Although drug abuse often begins with a conscious decision to experiment with a substance, research has found that drugs interfere with normal brain functioning. Drugs can cause long term effects on brain metabolism and activity.
These changes in the brain often naturally progress from drug abuse to drug addiction; an uncontrollable craving that needs treatment to overcome.
Addiction can affect anyone and both legal and illegal drugs can be addictive.
Drugs are often categorised by the effect they produce as stimulants, depressants and hallucinogens:
Stimulants are drugs that increase the activity of the central nervous system and often give feelings of greater confidence, alertness and energy. Cocaine and Crack, Ecstasy, Nicotine, Amphetamines, Alkyl Nitrites and Anabolic Steroids are all stimulants.
Depressants are drugs that reduce the activity of the central nervous system and usually cause impaired judgement, coordination and balance. Alcohol, Solvents, Heroin, tranquillisers and Barbiturates are depressants.
Hallucinogens alter perceptions of reality and change the way individuals experience the world through their senses (often causing users to see or hear things that are not real). LSD, Cannabis, Ketamine and Magic Mushrooms are hallucinogens.
There are many reasons why individuals may abuse drugs and these reasons will be different for different people. Some of the common reasons are:
- Peer pressure
- The need to experiment
- The belief that drugs may help to solve problems
- Enjoyment of the effects
The type of treatment will depend on the individual and the drugs involved and no single treatment is appropriate for all individuals. Counselling and psychological support, medication and substance-abuse rehabilitation centres are common treatment methods.
Mindset Coaching, especially that which uses Cognitive Hypnotherapy can be useful during the post withdrawal phase of treatment. The hardest part of recovery is often staying off of the drugs after the initial treatment period. Mindset coaching, psychotherapy and hypnotherapy can be used to reinforce positive changes to break the addiction.
Mindset coaching, NLP and hypnotherapy can also help an individual to learn new behavioural responses to live without the addiction.
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