25 Reasons Why People Use & Abuse Drugs

A woman and mother of 2 wakes up every day and begins her morning routine. She takes her women’s multivitamin and proceeds to gives her youngest child their ADHD medication. Next, she gives her other child their bubblegum flavored antibiotics for an ear infection. Drugs are a part of our daily lives, and there are numerous different reasons why people use drugs. Why people use drugs can be summed up into three categories: physical, psychological, and social.

Physical Reasons for Drug Use

A typical physical reason for drug use is to manage physical pain. Depending on the severity, there is a wide array of medications that can alleviate pain. Ibuprofen and Tylenol are over the counter medications used to treat minor aches and pains. These medications have a low risk of abuse. However, drugs such as morphine and fentanyl may be prescribed by a physician to treat severe pain. Although patients may begin taking these medications to ease physical symptoms, they also carry a risk of dependence and withdrawal. If a dependency develops, then they may continue to use the substance to avoid the onset of physical withdrawal symptoms. 

Another example of a physical condition that may warrant drug use is seizures. Nerve blockers, sedatives, and anticonvulsants are the groups of drugs that treat seizures. These drugs, especially with sedative effects, also carry a risk of abuse and addiction. 

Drugging For Psychological Reasons

Trauma, relationship problems, and stress are examples of situations that can create an emotional void. Additionally, interpersonal feelings such as inadequacy or a low self-esteem make life more challenging to navigate. Licensed Psychiatrists can prescribe medications such as anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medications to help treat the symptoms associated with these situations. Unfortunately, these medications often only mask the issue and many psycho-affective drugs are addictive. For this reason, these drugs are usually prescribed in conjunction with other treatments, such as behavioral therapy.

Drugging for Social Reasons

There may not be any significant physical or psychological reasons why some people use drugs. In some cases, people use drugs simply to be social. Consider alcohol consumption. Many people consider themselves to be “social drinkers” because they typically only drink during social gatherings. Although alcohol may be the most common socially used drug, there are lots of other substances that are used socially. Cocaine, LSD, and kava are a few examples.

25 Reasons Why People Do Drugs

Considering all three categories of reasons why people use drugs, below is a list of 25 specific examples:

  1. Grieving a death
  2. End of a relationship
  3. Mental illness
  4. Pain relief
  5. Environmental influences
  6. Relaxation
  7. Self-medication
  8. Financial burdens
  9. Career pressures
  10. School pressures
  11. Family pressures
  12. Peer and social pressure
  13. Abuse and trauma
  14. Boredom
  15. To fit in
  16. Habit
  17. Curiosity and experimentation
  18. Rebellion
  19. To feel in control
  20. For performance enhancement
  21. Isolation
  22. Misinformation or ignorance
  23. Instant Gratification
  24. Addiction
  25. Wide availability
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