012)
We all know drug abuse leads to addiction. Addiction is a “chronic relapsing brain disease”, (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2011). The hard part is trying to understand why teens might use, and the addiction itself. The truth in the initial decision to take drugs is voluntary but, overtime because of chemical changes in the brain caused by the abuse of drugs, it can directly affect one’s decision making ability and self control. With the loss of the ability to resist the impulses to use, the addiction sets in. What happens to a brain when drugs are abused? The human brain has a set pattern where nerve cells send, receive, and process information. The chemicals in the drug directly affect this pattern. Due to the similar structures of chemicals found in drugs and the brain, the drugs are able to confuse the brains receptors and send irregular messages. So, if the human brain sends and receives messages the same, why do some become addicted while others do not? It is not black or white as to whether or not a person will become addicted. However, there are risk factors that influence ones risk of becoming addicted. For example, a person’s genetic make-up, the environment in which one grew up in and how genetic and environmental factors interacted with ones developmental stages in life. Teens experience more of a challenge with addiction vulnerability “because their brains are still developing in...