Addiction is a disease that can affect anyone. Scientists believe genetics predispose many to addictive behavior. However, experts also understand how certain environmental factors influence addiction. What are environmental factors? They’re the features in your surroundings influencing the chances of developing an addiction.
What Are Environmental Factors?
Community, family, social groups and education also influence the desire to abuse drugs. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that addiction begins during childhood. Your home environment puts you at risk for drug abuse before understanding what illicit substances are.
The environmental risk factors for drug addiction include:
- Aggressive behavior as a child
- Weak social skills
- Family members engaging in drug use or criminal activity
- Favorable attitudes toward firearms
Overall, research shows that neighborhood pride reduces the risk of drug abuse. This is because an organized community offers more opportunities for young people to participate in constructive activities.
Unfortunately, children without access to after school activities may be more likely to engage in undesirable behaviors. Additionally, they might have trouble developing a sense of belonging and struggle with understanding their place in society.
However, community involvement can be detrimental if the population has favorable attitudes toward drug use. This is why recovery communities are especially helpful in supporting sobriety. They help people find encouragement and connection when their own communities isolate them. This support is crucial to lasting recovery.
Furthermore, people’s social environments affect addiction risk as well. Peers have a huge influence over personal attitudes and behaviors. Children spend many weekly hours with their friend groups. It’s hard to make new friends if the ones you have aren’t making good decisions.
As you grow up, you tend to spend less time socializing. Still, the idea of making new social connections is a daunting task. It may immerse you in a subculture that poorly influences you. It’s important to keep an eye out for this.
Education and Career Factors
Additionally, academic failure in late elementary school is a risk factor for developing drug addiction. Children who don’t make school a commitment, might not show up for class. Therefore, they might turn to drugs or alcohol to occupy their time.
In adulthood, this lack of commitment transcends into the workplace. If poor performance stresses you out, you might be more likely to abuse drugs. Resistance to career responsibilities also increases addiction risk.
Taking a Break with Steps to Recovery
If you’re struggling with addiction, you may benefit from distancing yourself from your usual surroundings. Immersing yourself in supportive, positive drug addiction rehab gives you the necessary transitional tools for a healthy lifestyle.
Learning to live well within your community, family, and peer group is important to lasting recovery. At Steps to Recovery in Levittown, PA our intensive outpatient program and outpatient program allow you to get back on your feet. Call us at 267.719.8528 for more answers to, “What are environmental factors?”