Drug Abuse (cont.)
Roxanne Dryden-Edwards, MD
Dr. Roxanne Dryden-Edwards is an adult, child, and adolescent psychiatrist. She is a former Chair of the Committee on Developmental Disabilities for the American Psychiatric Association, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, and Medical Director of the National Center for Children and Families in Bethesda, Maryland.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Drug abuse and addiction facts
- What is drug abuse?
- What is drug addiction?
- What types of drugs are commonly abused?
- What are the physical and psychological effects of drug abuse and addiction?
- What are causes and risk factors for drug abuse and addiction?
- What are symptoms and signs of drug abuse and addiction?
- What happens to your brain when you take drugs?
- How is drug addiction diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for drug addiction?
- What are complications of drug addiction?
- What is the prognosis of drug addiction?
- Can drug abuse and addiction be prevented?
- Where can people get help for drug abuse or addiction?
- Find a local Psychiatrist in your town
What are complications of drug addiction?
Drug addiction puts its sufferers at risk for potentially grave social, occupational, and medical complications. Drug addiction increases the risk of domestic violence in families. Individuals with chemical dependency are also much more likely to lose their job and less likely to find a job compared to people who are not drug addicted. Children of drug addicted parents are at higher risk for poor social, educational, and health functioning, as well as being at higher risk for abusing drugs themselves.
In addition to the many devastating social and occupational complications of drug addiction, there are many medical complications of chemical dependency. From the respiratory arrest associated with heroin or sedative overdose to the heart attack or stroke that can be caused by cocaine or amphetamine intoxication, death is a highly possible complication of drug addiction. People who are dependent on drugs are also at higher risk of developing chronic medical conditions as complications of drug addiction. Liver failure and pancreatitis associated with alcoholism and brain damage associated with alcoholism or inhalants are just two such examples.
What is the prognosis of drug addiction?
If treated, the prognosis of alcoholism and other drug addictions improves but is not without challenges. Recovery from substance abuse is usually characterized by episodes of remission (abstinence from drug use) and relapse.
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