Addiction is an unfortunate part of our society. With so many people struggling with addiction, you’d think that the stigma and misconceptions surrounding it would have died out. Sadly, this isn’t the case and plenty of people still believe that addiction is the result of a weak character or low morality.
Addiction is a disease that has several risk factors among them environmental, developmental, and genetic causes. Furthermore, substance use affects people differently. While some develop a dependence on alcohol or a drug easily, others are able to keep taking these substances without getting hooked.
Genetics and Addiction
Addiction has some characteristics in common with chronic illnesses, key among them being heritability. This means that in some cases, addiction runs in families. It’s not uncommon to find those who were brought up by parents who were also drinking themselves. The same goes for taking drugs.
Due to this, several studies have been done to see if there’s any supporting evidence to show a link between addiction and genetics. The American Psychological Association and other leading organizations and scientists believe there is. Some studies have shown that certain gene variations that make a person vulnerable to addiction are hereditary. This means there’s an increased risk of becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol if your parents used these substances. Other studies have also shown that children who grew up in an environment where substances were used have an increased chance of being addicts compared to those who did not.
This doesn’t mean that if your parents were addicts it’s a foregone conclusion that you’ll end up as one. That’s simply not the case as other factors also come into play. However, being aware of the link between genetics and addiction can help you monitor your substance use and take precautions when necessary. The decision on what that looks like remains up to you. For instance, you may choose to never drink or to strictly limit your drinking if your family has a history of alcoholism.
Get the Help You Need
It can be frightening and distressing to learn that you may be predisposed to addiction. This can make it seem that you have no control over your life, especially if you’re already struggling with substance abuse or addiction. It can be tempting to give up and resign to fate but don’t do it.
Like other illnesses, addiction can be treated and managed, even though it can never be completely cured. You just need to find the right addiction treatment center to help in your recovery journey.
At the Robert Alexander Center for Recovery, we have the requisite knowledge and experience to help you conquer addiction. Our addiction treatment programs include detoxification, intensive outpatient, and outpatient treatment, all designed to meet your individual recovery needs. We also offer a family therapy program to assist families that have been devastated by addiction to break free.
Get in contact with us today to learn how we can help you get your life back on track.