Addiction is a complex problem with many facets. Addiction is not black and white. Just as there are multiple factors that lead to a substance use disorder, there is no one-size-fits-all cure for this disease either. Some studies have shown that certain individuals with so-called “addictive personalities” may be more prone to addiction that others. However, addiction is typically a combination of social, biological, environmental, and psychological factors.
Who is At Risk for Substance Dependency and Addiction?
- Individuals who experience childhood trauma, including sexual assault, physical, and emotional trauma. This can shape a child’s view of the world and themselves as they grow and deal with the trauma.
- People dealing with physical or emotional pain, often caused by childhood trauma, which can cause depression, anxiety disorders, low self-esteem, and feelings of low self-worth.
- Some research shows that addiction can run in certain families. Genetics can also lead one person to become hooked on a drug after one use, while other people may not develop a dependency until multiple uses.
- For certain people, peer pressure, peer influence, feelings of insecurity, and the desire to fit in with the crowd can play a part in substance use and abuse.
Learn more about addiction and who may be prone to this disease using these resources:
- Addiction is a Disease Video (SAMHSA) - https://www.samhsa.gov/capt/tools-learning-resources/addiction-as-disease-not-moral-failure
- Are Some People More Prone to Addiction? https://www.thetreatmentcenter.com/blog/people-prone-addiction-others/
- Are certain personalities more prone to drug use? http://www.narconon.org/blog/drug-addiction/are-certain-personality-types-more-prone-to-drug-use/
- Understanding drug use and addiction - https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/understanding-drug-use-addiction
You Are Not Alone – IANA’s Focus on Prevention
There is no sure recipe for what makes an addict. Just because you may exhibit certain personality traits of addiction does not mean you’re destined for substance dependency. Remember, addiction and substance dependence are complex issues and every person’s situation is unique.
Find more information on our website and within the Prevention Center:
- The teen years – the vulnerable period and brain development
- Talking to teens about substance abuse and addiction
- Talking to young adults
- Steps to help prevent substance abuse among children and teens
- Resources for parents, families and teachers on preventing substance abuse
- Know the signs of a substance use disorder
- Strategies for pain management – safer options and opioid alternatives to discuss with your physician
- Where to get help