Effects of drugs on a family and information about Drug Abuse:

Effects of drugs on a family and information about Drug Abuse:

Effects of Alcohol and Drug Abuse on the Family:

1.Instability within the family system.

People suffering from addiction are a lot of times unreliable and can’t be counted on to do what they say. Other family members are left to pick up the slack when the addict does not attend to his or her responsibilities. This causes conflict and instability within families, as family members are continuously let down or can never predict the addict’s behaviour.

2.Mistrust, lying and stealing.

Once addiction has taken hold people may turn to lying and stealing to hide and support their drug abuse. This behaviour creates resentment, mistrust, and turmoil within relationships in the family.

3.Financial distress.

Alcohol and drug abuse can lead to problems at work, including decreased productivity, missed work and job loss. Addiction creates a financial burden that may cause families to lose their home, or have difficulty providing basic needs such as food and healthcare for their children. The addict may rely on financial support from other family members which further strains relationships.

4. Conflict amongst family members.

Addiction can lead to negativism, where all the communication taking place amongst the addict and family members is negative. Anger and resentment can cause family members to lash out at one another.

5. Shame and denial.

When one-member experiences addiction, often the whole family will suffer from shame and denial. Families may work hard to hide the consequences of addiction and develop elaborate systems of denial that there is any problem at all.

Effects of Parental Drug Abuse on Children.

Alcohol and drug abuse affects intimate relationships in specific ways, often with one or both partners exhibiting signs of co-dependency. Co-dependency was first observed in partners of alcoholics who were not alcoholics themselves.

Co-dependency refers to a pattern in relationships where one person puts the needs of the other in front of their own. When addiction is present, the addict’s partner may fall into the role of caretaker and display symptoms of co-dependency. When this relationship pattern is present both individuals suffer and both often need treatment in order to get better.


– “The average age of experimentation in South Africa is 12 – and decreasing. While the age of patients undergoing treatment in Gauteng ranged from 9 to 82, the proportion of patients aged 10 to 19 increased to 29 per cent, according to the South African Community Epidemiology Network on Drug Use report” –  March 2017

– South Africa is among the top 10 narcotics and alcohol abusers in the world – twice that of the world norm.

– At least 15 per cent of South Africans have a drug problem and this number is expected to rise.

– Children who have one alcoholic parent have a 60 per cent chance of becoming one. This percentage rises to 80 per cent if both parents are alcoholics

– 50 per cent of Grade 11 learners admitted that they have used alcohol in the last year

– School kids who use alcohol or drugs are three times more involved with violent crimes

– 31 per cent of school learners drink socially

– 60 per cent of Grade 8-11 learners in Cape schools that misuse alcohol had to repeat their grade

– By the age of 18 more than 60 per cent of teenagers has become drunk. 30 per cent had used school time or work time to drink


Signs of Drug use:

Young people with drug problems may act differently than they used to. They may, for example:

– isolate themselves

– lose interest in their favourite things

– poor hygiene, not bathing, changing clothes, or brushing their teeth

– be either really tired and sad or very energetic

– talk fast or say things that do not make sense

– may be nervous or anxious

– mood swings – quickly change between feeling bad and feeling good

– sleep at strange hours

– eat a lot more or a lot less than usual

– poor relationships

– miss appointments or social gatherings

– bunk school or work

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