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Category: Substance Abuse Disorder

What Are The Biopsychosocial Effects Of Substance Use Disorder?

Substance use disorder can be regarded as the recurrent usage of opioids and psychoactive drugs of any sort to the point that it leaves a long-lasting biopsychosocial impact on one’s life. Addiction is a rather complex topic, which is why it is necessary to unfold each end of this discourse. As of 2020, around 9.5 million adults struggle with substance use disorder (SUD). Read on to learn more about substance use disorder and how it affects one’s life.

Toll On Psychological & Emotional Wellbeing 

The psychological impact of substance use disorder is often misunderstood and underestimated due to the lack of general discourse on it. Long-term usage of psychoactive drugs can even alter one’s brain chemistry. Opioids, stimulants, and heroin are right at the top of this list. 

The long-term use of the aforementioned items can cause short-term memory loss and affect an individual’s cognition and behavior, or functioning. Furthermore, prolonged and excessive substance use also heightens the probability of having another mental issue. A great example of this would be depression or an extreme case of anxiety. 

The euphoric feeling provided by most of these drugs is often followed by an extreme low that can affect a person’s mental and emotional stability. Those who experience psychosis already or might be on the autism spectrum can suffer greatly due to enhanced sensory perception.

The prevalence of this disorder in the previous generation increases the probability of it in the next generation. People struggling with substance use disorder also tend to experience hallucinations under the influence, which can sometimes lead to increased psychological distress. As if this wasn’t enough, sleep disorders and withdrawal symptoms can also become prevalent due to consistent substance use or attempts to stop. 

Personal Relationship Difficulties

When it comes to an individual’s private life and the quality of their relationships with others, substance use disorder can truly change the game for the worse. Possessing a stable state of mind and emotions ensures that we make the right choices. 

According to a study, 33% of individuals struggling with substance abuse have a history of intimate partner violence (IPV). The violence in question varies; whether it’s physical or psychological, the stats strongly indicate that substance use disorder increases the probability of IPV among couples. 

Even among relationships with no reported cases of abuse, people addicted to recreational drug usage rarely enjoy fulfilling relationships. Substance use can sometimes amplify anger issues and emotional breakdowns, which in turn impacts the course of a person’s relationships. In fact, substance use disorder can practically destroy families, especially if an addict refuses to seek rehabilitation. 

Social Marginalization & More

Unfortunately, even with the awareness available at everyone’s disposal, struggling with addiction of any sort can make society extremely hostile towards you. People struggling with substance use in particular tend to struggle the most. The reason behind this is two-fold: an inability to function properly due to repetitive substance usage, and the general stigma against addicts. 

As we’ve established earlier, long-term substance usage of any sort can alter one’s physical and mental stability. Someone who’s struggling with health problems from the get-go is less than likely to secure employment at a stable workplace. Even if they seem physically fit, the social stigma against addicts can destroy their professional careers if discovered. 

In addition to this, the lack of support can be evident in some cases. One can always count on those that take a less judgemental approach to such matters. Lacking support can also result in homelessness or poverty, which further pushes an individual into choosing continuous substance use to temporarily escape their problems. 

Long-Term Physical Effects

There’s a long list of physical health conditions that can stem from long-term substance use. To begin, substance use disorder makes an individual highly susceptible to experiencing rapid weight change. Heroin in particular can result in rapid weight loss, which in turn can make a person appear highly malnourished. Long-term usage of methamphetamines can cause various skin issues and dental concerns, not to mention the added risk of contracting HIV (AIDS) through infected needles.

Among other health risks resulting from an undealt case of substance abuse disorder are cardiovascular diseases, pneumonia, liver or kidney failure, bronchitis, and a weakened immune system. Lastly, long-term substance use can also increase the probability of having seizures out of the blue, or even strokes. 

Final Words

If you or someone you know is currently struggling with SUD, the emotional support lended by our loved ones can make matters slightly easier to handle. Additionally, if you’re looking into alternative treatment options there’s no better place to begin than with ketamine infusion therapy.

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Ketamine Used to Treat Substance Abuse Disorder

What Is Substance Abuse Disorder?

According to experts at the Mayo Clinic: “Drug addiction, also called substance use disorder, is a disease that affects a person’s brain and behavior and leads to an inability to control the use of a legal or illegal drug or medication. Substances such as alcohol, marijuana, and nicotine also are considered drugs. When you’re addicted, you may continue using the drug despite the harm it causes.”

Many cases of substance abuse disorder can be treated with ketamine therapy.

Know the Symptoms

  • Using or consuming larger quantities or over extended periods than initially planned.
  • Frequently wanting or ineffectively attempting to limit or control the use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Spending considerable time acquiring, using, or recuperating from using drugs or alcohol.
  • Craving or having an intense urge to use alcohol or drugs.
  • Constant drug or alcohol usage restricts work, school, or home responsibilities.
  • You keep using alcohol or drugs even when you’re aware of the relationship issues and harm it causes to others.

What Are the Risk Factors?

Risk factors can increase a person’s chances for drug abuse, while protective factors can reduce the risk.” Several factors, including: influence the chance that someone will fall victim to substance abuse

  • Family history
  • You had parents or parental figures who had favorable attitudes towards such behavior
  • Lack of monitoring by parents or authority figures
  • Parental substance use
  • You associate with others who are substance abusers
  • Absence of strong personal relationships
  • Childhood abuse
  • Existing mental health issues

Indicators to Watch For

If you or someone you know has a substance abuse problem, there are indicators to watch for:

  • Problems at school, work or socializing in general
  • A plethora of physical health issues which are readily apparent
  • Lack of concern over personal appearance and hygiene
  • Noticeable changes in behavior, such as secrecy, unusually high need for personal space and boundaries, or sudden changes in behavior and relationships with family and others
  • Money issues related to acquiring favored drugs, alcohol, or other substances which are regularly abused

Ketamine Used to Treat Substance Abuse Disorder

Ketamine is a medicine-first synthesized as an anesthetic in the 1960s and gained approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for human and animal use in 1970. It was field-tested on wounded U.S. troops in Vietnam. Since that time, people have discovered many of its other medicinal uses, including treating conditions like substance abuse disorder.

The medicine is primarily dispensed in low doses intravenously when treating mental illness and other conditions. According to one study reported in Frontiers in Psychiatry, ketamine has shown promise in these areas: “These results suggest that ketamine may facilitate abstinence across multiple substances of abuse and warrants broader investigation in addiction treatment.”

Substance abuse disorder is often influenced by mental illness, with depression being one of the most common mental illnesses experienced by someone battling substance abuse issues. How does it work? 

Ketamine may work to repair or strengthen faulty neurotransmitters in the brain responsible for perceptions of pain and mood and emotional regulation, so quickly in fact that it’s been cited as a better option than certain antidepressants.

Ketamine blocks the NMDA receptors, which play an essential role in mood stability, and delivers serotonin directly to the brain by hindering the NMDA receptors, effectively lowering depression symptoms quickly, often within a few hours.

Unlike other medicine, fewer doses of ketamine are needed and can last several days or longer. The U.S. National Library of Medicine concluded in one study that “ketamine shows great promise as a treatment for various addictions, but well-controlled research is urgently needed.”

Diagnosis & Treatment

Diagnosing substance abuse is never easy, often because of symptoms that overlap with other conditions. The best person to offer diagnosis and treatment options is a medical or mental health professional specializing in substance abuse. If the abuse is related to a medical condition, the condition may be treatable and thereby reduce substance abuse from happening. A mental health professional may also identify triggers for your illness, such as a personal or family history of mental illness and other risk factors.

Your healthcare provider may prescribe medicine to make substance use less palatable and recommend psychotherapy or ketamine therapy.

Final Thoughts

If you think you’re experiencing substance abuse disorder, talk with a medical or mental health professional for diagnosis and to learn about treatment options. With time and care, you can regain control of your life.


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