Recognizing Addiction Risk Factors

Last Updated: Feb 24th 2020

Reviewed by Brittany Polansky

Recognizing Addiction Risk Factors

Once you’re on the road to addiction, it is difficult to stop. The longer it goes untreated, the more intense it becomes. That is why you need to stop an addiction from happening in the first place. If you want to protect yourself or others from falling into the spiral of addiction, then you will need to know prevention strategies. One of the best ways to prevent addiction is to recognize and address risk factors. Take a look at your surrounding environment. What do you think can spur an addiction? Here are the most common risk factors, and how you can address them accordingly.

Lack of supervision: Addiction can occur early on in childhood, usually when children are left unsupervised. It is important that children and adolescents have adult role models keeping an eye on them and setting a good example. Children are easily influenced by their environment, and if they are around people who stay away from addictive substances, then they are less likely to fall victim to addiction themselves.

Drug availability: When drugs are readily available, it is easy to become addicted. Prescription drugs are the most available addictive substances in most households. While most prescription drugs are great for treating illnesses and ailments, it may be wise to consider alternatives. Speak with your doctor about other solutions for health problems, and only use prescription drugs as a last resort. Limit the amount of prescriptions you are taking so that you are reducing the amount of readily available substances within your home.

Stress: Many people turn to addiction because of stress. They use drugs and alcohol as a way to calm their nerves and to unwind after a stressful day. Although it seems like a good idea at the time, relying on certain substances to de-stress can be harmful, especially when it leads to an addiction down the road. Find other methods for combatting stress in your everyday life. Exercise, yoga, vacations, and family get-togethers are all better options for de-stressing. Never look to alcohol or drugs as a solution.

These are the most common risk factors, but a variety of environmental components can affect your chances of encountering addiction. If you believe you are at risk for an addiction, it is best to seek professional guidance immediately. It is easier to defeat the addiction if you catch it in its earliest stages, so don’t hesitate to get help right away.

[cta]What are some other risk factors you’ve noticed in people facing addiction? Let us know below![/cta]

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Brittany Polansky

Brittany PolanskyBrittany has been working in behavioral health since 2012 and is a Primary Clinician at our facility. She is an LCSW and holds a master’s degree in social work. She has great experience with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental health diagnoses as well as various therapeutic techniques. Brittany is passionate about treating all clients with dignity and respect, and providing a safe environment where clients can begin their healing journey in recovery.