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THE ADDICTED BRAIN

Author: Supriya Garhwal, I year of B.A.,LL.B. from Gujarat National Law University


ABSTRACT

Drug addiction and usage are important public and social health problems that impact individuals everywhere in this world. There are still gaps in our understanding of the factors that make a contribution to drug misuse, despite significant progress. On the other hand, drug abuse and addiction are widely known to get a multifactorial etiology. The significance of social factors in the initiation and maintenance of drug use, abuse, and addiction will be examined in this study, with an emphasis on the influence of peer groups, family, living environment and groups. According to the report, creating effective intervention tactics in this field necessitates a thorough understanding of the causes of drug abuse and addiction. The study focuses on the relevance of society in assisting people in overcoming drug addiction.


INTRODUCTION

Drug addiction is a fascinating and essential issue that has its roots in brain function. In the psychological and social context, the drug is a word for a daily regimen substance which directly acts on the brain or nervous system. I define addiction as a pattern of conduct that causes distress, personal anguish, or has a bad effect on one's life. Taking a substance like methamphetamine frequently, for example, might lead to a feeling of compulsion to continue taking the drug despite its bad effects. The loss of a job, financial hardship, or health issues might all be bad consequences. The negative impact is a crucial element of addiction, according to many people. It should now be clear that not every repetitious action is detrimental to your life. Appropriate eating, for example, is a necessary yet repeated action. And it has no harmful consequences under typical conditions.In reality, the reverse is true. It has a beneficial effect.


There are a few more things that can happen when you engage in addictive behavior.Many people have tried and failed several times to cease their habit. To have the same impact, they may have tried increasing the frequency of the activity or the medication dose. They may also discover that when they stop doing the activity or taking the substance, they begin to feel awful and enter a withdrawal state, prompting them to resume using the drug to escape the agony of withdrawal.


DRUGS AND MEDICINES

A curative and beneficial chemical, such as an antibiotic or an antidepressant, is referred to as medicine. A substance can be both a drug and a medication at times. Amphetamine, for example, may be used as a pharmaceutical to treat ADHD or as a narcotic that is misused and addicted.


Alcohol, nicotine, marijuana, some prescription drugs, methamphetamine, cocaine, and other addictive substances include alcohol, nicotine, marijuana, certain prescription drugs, methamphetamine, cocaine, and others. Because medications are so harmful, we must conduct research on them using animals. We could not have learnt as much about drugs or developed the treatments that are available for addicts without the accessibility and proper usage of animals.


When big groups of addicts are compared to large groups of non-addicts, it becomes clear that the addicts have some personal features and environmental elements in common. Of course, if you're struggling with drugs or other addictions, you should get help immediately. While some people can simply quit using drugs, others cannot. We have no idea why. Some people require therapy in order to remain drug-free. The essential thing to remember is that therapy is effective. It will help if you get the correct therapy.


More than 80% of persons aged 12 and above have used alcohol at some point in their lives. Other drugs have varying percentages that eventually decrease.Only a small percentage of people have taken heroin at some point in their lives. Medicine expenses are far higher than most people believe. Illegal drugs are expected to cost society around $180 billion per year, alcohol is roughly the same, and tobacco is about the same or slightly higher.


We don't have a precise metric for calculating suffering, but we do know what occurs. We've all heard stories about folks whose lives were nearly ruined by drugs. Our confidence, perspective, and performance are all harmed when we are emotionally beaten by intense drug impulses, or anything else for that matter. Some individuals lose their jobs, their loved ones, their friends, and their personal and financial assets. Some folks lose all they own. Some people end up in court for divorce. Also, due to pharmacological side effects and toxicity, there is a drastic and considerable loss of health. Problems arise when people's health is disregarded, such as when addicts are consumed while getting and consuming drugs.


Some medications drastically alter your life and have disastrous health implications. We frequently hear people state that they are hooked to specific foods or that they are addicted to a certain television series.Various addictions have been documented in literature.


ADDICTION OF GAMBLING

It must be convincingly established that certain people's conduct resembles that of a brain illness or addiction. At the present moment, there is sufficient evidence to classify gambling as an addiction condition. And it is probable that more evidence will emerge in the future, and some other behaviors may be classified as addictions, necessitating treatment for certain people. It has been demonstrated that gambling may be a persistent activity that leads to harmful effects.


Of course, one of the negative consequences might be a financial loss that prevents you from meeting your commitments, such as paying your rent or purchasing food for your family. There are some more traits, in addition to gambling away money that you require. For example, you haven't been able to cut back or stop, and attempting to do so causes you worry. You may lie about how much you gamble or attempt to hide it, and you may gamble after stressful situations. You may be able to stop gambling for a period of time, but you will relapse, just as with other addictions. There are people who behave in this way and benefit from treatment, according to studies.


In terms of the causes of drug addiction, sociological theory says that people become drug addicts as a result of their circumstances or social environment. Sutherland's Differential Association Theory characterizes drug use as a taught habit, most commonly in small intimate groups. According to the social learning theory (Akers & Burgess), drug dependency conditioned learning and reinforcement comes through connection with others who define drug use positively. The Strain hypothesis is concerned with the severe strain placed on individuals, which drives them to break from internalized standards. Drug misuse is seen as an aberrant habit in India, and drug users and addicts are seen as aberrant individuals who, unlike non-conformists, are not interested in improving societal conditions or aiding mankind.


Addiction is caused by a mix of genetics and psychological events. More specifically, we'd want to address some of the societal reasons, as well as how social problems are linked to people. The site of residence, how society views the individual, and how the individual views society some are caused by the person's incorrect perspective, while others are genuine.


The kind of influence of parents, imposition of discipline over the children, the parents' involvement in their children's future career prospects, and parents remaining aware of their obligations towards their children have all been identified as important factors that influence children's decision to enter the drug world. Family members' drinking/smoking and drug-taking habits also have an impact on drug usage.

CASE STUDY

An 18-year-old teenager was discovered seriously addicted to narcotics. He came from a working-class background with both parents employed. The parents were educated up to the intermediate level. The parents' sole goal was to educate their only kid. They were, however, unaware that the children's capacities differed from one another. Because of his poor academic performance, the youngster was often beaten, punished, and scolded. They used to make comparisons between him and the boys who were doing well in school. This experience bothered the child to the point where he told one of his friends, who was also struggling academically. Both of the pals attempted to escape the uncomfortable conditions in which they found themselves at home. They happened to run across one of their friends who used to do drugs. They began using drugs on the instruction of the third friend. The drug's dose was gradually increased, and some of the psychological instability became apparent. He was taken to the clinic on the doctor's instruction. The parents were completely unaware of their error and their son's terrible condition.


In this matter we can clearly see that it was the pressure of exceling in studies which forced the children to take drugs in order to relive their tension, which at a later stage became addiction. So the support and understanding of parents play a vital role in helping their child to stay away from drugs or even if he started having drugs to stop them.


THEORIES OF DRUG USE

A large variety of hypotheses have been developed in the field of drug use research to explain or account for drug use.


1. Control of the environment

According to social control theory, deviations of societal standards are normal, comprehensible, and do not require an explanation. Its proponents claim that what has to be addressed is why people adapt to societal standards. If we were left to our own to do whatever we want , we would all of course breach the law and will engage in various criminal activities and normative offenses.Attachment (or "bonds") to conventional persons, ideas, organizations, and activities, they claim, explains that we have to follow a conduct which will be law- abided and conformance to norms prevailing in the society. We don't want to jeopardize or undermine our "investment" in oureducation,parents, marriage, a legal profession, or conventional religion by indulging in illegal acts, which includes illicit, drug use. As a result, we detect the following models in drug usage: teenagers with college plans or who are married, religious and/or have children are less likely to consume drugs, whereas those without these ambitions are more likely to consume drugs.


2. Self-Control

Self-control theory argues that it is affinity , not normative infractions or criminal activity, that has to be explained. However, its explanation is somewhat different, tracing its main element all the way back to childhood. Low self-control, according to self-control theory, is the element that accounts for deviance and criminality, including drug usage. Weak, ineffective parenting is the answer to the issue of what causes poor self-control. Children who grow up in an atmosphere where their parents are unwilling or unable to praepostor and regulate their disordered conduct develop a pattern of high-risk,impulsive, hedonistic and, eventually, short-term, gratifying behavior, which includes criminality and drug addiction.People that lack self-control tend to beirresponsible, thoughtless,insensitive, self-centered, nonverbal,short-sighted, inconsiderate, intolerant of frustration, and pleasure focused. Cheaters, thieves, Grabbers, liars, and exploiters are what they are. They behave without regard for the long-term implications of their conduct. Drug use is only one of many symptoms of their attitude toward life, which is to do whatever you want, whenever you feel like it, regardless of whether it harms others or, in the long run, harms yourself.


3. Social learning

People are not "naturally" put at a risk to consume drugs or commit crimes, according to social learning theory; instead, they must learn the positive value of non-normative actions. The theory of differential association is the first social version of learning. It pertains primarily to crime and hence is known as the theory of differential association. According to learning theory, children form differential attachments to choose social circles that give "social contexts for exposure" to definitions of acceptable and improper conduct, role models to copy, and chances to engage in certain behaviors. Drug usage may be discouraged or encouraged in these settings.


4. Conflict

According to conflict theory, inequality is the primary cause of drug usage, particularly serious, long-term misuse and reliance on "hard" substances like crack cocaine and heroin. Proponents of this idea say that domestic violence is significantly linked to social class, income, power, and neighborhood. Hard drug usage is substantially more common among lower- and working-class inner-city populations than among more wealthy sections of society. Drug selling is more likely to prevail in powerless,impoverished, socially unorganized groups than in more, structured and strong communities, according to the conflict viewpoint. Open, organized, and widespread drug trafficking is particularly likely if locals are unable to take any necessary political step to act against undesired undertakings among them.Furthermore, in communities where poverty is entrenched, the economic structure has never developed or has decayed and collapsed, and a sense of hopelessness, depression, and anomie is likely to take hold, making drug abuse particularly appealing and attractive, providing a means of "escape from a dreadful condition into one that appears, at least temporarily, more pleasant."


PREVENTION AND TREATMENT OF DRUGS

Drug addiction is to a large part to blame for current criminal conduct and moral deterioration. Unwin has stated that it is to blame for sexplosion. "Just as hippies brought depression, sexual freedom brings pornography, depravity, and obscenity." We must reverse the previous statements in order to avoid future drug addiction. Here are some tips for minimizing drug addiction.


1.The lower the odds of addiction, the stronger the social link: to strengthen the social bond (emotional, rote perception). Every day, for at least two hours, family members should sit and converse with each other, where everyone is free to share whatever he or she wishes, or whatever challenges they are facing.


2. Failure (in exams, in work, in marriage) should be accepted as a natural part of life. If the individual fails to meet his objectives, he must be treated with compassion. This will lessen the sting of failure and boost the ability to deal with adversity.


3. There are many stressors and strains in modern life. To relieve tension, the family must limit their objectives. As a result, the less the pressures, the fewer medications.


4. The kid should learn through his family that he is first and foremost a social being before becoming an individual, and that as a social person, he is responsible to others (parents, grandparents, brother, sister & other relations). This will boost both social commitment and social coercion. As a result, the stronger the social engagement and coercion, the lower the likelihood of drug usage.


5. Drug usage in recent years has surged among school students and slum inhabitants. Providing therapy to these adolescents who are experimenting with drugs will be an effective way to combat illegal drug usage.


6.Because the majority of drug users used drugs because of poor company from friends and family, parents must keep an eye on their children's pals’ circles and relatives.


7. The government formed the Narcotic Intelligence Bureau and approved the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act 1985 to combat drug trafficking. This statute stipulates that anyone implicated in drug trafficking shall be fined one lakh rupees and imprisoned for ten years. The penalty might be enhanced to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to two lakh rupees. A person who stores narcotics for illegal purposes will face a fine, jail, or both. The court may also order that addict be sent to a rehabilitation institution for de-addiction treatment. The Indian government's Ministry of Welfare awards money to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that seek to educate the public about drug addiction.


8. Parents should set a good example by abstaining from using illegal substances. The lower the level of deviance in the family, the lower the likelihood of addiction in the offspring.


9. India's Ministry of Welfare has devised a four-point action plan to combat drug usage. (1) Identifying, motivating, counselling, treating, and aftercare in the community; (2) raising awareness about the effects of drug misuse. (3) Provide training to service providers; (4) Assist non-profit organisations in implementing the programme by giving cash for the creation of counselling and de-addiction centres.


CONCLUSION

As a result, if the fundamental cause of drug addiction is stressful family events and terrible company from friends, it will be tough to treat patients unless and until they have a warm family atmosphere, love, and affection.


As a result, the two key components are strengthening the reliance and enhancing relationships. Many patients are either unable or unwilling to take on family responsibilities. Individuals become more aware of difficulties by participating in discussions about their position in the family in executing prescribed chores, developing good communication within the family, and sustaining family harmony and unity.