Psychology Papers Sample

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BIOLOGIAL FOUNDATION OF ADDICTION

Reply 1

Hi, I agree with you that addiction can be caused by genetics or environmental factors. Certain genes can definitely make it easier for certain individuals to fall victim of addiction or make it easier for some people to stop using drugs. However, it is important to keep in mind that a person’s genes will never inevitably condemn them to using drugs. There is also no particular trait that is directly linked to addiction to drugs. Rather, an individual’s likelihood to be an addict is significantly influenced by several environmental factors and genetic traits. Just like most genetic traits, not every addict will bear the similar addiction traits. Even if an individual possesses specific traits known to make people prone to addiction, the individual may not inevitably fall into the trap of addiction. Several studies on identical twins have shown the correlation between genetic make-up and addiction (Nestler, 2000). Essentially, if genetic make-up influences addiction behaviors, identical twins will exhibit concordant behavior.

Furthermore, I agree with your assertion that environment also plays a significant role in addiction. These environmental factors include social policy, economic status, culture, religion and exposure to substances (Caprioli, Celentano, Paolone & Badiani, 2007). Some social situations can place an individual at a higher risk for prolonged drug abuse. These situations include, lack of sufficient parenting in childhood, trouble with education and poverty. Some of these environmental situations can serve as triggers. Family or friends who engage in substance abuse may significantly influence a person to also be an addict so as to be able to hang out with them. A local bar may also serve as a trigger for persons affected by alcohol addiction.

An individual who has both genetic traits that influence addiction and is also in an environment that puts him/her at a risk of addiction is at a higher risk to become an addict than other who don’t share similar environmental and genetic risks.

References

Caprioli, D., Celentano, M., Paolone, G., & Badiani, A. (2007). Modeling the role of environment in addiction. Progress In Neuro-Psychopharmacology And Biological Psychiatry, 31(8), 1639-1653. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pnpbp.2007.08.029

Nestler, E. (2000). Genes and addiction. Nature Genetics, 26(3), 277-281. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/81570

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Reply 2

Hi, I liked your point about poor or lack of spiritual skills as one of factors that contribute to addictive behaviors. This is widely ignored but if you think about it critically, a lack of connection to authentic self, higher power and the larger community can significantly contribute to feelings of emptiness, isolation, low self-worth and recurrent feeling of unhappiness that can put such a person at risk to addictive behaviors. The aspect of spirituality, in addition to healthy interpersonal relationships and a feeling of deep connection to others in important ways can promote an individual’s health, well-being and instill the feeling of having meaning in one’s life. Most research is directed at assessing effectiveness of spirituality on recovery from diseases such as addiction. However, before one becomes an addict, spirituality can have a positive effect on their life and help them avoid falling into this trap (Galanter, 2006). The psychological benefit of hope instilled by spirituality cannot be ignored.

If we can connect with our deeper selves and courageously face the dark aspects of ourselves that we spent so much energy repressing the world will in return shine light into the dark corners of our minds where some mad ideas and trauma are stored (Scott, Hodge, White & Munson, 2018). As you stated, addiction is a complex disease and term professional is essential to help heal from past traumas and maintain sobriety and abstinence. A regular spiritual practice permits us to find purpose and meaning in our lives as we travel down the path of life.

However, I disagree with you on the role of poor social skills being a trigger for addiction. I feel poor social skills is unpredictable in determining addiction. A person with poor social skills may not have many friends to introduce them to drugs hence may not he exposed to drugs much. On the other hand he/she may look for friends in the drugs.

References

Galanter, M. (2006). Spirituality and Addiction: A Research and Clinical Perspective. American Journal On Addictions, 15(4), 286-292. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10550490600754325

Scott, L., Hodge, D., White, T., & Munson, M. (2018). Substance use among older youth transitioning from foster care: Examining the protective effects of religious and spiritual capital. Child & Family Social Work. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cfs.12429

 

STIMULANTS AND DEPRESSANTS

Despite their benefits, it is very important to understand the risk factors and considerations of methadone and Antabuse. These include, but not limited to, location, inpatient or outpatient, and duration. This is because patients are different as well as their addiction. Additionally, the side effects would differ from every patient and thus, the distance between the treatment facility and where the patient resides or works at should be considered. Also, it would be very important to understand whether a patient needs inpatient or outpatient treatment even if this would be determined by the duration he or she has been an addict. These treatments are linked to respiratory depression, which can result to heart attack, heart failure, serious respiratory difficulties, or even death (Erickson 2007).

As aforementioned, how the addiction would be treated would be determined by the duration the victim has had as an addict. The victim is likely to be influenced by multidimensional response pattern and thus becoming an addict again. This would be because of the return of the addiction disease due to the treatment being used to suppress the urge of taking the drug, e.g. heroin (Seivewright 2000). This treatment would, for instance, include Methadone, which is seen to be associated with some contradictions, in spite of its advantages to the victim.

It would be very important to firstly educate the patients about Methadone and its effects. This would enable them to understand all the steps that they would take and be aware of their bodies whenever they feel some changes. Detoxification would a good alternative for antagonist approaches (Goldberg 2014).

References

Erickson, C. K. (2007). The science of addiction: From neurobiology to treatment. New York: W.W. Norton &.

Goldberg, R. (2014). Drugs across the spectrum. United States: Wadsworth.

Seivewright, N. (2000). Community treatment of drug misuse: More than methadone. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

DISCUSSION FORUM BOARD

The three most important aspects in the development of substance abuse and addiction are environment, trauma and peer pressure. The environment encompasses the areas a person grows and include factors such as divorce, sustained arguments, mental illness and drug or alcohol abuse (Coulon & Gorji, 2016). For instance, in families where the parents fight frequently generates high levels of stress among the children which have the potential of predisposing them to addiction in an attempt to kill the pain. Children can also grow up mimicking their parents’ behaviors of drug and alcohol abuse. Traumatic events leave scars in mind and, over time, the victim may choose to engage in drugs to dull the pain. Some of the potentially traumatic events include neglect, verbal, physical and sexual abuse, accidents, natural disasters, and terrorism. Substantial evident indicate a high prevalence of adult substance results from the childhood trauma. Peer pressure to drug abuse affects both teenagers and adults. For instance, spouses can influence each other as it is the case among the college students. I have chosen the three aspects because development of addiction arises from an interaction of multiple factors (Inaba & Cohen, 2014). Extensive evidence from the available literature indicates that the three aspects have high affinity to addiction.

In all the three aspects, the biological factors play a critical role in predisposing a person to addictive behaviors. The biological model stipulates that every person has unique physiology and genetics which lead to addiction (Wise & Koob, 2014). Each one has a varying degree of becoming addicted to a substance (Inaba & Cohen, 2014). For instance, there are those who enjoy the drug until it becomes tempting and unable to resist. In others, they may have a deficiency in their capacity to resist particular impulses which make them addicted. Therefore, recovering from the addiction requires a proper recognition and understanding of a person’s genetic susceptibility.

References

Coulon, P., & Gorji, A. (2016). Tightrope or slackline? The neuroscience of psychoactive substances. Trends in pharmacological sciences, 37(7), 511-521.

Inaba, D. S., & Cohen, W. E. (2014). Uppers, downers, all arounders: Physical and mental effects of psychoactive drugs (8th ed.). Medford, OR: CNS Productions, Inc. ISBN: 9780926544390.

Wise, R. A., & Koob, G. F. (2014). The development and maintenance of drug addiction. Neuropsychopharmacology, 39(2), 254.

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