Addiction is Our Nation’s Number One Health Problem

AddictionAddiction is one of the more serious health issues in our country today. While many people think of addiction as pertaining solely to substance abuse, addiction can involve any number of activities or things that the user has become dependent on. However, it is substance addiction which poses a major issue to this country, as both recreational and prescription drugs are becoming increasingly popular among both students and adults.

In fact, when looking primarily at high school students, nearly 75 percent have used addictive substances like marijuana, cocaine and alcohol in the past, while just under 50 percent currently use some type of addictive substance. Twelve percent of these users have become fully addicted. While illegal drugs have been the most common form of addictive substances in the past, prescription drugs are being used for drug abuse purposes much more often now than ever before, especially by high school students. The following will provide an in-depth look at why addiction is our nation’s number one health problem.

Dangers of Addiction

While addiction can cause a person to neglect their responsibilities, get into huge financial trouble and ruin any personal relationship they might have had, the largest issue is with the many health problems that can result from it. The reason that addiction is our nation’s number one health problem is primarily due to the fact that there are so many substances to become addicted to. Many teenagers find themselves becoming addicted to prescription drugs that they get from their friends, while adults have access to a wide range of prescription and recreational drugs, as well as alcohol, all of which can lead to addiction and dependence. Once a person becomes addicted to any kind of substance, there are a large amount of health issues that can start to affect their body.

For instance, addiction to prescription drugs can lead to vomiting, nausea, respiratory failure, lack of focus and impaired judgment. Some of the more serious health problems resulting from prescription drug addiction include coma, seizures, heart attack, and stroke. Those that become addicted to sedative drugs may start to experience confusion, involuntary gestures, rapid eye movement, memory loss and even death in rare instances. Stimulant drugs like Cocaine and Adderall can lead to a wide range of health issues within the person addicted to them, such as high blood pressure, irritability, hostility, paranoia and insomnia, as well as seizures in some cases.

Addiction to opiate drugs is also on the rise throughout America, as more than 7 million people within the United States are currently addicted to some form of opiate drug. The health issues caused by these drugs include shortness of breath, constipation, muscle pains, vomiting and diarrhea. The more severe effects of addiction include seizures and cardiac arrest. As for alcohol, addiction can lead to cardiovascular disease, cancer, anemia, high blood pressure, nerve damage and seizures. Overall, nearly 16 percent of the U.S. population that is over the age of 12 are addicted to some type of substance. This equates to just over 40 million people.

Benefits of Seeking Inpatient Treatment

If you or someone close to you is addicted to a substance of any kind, it’s essential that you focus solely on getting the treatment you need to rid yourself of the addiction. There are many types of treatment available for addicts, including inpatient and outpatient treatment. While outpatient treatment allows the patient to attend treatment while still going to work and school on a regular basis, inpatient treatment provides the recovering addict with a complete rehabilitation facility where they will stay for a period of 28 days or more, on a 24/7 basis. This provides the user with a place where they no longer have access to the substance they were addicted to and can progress through detoxification and the remainder of the recovery process without the temptation of falling back to whatever they were addicted to. Inpatient treatment also has the benefit of having recovery professionals on hand at all times to tend to the needs of each patient. If you are currently addicted, seek treatment immediately.