Substance abuse counselors are extremely keen on spotting the signs and symptoms of current or impending substance abuse. The effects of substance abuse are easily spotted once the counselor is aware of what he or she is looking for. These effects of substance abuse can be temporary or permanent, individual or familial and social, mildly annoying or extremely anxiety producing. The effects from substance abuse can worsen depending on the frequency and duration of use. The effects can be a one-time ordeal or a fatal overdose. Let us explore further the detrimental effects of substance abuse.
The Effects of Substance Abuse in Depth at a Glance
Substance abuse can lead to many troubling problems. Rather than explore each in depth, let us just reel off a list. Notice how disturbingly long this list is and how much longer it could be. The effects of substance abuse include but are not limited to addiction, withdrawal, health and social problems, marriage issues, domestic violence, explosive behavior, poor impulse control, anxiety, depression, minor and major injuries, sexual acting out behavior, superficial and fatal self-harm, motor accidents, theft and burglaries, assaults, physical dependence, psychological addiction, psychiatric disorders, etc. These are largely effects upon the individual abuser, but also consider the effects felt by family, friends, significant others, the religious community, and even pets.
The Effects of Substance Abuse in Teens
Adolescents experiment with substances for all types of reasoning. They often seek an escape from the anxieties of growing up, of being social in high school, and of the drudgery of repetitive every-day life. They also hope to gain acceptance by acting wild to impress friends, or to fit in with friends who are already using. The effects of substance abuse in teens and their lives are horrid subjectively for the teens and families. Their lives become far more hostile, unmanageable, and their already not-so-good decision making skills decrease significantly. They end up setting bad examples for younger siblings, physically harming their pets when acting out behaviorally in anger, causing property damage, and running away or leaving without permission. Lies and deceit become the norm. Oftentimes they will end up in a specialty boarding school or residential treatment center for behavioral modification purposes, and this is where the substance abuse counselor will most often find contact with the troubled teen. The direct and indirect impact of substance abuse upon teens and their families are substantial. For example, consider the financial effects on the family, with their child stealing money from them or the cost of fixing damages to the home and property, or of sending a child to a residential treatment facility. This is an indirect effect, but think of the direct effect on emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual health.
Effects of Substance Abuse in Other Situations
Childhood developmental issues are directly correlated with maternal substance abuse. Prenatal exposure to certain substances can cause mental retardation, behavioral problems, neurological issues, and more. This will have lasting effects in academic and professional performance. In addition to fetal exposure, the family unit suffers as a whole long after the birth. There are a correlation between substance abuse and poor parenting and social skills. This leads to the mistreatment of children leading to physical, medical, emotional, and spiritual neglect for the child. These children historically are subject to extreme levels of aggression, sensation-seeking, impulsivity, delinquency, and negative affectivity. If this continues to adulthood, relationships of all kinds continue to suffer, including romantic, parental, familial, and social relations. 30% to 40% of partner domestic violence reports happen while ingesting or experiencing the effects of having ingested a substance. The effects of substance abuse are massive and quickly out of hand. When awareness decreases, taking advantage, being taken advantage, and making poor decisions increases drastically.