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School-Induced Stress and Addiction

School-Induced Stress and AddictionThough any person can develop an addiction at any time, those that are under high stress may be more likely to turn to drugs or alcohol. Drug abuse can quickly turn into addiction, resulting in even greater stress. Students are part of this group of people that may be most likely to undergo such stressors.

The Effects of Academic Stress

High school students are one population that is likely to face high amounts of stress. Common high school stressors include schoolwork and extracurricular activities. These two stressors have the potential to take up vast amounts of time, leaving students little time to relax. In the later years of high school, stress can also arise in the process of applying to college or seeking a job.

For college students, academic stress can reach even greater heights. When in college, students may also be forced to adapt to new levels of independence. The collegiate style of learning can be incredibly different and can be greatly stressful. In addition, many college students hold part-time or full-time jobs when they are not in class. This not only uses up valuable study time, but also uses up time that could otherwise be spent relaxing. To add to the stress of classes, college students must begin building their resume and becoming involved in professional organizations.

When academic stress reaches a certain level, some students find that they will do absolutely anything to escape the way they are feeling. In too many cases, this results in experimentation with drugs or alcohol. Though substances like these provide temporary relief, they result in more damage in the long-term.

Commonly Abused Drugs by Students

Some students who are overwhelmed with the stress of school will turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to escape their stress. They may use central nervous system (CNS) depressants in order to relax. Some of the commonly used CNS depressants include alcohol, opioid painkillers, benzodiazepines, and barbiturates. All of these substances have a high potential for the development of addiction. Unfortunately, addiction can interfere greatly with academics and lead to even greater stress.

In other cases, highly stressed students may use certain stimulant medications to improve their school performance and reduce stress as a result. Some of the commonly used stimulants include Adderall and Ritalin. These drugs are prescribed to treat disorders like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. Students tend to abuse these drugs as a way of increasing energy and focus as well as decreasing appetite. In these ways, Adderall and Ritalin are abused to gain an academic advantage. According to the 2006 and 2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), full-time college students between the ages of 18 and 22 were two times more likely to use Adderall for non-medical purposes as those who were not in college.

Get Help for Drug or Alcohol Addiction

The abuse of drugs or alcohol can lead to serious health consequences and addiction. If you or someone you know has developed an addiction, it is important to seek appropriate treatment. Therefore, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have about treatment for drug and alcohol addiction.

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