Connections between Poverty, Substance Abuse, and Child Abuse - Treatment Solutions
Learn more about the connection between drug addiction and poverty. Is there a connection between low income status and substance abuse. Exploring the Nature of the Relationship. Between Poverty and Substance Abuse : Knowns and Unknowns. Nancy J. Smyth. Kathleen A. Kost. AB!3TRACT. The relationship between addiction and poverty is complicated. Lower income people are slightly more likely to struggle with drug or alcohol.
If the economy is not thriving and jobs are not available, it is more plausible someone who is bored, with nothing else to do to pass the time, would get addicted to drugs.
It is not clear why one person can try a drug without getting addicted, while others fall for their effect immediately. If there are no financial resources, there is no access to a rehab center, which can put a person at risk of dying from an overdose or spiraling out of control and becoming lost in their addiction forever.
Understanding the Relationship Between Poverty and Addiction
Federal and local governments are doing everything they can to reduce overdose deaths in the country. But those who live in poverty have fewer chances of entering rehab than those who are better off financially merely because they cannot afford to pay for it.Drug Addicts "Poverty in Chicago" PBS Documentary WTTW
On another note, those living in poverty and attempting to quit drugs are often times more exposed to the drug trade. People in poverty stricken areas find that the selling of drugs can offer them fast money.
For someone who is not used to having a lot of money, the ideas of making a few hundred dollars in a day by selling drugs is very appealing.
Imagine trying to stay sober when you know many people and locations to easily access your drug of choice.
Trying to maintain sobriety in an area that is ripe with using and selling drugs is like telling someone addicted to gambling growing up across the street from a casino not to gamble. Mental Health and Poverty Another factor to consider is that many in poor communities do not have viable access to mental health programs. In fact many could be living with mental health problems and not even know how serious the problems are. Financial stress is a very real thing and can lead people to drugs or alcohol as a means to cope.
Another example would be PTSD in violent poor neighborhoods. Another common mental health problem in poverty stricken communities is depression, due to lack of money and other issues that come with living in poverty.
Whatever the diagnosis may be, stress, PTSD, depression, it is a known fact that many of these people will use substances to cope with these problems. If there were better mental health institutions in poverty stricken neighborhoods, it could help reduce the amount of drug and alcohol abuse.
Connections between Poverty, Substance Abuse, and Child Abuse
Education and Drug Addiction In the past, many people assumed that those who were educated, with a college degree, and a successful career could not possibly get addicted to drugs.
That is no longer the case because drugs affect people of all ages, economic, and education backgrounds. While there is no way of knowing for sure, there is more risk of becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol for those without education. The opioid epidemic has shown us that people from all walks of life and economic backgrounds can fall into drug addiction.
The constant news about celebrities dying from accidental overdoses is all the example we need. While there is a higher risk of becoming addicted for the uneducated or those who drop out of school, parents need to keep a close eye on who their kids are hanging out with to protect them. In this environment, nobody is safe. Many factors influence a person who decides to use drugs or alcohol in their lives. From education, to family history, and genes, some are more prone than others to becoming addicted.
Substance abuse is not the sole driving force behind the worldwide phenomena of poverty; people born into poverty cannot have been driven to poverty by drug usage. There must be more to explain the relationship that clearly exists. Another research paper suggests that literacy, education, poverty, income equality and unemployment are factors that lead to drug abuse, further complicating the relationship.
Conflicting papers do lead to an obvious but important point.
Economic Status and Abuse | Dual Diagnosis
Poverty and addiction are interlinked. Conjoined at the hip, both issues feed off each other and their effects strengthen their respective feedback loops. Poverty leads to mental states which can lead to drug abuse which leads to addiction, which begets crime, which leads to worse employment prospects. A flow diagram to show the effects and directions that these two conditions could lead to would be a huge circular mess, with arrows flying in all directions.
The question then becomes, how does a government fight poverty or substance abuse? Based on existing evidence, perhaps the best answer is that one problem cannot be adequately addressed without also attending to the other.