Does every drug user become dependent?

Does substance use inevitably lead to addiction? No. A person will become dependent if and only if certain conditions or variables are given which allow the development of an addiction.

We will talk about addiction when we talk about addiction. It implies that the person relates to a substance from a need. He needs to use and if there is no substance, he becomes anxious, irritated and suffers from withdrawal symptoms. Let’s look at this in more detail.

    The relationship between consumption and addictions

    Imagine a staircase with three steps. Each step is a different color. In the first, green, we have the use of substances. In this case, we are talking about simple, unproblematic and sporadic consumption. this it does not have short or long term difficulties and does not have very serious consequences.

    The second step, yellow, puts us on alert. It is drug addiction that refers to a more complicated use. We can already think of an excess, a lack of control and setting limits. It can be occasional but excessive use. Substance abuse, after consumption to observe some unpleasant difficulties and consequences. Drinking too much alcohol and playing a big part in the cause of an accident.

    Finally, on the red rung, higher, we place the most problematic consumption, which is addiction or dependence. The object of addiction becomes a priority in a person’s life. The urge to consume leads the person to perform acts that they would not otherwise do. Think all day about consuming, working on consuming or consuming clothes; in short, the drug addict lives to consume. The consequences are serious, on a personal (physical and psychological), professional, family, social or legal level. Initiating treatment in this case is fundamental.

    As we mentioned at the beginning, not everyone who just uses a substance will go to worse scalesIn other words, not all consumers will be addicted.

    If the user of the substance takes a step up a step, he will transform its mere use into something that will bypass excess and risk. And if he climbs one more step, he will find himself a prisoner of himself, in his need to consume no matter what.

      The scale … unidirectional?

      A person can stay in the first stage without having any problems related to consumption. Or go up the second step and stay there, sometimes have problems with excess and uncontrollability, Or you can also go on and reach the top. It is the path of dependence, which gradually rises, so that consumption necessarily increases. This is the path of ascension.

      As for decline, to recover from addiction, there are different theories and models. On the one hand, we have the harm and harm reduction modelThis will help a person who has decided to use to do so in the most responsible and prudent way possible, without seeking abstinence as a goal.

      From this model, we can think that a person who has reached the level of dependence will be able to go down the step of the abuse and try to moderate it, and can even reach the first stage, maintaining a simple and responsible use of substances.

      On the other hand, abstentionist models they argue that those who have reached the degree of addiction and decide to recover can no longer use, not even in moderation. It could mean losing control again and returning to the path of addiction. Therefore, following the idea of ​​the ladder, an addict could not go down to the second or the first rung. He should not approach or flirt directly with consumption.


      So abstinence yes or no? As each case is unique, the recovery strategy will vary depending on the characteristics of the people and the type of connection they have made to the substances. There is therefore no single method or model that is valid for all cases of people with problematic substance use. That is why the direction of the ladder will be defined by each person.

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