Psychological consequences of drug addiction

The use of drugs, especially if recurrent, protracted or long lasting, may lead to the onset of problems of physical and psychological nature. The prevalence of psychiatric disorders among drug users, in fact, would seem higher than those who don’t use them (Olsson et al., 2015).

According to scientific research the presence of a personality disorder in adolescence may lead to the onset of anxiety disorders, depression and the absence of stable relationships. Disorders would seem to be favored by drug abuse or social problems (Moran et al., 2016).

The endocannabinoid system would seem to play a key role in synaptic arborization. Therefore, exposure to drugs such as cannabis during adolescence could lead to changes in the synaptogenesis of boys and girls resulting in brain disorders and different behavioral problems between sexes. Moreover, the interaction between the endocannabinoid system and sex hormones could play a fundamental role in the manifestation of these specific gender brain differences by acting on the circuits involved in emotional and motivational responses (Rubino & Parolaro, 2015).

The recurrent use of cocaine seems to be associated with a deterioration in the quality of life and academic performance. Quality of life is compromised by the use of cocaine, especially in relation to general and physical health problems. Furthermore, cocaine users would have a significant social impairment with the need for more interventions to support the family, greater attention to general health and quality of life in order to promote the recovery of well-being (Narvaez et al., 2015).

Video titled “Stay Away From Drugs” uploaded on youtube by Jazzy Anne on 2017, 10th october:

According to scientific research, carried out on young Brazilians, cocaine use seems to be associated with the presence of disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, dysthymic disorder, Major Depression, generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, and panic disorder with agoraphobia, personality disorders and suicide risk. The same applies to other addictions: tobacco, alcohol, inhalants, sedatives, hallucinogens, cannabis, amphetamines and opioids (Narvaez et al., 2014). Women who use drugs would be more at risk of suffering from personality disorders, they would be hospitalized 5-6 times more often with an hospitalization period of 6 to 8 times higher than that of the general population. Interventions to exit the drug addiction include psychiatric visits, hospital treatment, detoxification and rehabilitation (Olsson et al., 2015). The use of drugs is therefore a serious psychosocial problem that may become invalidating if you don’t ask for help to interrupt its use treating associated psychological consequences.


Moran P et al. A population-based, longitudinal cohort study (2016). Lancet Psychiatry. 3 (7): 636-45.

Narvaez JC et al. Psychiatric and substance-use comorbidities associated with lifetime crack cocaine use in young adults in the general population (2014). Compr Psychiatry. 55 (6): 1369-76.

Narvaez JC et al. Quality of life, social functioning, family structure, and cocaine use in youth from the general population (2015). Rev Bras Psiquiatr. 12: 0.

Olsson TM et al.Women with comorbid substance dependence and psychiatric disorders in Sweden: a longitudinal study of hospital care utilization and costs (2015). BMC Health Serv Res. 15 (1): 224.

Ruby T & Parolaro D. Sex-dependent vulnerability to cannabis abuse in adolescence (2015). Front Psychiatry. 6:56.

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