Substance misuse is a disorder that is characterized by a destructive pattern of using substances that cause significant distress or problems (Gordon, 2013).Primarily, substance abuse entails the use of all hazardous psychoactive substances which significantly lead to dependence syndrome.
According to Gilchrist et al. (2012), continued use of these drugs by an individual causes overdependence and a cluster of behavioural,psychological and cognitive phenomenon that include difficulties in the controlling the use of the substances, development of a strong desire to take the drug, persistence in the use despite the inherent harm which is well known to the user. Also, individuals who abuse the substance for a longer time always give a higher priority to the use of the drug other than an activity. Gordon (2013) further opines that most of the individuals especially the youth always tend to become violent or develop physical withdrawal states. The youths are increasingly engaging in the prescription substance abuse, particularly narcotics which are meant to reduce severe pain and stimulant medication that treats attention deficit disorders,
Risk factors are conditions that enhance the chances of one to engage in drugs and substance abuse. Despite the fact that people risk factors differ from an individual to another, a person from any age group, economic status, race or sex can become addicted. However, certain factors can to a larger extent increase the likelihood of members of the society engaging in substance abuse. The risk factors include
There exist a positive correlation between family history and drug use. As noted by Gordon (2013) Substance abuse is always common in some families a condition that is always associated with a genetic disposition. If an individual has a blood relative like a parent with the drug or the problem of alcoholism, the individual is always at a greater risk of developing drug addiction.
A study by Gordon (2013) highlights that age is another factor that can influence an individual to involve himself with drugs. Adolescents are at a greater risk of substance abuse in the society that the general population. This is because the youths at this age are always inclined towards risky behaviours.In most cases, the youths are always tempted to try new things a fact that can plunge them into abusing the drugs.
Stress is another causal factor to the usage of drugs in the society. An individual may turn to alcohol as a way of unwinding. However, if one is not careful, his body may require more frequent usage of these substances to help in relaxing and the relieving of the stress.
An individual who has a mental disorder is at a higher risk of engaging in substance abuse. Health disorder like depression, hyperactivity or post-traumatic stress disorder may make an individual dependent on the drugs a fact that may cause an addiction thus a prolonging the usage of the drugs.
Home based factors like lack of family bonding and parental supervision may expose the children to the risk of involvement in substance abuse. It is imperative for the parents to be involved in the daily activities of their children.Gilchrist et al. (2012) further reiterate that parents should always know the type of friends that their children hung out with. Also, parents should always inquire about the whereabouts of their children.
Peer pressure is a strong factor that can lead one to the use of drugs. Youth is always at a risk of using drugs since they always want to identify themselves with certain groups in the society. An individual may turn to drugs because either don’t want to look the odd one out or does not want to disappoint his friends a fact that can lead to addiction.
Primarily, any material whose intake can lead to a euphoric feeling is likely to be misused. While many individuals are conscious of the misuse of legal drugs such as alcohol and illegal drugs such as cocaine and marijuana, Gordon (2013) notes that less well identified is the issue that inhalants such as domestic cleaners are among the most abused substances.
Although alcohol is a legal drug, it has immense effects on pregnant women on the development of the foetus.Alcoholism may also have devastating effects on the physical health of the user. Marijuana is another drug that is commonly abused among the youths. Despite the health risks, Marijuana may cause withdrawal effects. Cocaine is another substance that is highly abused. Primarily Cocaine stimulates the nervous system and can be smoked or snorted in the powder form.
A study by Gilchrist et al. (2012) indicates that the relationship between the substance abuse and violence seems apparent. Individual, who are under the influence of drugs, may be involved in perpetration violence due to the disinheriting nature of the substances. Alcoholism, for instance, has been linked with domestically mediated violence like verbal abuse, sexual assault physical violence. Also, some individuals may involve themselves in criminal activities like robbery with violence so as to finance their usage of drugs. Besides; increased use of cocaine has been linked to an increase in aggressive behavior among the user. The use of cocaine can specifically make people become irrational, agitated or even become unable to control violent impulses or anger.
Violence by the youth is a common visible global public health issue. As noted by Gordon (2013) it includes all form of violence and non-violent assaults that range from fighting, bullying sexual assault and homicide. Some of the major causes of violence behavior among the youths include uncontrolled access to the drugs and guns, poverty, lack of attention from the parents, unemployment and association with delinquent peers (Gordon, 2013).
Gilchrist, G., Blázquez, A., & Torrens, M. (2012). Exploring the relationship between intimate partner violence, childhood abuse and psychiatric disorders among female drug users in Barcelona. Advances in Dual Diagnosis, 5(2), 46-58. doi:10.1108/17570971211241895
Gordon, A. J. (2013). Substance Abuse Journal: New Beginnings. Substance Abuse, 34(4), 339-341. doi:10.1080/08897077.2013.825220