Drug addiction and substance abuse has become a major issue in today’s world. Their impact ranges from behavioral changes to medical and health effects. Of most importance is the abuse of drugs during pregnancy and during the early life of an individual. According to Slamberova (2012), the number of infants with defects related to drug use has increased rapidly over the years. Substance abuse refers to the patterned use of drugs in which the users use or consume the substances in amounts or through methods that are harmful to themselves and to others. It is the maladaptive pattern of substance use that leads to clinically significant distress as directly manifested by recurrent use of the substance, recurrently leading to numerous medical impacts (Green and Smith, 2010). The impacts of substance abuse are mainly and most severe to the children who are either directly linked to the use of drugs or indirectly linked to the use of drugs. This paper explores how substance abuse and drug exposure during childhood impacts the success during adulthood.
A research conducted by Anda, Felitti, Bremner, Walker, and Whitfield (2006) clearly established that substance abuse is among the numerous factors that has major impact on the development of the brain in children. Children who have been affected by substance abuse have slower development of the brain that others and for this reason have a slow growth and development rate than their counterparts. In schools, children affected by substance abuse show dropped performance and in most cases are not able to catch up with other students.
The effects of substance abuse do not have to come directly from children having been involved. The family members also play a major role in the effects. Children with parents, siblings, or other family members who are affected by substance abuse are often the kind that would be termed as the forgotten victims. The parents are mainly so much involved with drugs such that they do not have time for their children. Unpredictable and inappropriate behaviors, lack of appropriate care, and unstructured homes are often the results of substance abuse. To children this is scary and disturbing and this translates directly to numerous problems in the future of these children. Drugs mostly lead to chaos in homes. The orderliness and the expectations that the homes should be the safe place is sacrificed to the addiction of the parents. The expectations and the household rules actually degrades and may actually become non-existent which becomes troubling to children as they cannot trust their parents to being dependable enough to raise them up or uphold their families. According to Phoenix house (2015), children who go through neglect and abuse may have not learned the fundamental things in life.
The main impact however, is the effects drugs and substance abuse cause on the health of the affected people (National Center for Biotechnology Information, 2015). Similar to adults, drugs have impacts on the children. Actually, the effects are harsher for children than they are for adults. Psychological pressure and stress leads to dangers in the health of the individuals. As numerous researchers explains, alcohol use for a long time leads to severe damages to the liver while excessive consumption of tobacco severely damages the breathing system of the users. To children, these impacts have more severe effects than just being health impacts. They also affect the social, psychological, and physical development of the clients in a way that they seem retarded in relation to others.
With the above discussion, it is clear that substance abuse is both negative to the parents as well as the children involved. They destroy the health of the users and of children leading to major impacts tohe success of the children. It is evident that children whose parents are affected to no drug have a high probability of having a brighter future than children rose under the influence of
Anda, R., Felitti, V., Bremner, J., Walker, J., Whitfield, C., Perry, B. . . . Giles, W. (2006, April 1 The enduring effects of abuse and related adverse experiences in childhood: A convergence of evidence from neurobiology and epidemiology. Retrieved May 19, 2015, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3232061/
Green, M., & Smith, R. (2010). Substance Abuse: The Impact on Children and Families. Retrieved May 19, 2015, from https://www.missouristate.edu/assets/swk/Trainers_Guide_Module_13.pdf
National Center for Biotechnology Information. (2015). Chapter 2 Impact of Substance Abuse on Families. Retrieved May 19, 2015, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK64258/
Phoenix house. (215). How Your Substance Abuse May Have Affected Your Child. Retrieved May 19, 2015, from http://www.phoenixhouse.org/family/how-your-substance-abuse-may-have-affected-your-child/
Slamberova, R. (2012, April 19). Drugs in Pregnancy: The Effects on Mother and Her Progeny. Retrieved May 19, 2015, from http://www.biomed.cas.cz/physiolres/pdf/61 Suppl 1/61_S123.pdf

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