Addiction Problems: Legal and Psychological Aspects
The phenomenon of addiction is an urgent issue of concern of the modern society and a complicated challenge for the doctors and psychologists. There are diverse types of addiction. One of the most threatening and wide-spread types is the drug addiction. The other types involve Internet addiction, alcohol addiction, smoking addiction, shopping addiction, sex addiction, etc. It is especially complicated since every type of addiction has a tendency to progress dramatically in case a proper, timely and constructive treatment is not provided. The present analysis of the phenomenon of addiction is narrowed to the scope of drug addiction, its impact on the family, main stages, primary causes, legal and psychological aspects, and the explication of why drugs are not to be legalized. Moreover, the major aim of the given analysis is to result in the development of the relevant and consistent drug prevention program.
Analysis of a Drug-Related Research
As far as a drug related research is a multidimensional process it covers such important basic aspects as biological, social and psychological causes of the addiction, main stages, and potential outcomes in order to demonstrate the objective picture. As a matter of fact, the present analysis focuses on the previous experience in terms of prevention and treatment of the given type of addiction in order to evaluate the achievements and identify the main drawbacks. This analysis will be a constructive background for the development of new interventions targeted to prevent or eliminate the effects of the addictive behavioral patterns.
The Stages of Addiction in the Family
According to Koob, “Drug addiction is a chronic relapsing brain disorder characterized by neurobiological changes that lead to a compulsion to take a drug with loss of control over drug intake.” The addiction is a continuous process that tends to follow particular stages in the course of its development. To be more precise, there are such stages as non-involvement phase that is characterized by absence of the use of the given substance; irregular involvement that may be also regarded as a phase of experimentation since a person uses the drugs occasionally and, as a rule, under peculiar circumstances which provoke the need for the drug use; regular involvement stage during which particular habits of drug use are formed; harmful involvement phase when a person modifies the circumstances and opportunities to fit the addictive behavior, and finally, the stage of dependent involvement appears. As a matter of fact, there are cases when some stages are omitted, and the addiction may appear even after the experimental use of the drug. Nonetheless, the reverse order of the stages is not possible.
The report “Family Role in recovery” outlines such stages of the course of addiction as denial, contemplation, action and relapse. The given stages reveal the potential route to the recovery which requires professional, timely and consistent aid as well as constant help and support from the family members. To be more precise, the stage of denial is complicated since the addicted refuses to confess he or she has a problem. As a direct consequence, there is essential reluctance to receive help and to start treatment willingly. The specialists in the field of concern underline that only conscious decision to start cure and become healed from the addiction is the first step to the actual recovery. The stage of contemplation should be comprehended in the following way: the addicted person realizes that there is a serious problem that threatens his or her own health, life, and well-being of his or her family. “This recognition can lead to emotions like fear and guilt as they begin to see the effect their lifestyle has had on themselves and others around them. Behaviour remains challenging”. The third stage involves positive changes in terms of addiction as far as the person starts the treatment course and is eager to be healed. This is the most complicated stage since the person may relapse every second, and is excessively sensitive to the outer impact. Finally, the stage of relapse is the negative outcome of the whole process of potential recovery because “Internally they feel they have failed and are angry and disappointed with themselves. They also feel that having previously achieved their goal or controlled use or abstinence this new denial stage may be shorter than the previous one”. Hence, it may be a transitional stage between the previous cycle and a new one of the recovery struggle.
It is important to discuss the impact of the addiction not only on the person, but also on the family and close people, and vice versa. The family is devastated and is often at the verge of destroy, but the family members should remember that the addiction is a family disease and they are responsible for the recovery of the addicted person. The doctors’ and psychologists’ help is predetermining, but family support and influence is also a very important factor. Therefore, the family should unite during such a complicated and challenging period in their life, and guide their addicted member through the path of recovery.
Ten Reasons Why You Should not Legalize Drugs
The question about legalization of the drugs is a topical and miscellaneous one. Despite the scary statistics and evidence that demonstrates the devastating effect of the drugs’ use, there is a strong intention to legalize drugs as a means to fight their fatal impact. Nonetheless, it is improper, illogical and threatening for the whole community. There are top ten reasons against drug legalization:
- Some people claim that drug legalization is a proper step on the way to elimination of the border violence, albeit such an approach “ignores scientific, legal, and social arguments that highlight what legalizing drugs would cost the United States, and that marijuana legalization would be a failed law enforcement strategy for both the United States and Mexico”.
- The absence of taboo will not reduce the appeal of the drugs to the addicted people and will make the access to the deathly substance easy and wide-open. Hence, the possibility to step on the way toward misery, despair and death will become unobstructed for every person.
- The drugs that are in the illegal status nowadays are considered to be dangerous, mind-altering and leading to the fatal outcome. The society where such type of substance is legalized has no future since the moral background of such a decision is democratic and innovative, but not wise and perspective.
- The legalization of marijuana will not be instrumental due to the idea about its taxation. The absurdness of this idea is explicated further: “The cost of treatment and rehabilitation from addiction and usage associated illnesses far outweighs the cost of any revenue possibly be generated; a government estimate of the cost of drug use just for one year was more than $180 billion”.
- The medical significance of marijuana is not properly justified on the given stage of development.
- The actual income that is made by the criminals due to sales of drugs will not be constructive for the economy of the country. In any case, the majority of the money offered for the “legal” drugs will be the money acquired by means of criminal activity.
- The current stage of the course of fighting the drug use should be considered to be on a significantly high level. The achievements of the given process are evident both in terms of drug addicts’ quantity and trafficking.
- The belief that the elimination of taboo will provide more freedom, and this freedom will decrease the significance of the drugs, and in such a way will reduce the quantity of drug addicts may be constructive in perspective, but such an outcome will victimize at least several generations until the comprehension of the deathly impact will be engraved into mentality of the people.
- The currently discussed problem may be solved only due to consistent, constructive and timely interventions based on the unity of prevention, enforcement and treatment processes. The game of contrast may result in excessively high price for demography, economy, political life and general image of the country on the global scale.
- Finally, such mind-changing and dangerous substances are to be under control, otherwise, the chaos and destruction are inevitable.
The Drug Prevention Program
As far as a set of preventive measures are regarded as one of the basic instruments for fighting drug addiction, it is relevant to develop a drug prevention program. The prevention program will be targeted at the elimination of the currently discussed addiction among the young people who are transitioning from the teenagers to the students. The mission will be represented by the program’s motto: “It is high time to save our future!” The policy statement will include the proclamation of the drug addiction to be one of the most urgent and serious problems of the modern world, and the willingness of the team to make a significant contribution to the process of fighting this addictive habit. Moreover, the confidential procedure is to be guaranteed. The program will consist of three stages. The first one will be conducted in the form of lecture, and will involve the detailed description of each illegal drug with subsequent discussion of the effects, threats and statistics. It is crucial to highlight the dramatic escalation of the drug use among the teenagers and use in order to underline the urgency and topicality of the issue in question. To be more precise, monitoring of the currently discussed area in 2013 resulted in the following statistics: marijuana – 12,7% among the 8th graders and 36,4% among the 12th graders; cocaine – 1% & 2,6 % respectively; hallucinogens – 1,6% and 4,5%.
The second stage will be built on the basis of conversations with the drug addicts who are in the process of treatment. The main aim of such an approach is to demonstrate the despair and destruction of the addicted people as well as complex way they have to pass in the course of treatment. The statistics is also crucial on the given stage since it will not be general, but form a particular rehab. The third stage will incorporate the conversation with those people who has overcome the addiction, and now is back to the normal life. They will tell about difficulties, challenges, losses and lessons learnt. Moreover, they will emphasize that there is an opportunity to get a proper treatment, but the life will never be the same again. Such approach is based on empirical data and direct contact with the drug addicts. Hence, it is more constructive, influential and potentially efficient than lectures and theoretical discussions.
The Biological, Social and Psychological Models that Explain the Causes of the Drug Addiction
Finally, it is proper to discuss the psychological, social and biological causes of drug addiction in order to provide a complete picture of the issue in question. Hence, the biological model of addiction presupposes that the addiction is caused by the unique psychology of a person and his or her genetics. The psychological model highlights that mental disorders, diverse stressful conditions and cognitive difficulties, whereas the social model identifies easy access, peer pressure, low level of the self-esteem, and emotionally distressed condition as the potential causes of drug addiction.
Thus, the phenomenon of drug addiction is a complicated process that requires constructive preventive measures and proper treatment course. The addiction has a destructive impact on the family, but it is the family that should provide unconditional support for the addicted. Moreover, it is closely linked with the criminal activity. Having taken into consideration the major stages, three models of causes, and other peculiarities of the currently discussed issue, the prevention program has been developed. This program is targeted at demonstration of real examples of destruction the drug addiction results in.
Diagram. Tendencies of increase in Drug Use among Teenagers and Youth.