What Causes Drug or Alcohol Addiction? 3 Common Factors


There are thousands of reasons why people get addicted to any substance, but the two most common substances people run into on a daily basis are drugs and alcohol. These addictions can ruin lives, marriages, careers, and futures… But have you ever wondered why people get so addicted? Or why something like drinking once can get so out of control? 

While every single addict has a different story, there are plenty of common factors that can increase the likelihood of getting addicted to drugs and alcohol. While there’s not one cause, looking out for these common factors in your life or the life of a loved one, might just save a life.

1. Pain

There’s a saying in many recovery groups: “The addiction is not the problem, it is the solution.” You are going to drugs and alcohol or any other vice for a reason. You didn’t decide to just wake up one day and become an addict or let a substance take total control of your life, something happened to cause this. It’s often some type of pain.

Maybe you started drinking after a breakup, or started doing drugs during a low point in your life just to feel something. The point is, there’s a massive hole in your life that you need to fill with drugs and alcohol, and the addiction is a symptom of running away from the pain.

That’s why many addiction recovery programs will tell you to look back and identify the problem you are trying to solve with the substance. Only by healing that pain can you move forward in recovery.

2. Your Environment And Ease Of Access

Many of the addicts that you will hear stories from will likely all have their tales start in the same way. ‘My parent/spouse/family member/best friend’ used this vice, so I did too. We are products of our environment, and if we are in an environment where accessing the vice is easy and the vice is commonly used, it’s much harder to resist.

Growing up in a household where everybody drank or where drugs were left unsupervised and easy to find/steal for experimentation can lead to an addict being born. Especially if your environment doesn’t understand the dangers of drugs and alcohol and promotes it as being normal. That normalization can make it much harder to seek out a rehab clinic like Allendale Treatment.

3. The Development Of The Brain And Your Age

It is pretty commonly known that the human brain doesn’t stop adapting and growing until about the age of 25. Until then it can be very easily influenced and changed by various factors, and one of those factors that warps the brain the most are addictive substances.

The younger you are whenever you start using drugs or alcohol, the easier it becomes for the brain to fully depend on the substance and the more likely it is for the process to lead to addiction. That doesn’t mean you can’t get addicted after the age of 25, but it is much harder for a developed brain to become addicted.

No Matter The Cause, The Outcome Is Hopeful

These are just three of the thousands of causes of drug and alcohol addiction, and everyone has their own story when it comes to their addiction. However, no matter the story or the circumstances, you need to know that recovery is possible. The brain can change back, and you can get back to how you lived before addiction took over your life.

It will take work, but with the correct help, you can recover and get back to being who you are really meant to be.