Nature vs Nurture: What Makes a Cocaine Addict?

According to the Mayo Clinic, the risk factors for drug addiction include the following:

  • Family history of addiction
  • Being male
  • Having another psychological problem
  • Peer pressure
  • Lack of family involvement
  • Anxiety, depression and loneliness
  • Taking a highly addictive drug

This list of factors suggests that both genetic disposition and environmental factors influence the potential for a person to become an addict.

Family History of Addiction

On the nature side of the discussion, a great deal of research is being conducted to investigate the role genetics plays in a person becoming addicted. The objective of much of this research is to identify genetic elements or brain chemistry components that may predispose a person to become an addict. By identifying these factors, researchers hope to create preventative strategies in an effort to avert a person from becoming addicted.

The role of environment may also influence addiction. When it comes to family history, the factors correlated with substance abuse include the following:

  • Childhood physical and sexual abuse
  • Family member’s use of substances
  • Family attitude toward substance abuse
  • Family structure, such as whether a child was raised with both parents
  • Family conflict, such as fighting and domestic violence
  • Mental illness in the family
  • History of trauma
  • Adverse childhood events

Family history clearly has a role in a person’s inclination to use drugs, both from a nature and environmental perspective.

Risk Factors for Anxiety and Depression

Anxiety and depression are both correlated to drug addiction. According to the Mayo Clinic, risk factors for anxiety and depression include the following:

  • Chronic health condition or serious illness
  • Substance abuse
  • Having biological relatives with depression or anxiety
  • Having traumatic experiences as a child
  • Experiencing stressful life events
  • Having few friends or other personal relationships
  • Previous episodes of anxiety or depression

Both family history and environmental factors contribute to a person becoming anxious or depressed.

Treatment of Cocaine Addiction

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), addiction treatment must deal with every aspect of a person’s life to help the individual stop using drugs, maintain a drug-free lifestyle and achieve productive functioning in the family, at work and in society.

NIDA acknowledges that addiction is a complex and chronic disease that often requires long-term or repeated episodes of treatment to achieve the ultimate goal of sustained abstinence and recovery.

Get Help for Cocaine Abuse

Cocaine abuse is a serious problem in this country and a potentially lethal event each time a person uses cocaine. Stop using cocaine before your use of it reaches those dangerous levels. Call us to ask questions about your cocaine use. To be assured of confidentiality, as well as to receive answers to any questions you might have, call our toll-free number any time. We are available 24 hours a day. We want to help you find the right treatment program to handle cocaine abuse and can provide you with options, information about insurance and resources. We are here to help.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email