Addiction is a very common disorder among individuals of all ages, races, and religions. It manifests in many different ways, and sometimes can be difficult to identify. According to Addiction and Recovery, approximately 10% of the population is addicted to drugs or alcohol, but what causes addiction? Can addiction be genetic? Here at Atlanta Recovery Place, we want to provide information in regards to addiction and its causes, whether it be the environment or a genetic disposition.

What Is Addiction?

According to Addiction and Recovery, people abuse substances as a way to escape, relax, or even as a way to reward themselves. These substances, when used overtime, can make an individual feel like they need them to just to live a normal life. This is caused by dependency and tolerance to the substance. The addiction will worsen overtime if not treatment properly. Having professional treatment and having professional detox is helpful in the aid to recovery. Support systems and professional treatment is important to the recovery process.

Can Addiction Be Genetic?

According to Addiction and Recovery, there are many different causes to an addiction. These causes aren’t completely genetic and can contribute to things such as peer pressure. These causes include:

  • Addiction and genetic disposition – 50% to 60% of addiction is due to genetic factors within a family. This has been proven within studies, such as the twin studies. When an identical twin was addicted to a substance, the other twin was at an increased risk. Though family history is correlated with addiction, it is not always the cause.
  • Poor coping skills – When dealing with stress and anxiety some individuals have poor coping skills. Stress is a very important risk factor in individuals with depression and anxiety. 
  • Negative thinking – Some individuals have a lot of negativity within their life which can lead to negative thinking. This negativity can make you feel stressed, uncomfortable, unhappy, and discontent. When you try to quit cold turkey it can cause negative thinking.
  • Co-occuring disorder – Some individuals experience a co-occuring disorder such as anxiety or depression that can contribute to this disorder. Approximately 15% to 30% of people who have issues with addiction also have an underlying disorder. 

Addiction itself isn’t always caused by genetics, and can be caused by many other things, but genetics can certainly contribute to someone’s vulnerability to addiction and substance abuse. 

Signs of Addiction

There are two basic signs and qualities of an addiction. These basic signs consist of:

  • The using of this substance may first start as casual and then lead to a daily occurrence. For example, one drink or substance can lead to another.
  • The using continues and may even increase even despite the negative symptoms and consequences to this substance. For example, the addiction may cause problems within the individual’s life and the relationships of those around him.
  • There may be emotional, physical, and even psychological changes within an individual and their body. They may be noticeable or they may not be noticeable to the individual that is abusing the substance or the people within this individual’s life.This being said, each individual is different and experiences different things, so the signs and symptoms may not be that noticeable.  

It is important to be able to understand and to be able to read the signs an individual is experiencing during their addiction. This can help them get the professional help and social support that they need during this difficult situation. Maintaining a positive attitude is crucial during the recovery process and maintaining sobriety. 

How Can Atlanta Recovery Place Help?

Here at Atlanta Recovery Place, we want our clients’ recovery process to be successful and as smooth as possible. We are here to assist in the maintenance of sobriety and preventing future relapse. While being an addict can be genetic, there are also many other causes of addiction. We make sure to address these causes and needs with each and everyone of our clients. Reach out to us today to get a jumpstart on your recovery! 

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