Substance abuse and addiction are clearly associated with several negative health effects which can lead to a lifetime of sickness or premature death. While drug and alcohol rehab can help reverse some of the negative effects and improve an individual’s overall health and well-being as time passes, substance abuse causes immense harm to the human body’s vital organs.
There are a wide variety of drugs abused and each of these substances will have varying effects on the body. Even though these drugs will also affect each person differently, here are seven of the most common chronic illnesses that have been linked to substance abuse and dependence.
Most chemicals, including heroin, cocaine, steroids, marijuana, and tobacco (among others) may lead to irreversible damage to the cardiovascular system. The veins arteries and heart are affected by the usage of drugs and alcohol and substance abuse often causes abnormal heart rate, collapsed veins, and infection of these vessels and heart valves. Cardiovascular disease and heart attack can also cause death if the excessive use of addictive substances isn’t properly addressed inside a drug and alcohol rehabilitation setting.
Commonly abused drugs such as marijuana, tobacco, inhalants, cocaine, prescription opiates, and ketamine are just a few of the substances which could lead to respiratory difficulties when smoked. Individuals who abuse these chemicals over a lengthy period of time may develop issues inside the lymph system, such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, pneumonia, and lung cancer.
Mental illness and substance abuse often occur simultaneously. In many instances, those who suffer from addiction also have mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, or personality disorders. While mental disorders can be both a cause and an effect of drug use, both issues have to be treated separately during drug rehab to satisfactorily handle all aspects of the substance abuse and/or addiction.
HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis B and C
Infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS and hepatitis B and C tend to be due to shared or contaminated needles, a weakened immune system, or unprotected sexual activity. These diseases are commonly linked to the misuse of cocaine, cocaine, steroids, methamphetamine, and prescription opioids. Finding the correct substance abuse treatment at a rehabilitation center can help prevent the spread of these infectious diseases.
It is a well-known fact that cigarette smoking causes cancer of the lungs, throat, mouth, larynx, stomach, bladder, pancreas, kidney, and cervix, but many other addictive substances also have been linked to cancer as well. Consistent use of compounds such as alcohol, steroids, and synthetic drugs also have been associated with cancers of several important physiological organs, including the pancreas, stomach, breasts, and liver.
Abuse of amphetamines like Adderall can cause skin ailments such as dermatosis. Injecting illicit drugs like cocaine, amphetamines, and heroin can also cause skin and soft tissue infections. This typically occurs when a person uses non-sterile needles, injects damaging oral bacteria to the body after cleaning needles with spit, or injects a medication directly under the skin instead of right into a vein (also known as skin popping).
Long-term use of any addictive substance such as alcohol or illicit drugs may result in addiction, which is described as a chronic illness. While there are lots of factors that play a role in the progression of dependence, consistent utilization of alcohol and drugs modifies the way the brain’s nerves send, receive, and process details. As a result, overcoming dependence is more than just an problem of willpower. Addiction is a disease that has to be treated with evidence-based clinical treatments and healthcare clinics within a supportive environment such as a rehabilitation center.