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The Family and Addictions; Benzodiazepines

Across human history, substance abuse has become a difficult public health issue. Excessive usage of potentially addictive substances or alcohol, which can affect physical functions is referred to as substance misuse. Addiction is associated with the use of drugs. Addiction has the ability to completely take over an individual’s life. The effects of drugs are said to make people feel happy or comfortable. As a result, substance abuse can lead to a person becoming obsessed and abusing substances on a regular basis. Many people who suffer from addictions are unable to admit that they have a problem. They claim that if they chose to, they would stop misusing drugs at any time. However, without expert assistance, it is difficult for a person to overcome an addiction.

Benzodiazepines are commonly used for insomnia and anxiety, among other things. The prescriptions are generally harmless, although the consequence can be lethal in the case of an overdose. By altering brain neurotransmitters, benzodiazepines tend to dampen the central nervous system, resulting in decreased brain activity. Therefore, prevalent benzodiazepine psychological effects include lethargy, depression, and exhaustion, whereas larger doses reduce motor coordination and exhilaration. Because of the drug dosage and effectiveness, benzodiazepine therapy leads to psychological dependence in the long term. Addiction is more common in patients who take a larger dose of high-potency drugs. Addiction leads to a loss of confidence in patients and a high level of drug-seeking behavior.

Addiction to substance use can be linked to precipitating and predisposing factors. There are two behaviors in the family setting that are seen to be the causes of the trait to continue within the family structure. Studies have been able to identify some of the risk factors which lead to one developing the drug use disorder. As per the National Institute on drug abuse( 2021), family history is one of the factors which causes the development of addiction. The research states that in the case whereby a person has a family member who is a drug addict, then that means the chances of another person from the family developing addiction is very high. The other factor is genetics. The risk of developing an addiction because of genetic factors is said to be between 50-70 percent. This factor states that when a person has a blood relative who has the disorder, the people are at a higher risk of developing a similar disorder.

Addiction may wreak havoc on familial relationships, destroy trust, and stifle communication. Members of the family who have a loved one who is suffering an addiction frequently go through a range of difficult feelings. The despondency that a loved one experiences as a result of substance usage is immensely frustrating. Whenever a loved one is caught up in the chains of drug addiction, family members may feel helpless. On the other hand, family members can assist their dear ones in achieving and maintaining recovery. In supporting the family member who is addicted to drugs, the family members, for instance, the parents, could play the supporting role of a caretaker by encouraging the addicted member to take some thoughtful and good action to recover from the addiction. Another healthy role that the family members could play is holding the addicted member accountable for his actions and then rewarding them for the positive choices they make. This would encourage the addicted family members to reform from the addiction.


National Institute of Mental Health (2021, March). Substance Use and Co-Occurring Mental Disorders

United Nations. (2019). World Drug Report 2019: 35 million people worldwide suffer from drug use disorders while only 1 in 7 people receive treatment. Retrieved from million-people-worldwide-suffer-from-drug-use-disorders-while-only-1-in-7-peoplereceive-treatment.html


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