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What is substance abuse disorder?

Substance abuse disorder or drug addiction is a disease that affects your brain. It makes it difficult to practice impulse control regarding legal and illegal substances. Instead, you may use drugs, regardless of the harm it causes.

If caught with illicit substances, you could face criminal charges.

What are the symptoms of substance abuse disorder?

If you have an addiction, you may feel compelled to use a drug. You may need to use it daily or several times a day. When the urges come on, they come on too strong to ignore. You may find yourself unable to think of anything else. The longer you use a particular drug, the more you may need to have the same effect.

Many people with substance abuse disorder will perform risky or illegal acts under the influence of the drug. Addiction causes physical changes in your brain, making it more difficult to stop.

What causes substance abuse disorder?

Substance abuse disorder is a mental illness. Various factors can impact whether a person may develop a drug addiction. For instance, your environmental factors, how you grew up and the people around you can influence your decisions.

Additionally, genetics may play a role. If you know family members who struggle with drug addiction, you have a higher chance of struggling with it too. Genetics can also play a role in how quickly you develop an addiction. Other mental health disorders may also contribute to drug use.

If you have a substance abuse disorder and face conviction for a drug-related crime, you may be eligible for conditional discharge after the first offense.