Although it’s not always visible, addiction is everywhere. In fact, nearly 21 million Americans are struggling with addiction right now.
Addiction is in our grocery stores, our workplaces, and even, in some cases, our homes. It can be hard to understand from an outside standpoint, but sometimes it helps to take a look at the most addictive drugs to really grasp what an addict is going through.
While genetics account for anywhere between 40 and 60 percent of a person’s addiction risk, environmental factors and mental health also have a significant influence. A lot of drug addiction also has to do with the type of drug the addict is consuming; more addictive drugs have the potential to pose a higher threat than others.
Although it’s best to steer clear of all drugs, there are some that are more dangerous than others when it comes to developing addictions. If you’re interested in learning about the topmost addicting drugs, keep reading!
It’s notorious for being one of the most addictive substances in the world and accounts for nearly 15,000 fatal drug overdoses each year.
When you take a look at how heroin works inside the body and mind, it’s easy to see how so many people get addicted to it. The opioid drug, made from morphine, allows users a sudden rush of pure euphoria after it’s been injected, snorted, or smoked.
Users develop a tolerance quickly to the drug, meaning that they crave higher quantities of heroin each time they use. This makes the risk of overdosing on heroin very, very real.
The painful withdrawals that come with heroin addiction are also a huge hurdle that heroin addicts face when they attempt to get sober. That’s why it’s best to seek help; you really can’t go at it alone!
Most commonly snorted, cocaine is an extremely addictive stimulant that skyrockets the levels of dopamine (the “happy” chemical) in your brain. It makes you feel like you’re on top of the world until you need another bump.
If used frequently, cocaine can damage the communication between nerve cells. It can also make your brain less receptive to dopamine, meaning that you need more and more in order to feel happy.
Crack cocaine is also highly addictive and dangerous. With this drug, users will smoke the rocks to achieve a high that kicks in faster than its powdery counterpart. Feelings of excitement, hyperactiveness, and bliss rush around in the user’s brain before the high dies down around 10 short minutes in. Then, the user craves more.
Yes, alcohol is a drug. It’s also the most widely used drug in America.
Around 14.4 million Americans are struggling with an alcohol use disorder. Whether it’s alcoholism or binge drinking, anytime that alcohol is consumed in excess is dangerous.
As far as long-term risks go, alcohol can cause high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive issues. Short-term, alcohol can cause impaired judgment and locomotive skills, poor decision-making, dangerous behavior, and even death.
Nicotine is easy to come by and unfortunately, it’s all too easy to get addicted to it.
Too often, nicotine exposes both minors and adults to the harmful effects of addiction and tobacco dependency. While nicotine gives the user a buzz, the good feeling doesn’t last forever. If nicotine is regularly used, addiction can come in the form of withdrawals that include poor concentration and intense cravings.
Nicotine can increase blood pressure and narrow the arteries which can increase the risk of heart-related health problems.
4. Crystal Meth
Crystal meth is a manufactured methamphetamine drug that’s extremely dangerous and addictive. It’s one of the most potent stimulants around and is used by over half a million Americans every week.
After smoking, snorting, or injecting crystal meth, users will experience a brief rush of euphoria and intense pleasure. The user’s new sense of wellbeing, happiness, and confidence will leave them wanting more of the drug.
Crystal meth addicts often have damaged blood vessels, increased heart rates and blood pressures, skin sores, and can experience unhealthy weight loss.
While it’s an opioid drug that was once often used to treat heroin addiction, methadone can actually become an addict’s drug of choice very quickly.
Although not as addictive as heroin, the powerful pain relief can become addictive to users who are suffering from aching withdrawals, so much so that the user becomes dependent on it. If methadone is prescribed as treatment, the patient is closely monitored in a medical setting.
Barbiturates are taken by people who want to experience muscle relaxation and dulled nerves. They are also known to reduce anxiety and are mildly sedative. Like other central nervous depressants, barbiturates can aid in sleep but are all too often abused.
These drugs can cause slowed breathing, low heart rate, and can easily become addictive. Because the correct dosage is very difficult to determine, barbiturate overdoses happen frequently.
Mostly ingested in pill form, barbiturates account for hundreds of overdoses across the U.S. each year.
Stay Away From the Most Addictive Drugs
Drugs can rewire a person’s brain, leaving them entirely dependent on quick pleasure and euphoria. They can ruin a person’s life completely, so it’s best to avoid this list of the most addictive drugs at all costs.
Already addicted or know someone who is? Contact us here at SOBA New Jersey to see how our top-rated programs can work for you so that you can start your new, drug-free life.