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Lecture 15

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Health Sciences
Health Sciences 1001A/B
Shauna Burke

Chapter 18 Use and Abuse of Psychoactive Drugs The Use of Drugs - Psychoactive drug: drug that alters a person’s experience or consciousness o Most often associated with abuse and addiction - Intoxication: short-term state which sometimes unpredictable physical and emotional changes occur Addiction? - Before, applied only when habitual use of drug produced chemical change in user’s body - 2 different levels of addiction o Addiction  4 important characteristics  Compulsive desire for drug  Need to increase dosage associated with psychological and physical dependence  Harmful effects to individual  Harm to society o Habituation  Routine use of substance without level of compulsion or increasing need that characterize addiction Characteristics of Addictive Behavior - Reinforcement - Compulsion or Craving - Loss of control - Escalation - Negative consequence Development of Addiction - Often starts when person does sometime to bring pleasure or avoid pain o If works, repeated - Person becomes increasingly dependent on behavior and tolerance can develop - Although many common behaviors are potentially addictive, most people who engage in them don’t develop problems - Combination of factors involved in development of addiction o Personality o Lifestyle o Heredity o Social and physical environment o Nature of substance or behavior in question Characteristics of People with Addictions - Using substance or activity as substitute for healthier coping strategies - Difficulty dealing with stress and painful emotions - Genetic predisposition involving variations in brain chemistry - Problems with impulse control and self regulation and taking risks Drug Use, Abuse, Dependence - Drugs: chemicals other than food that are intended to affect structure or function of body o Prescription medicines o Over-the-counter substances like alcohol, tobacco, caffeine product o Illegal substances like LSD and heroin Who Use drugs? - All income and education levels - All ethnic groups - All ages - Young people at higher risk - Men twice as likely - Troubled adolescents - Thrill-seekers - Dysfunctional families - Members of peer groups who accept drug use - Low socioeconomical status - Dating young Why do people use drugs? - Experiment - Escape - Cope - Magnification of residence Risk Factors for Dependence - Combination of physical, psychological, social factors - Psychological risk factors for drugs dependence include o Difficulty in controlling impulses o Strong need for excitement, stimulation, immediate gratification o Feelings of rejection, hostility, aggression, anxiety, or depression o Mental illness o Dual (co-occurring disorders) - Social
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