Drug Rehabilitation Blog

Addiction Among the Wealthy

What Determines How Quickly A Person Becomes Addicted To A Substance?

Some people may choose to experiment with addictive substances, thinking they can quit before they become addicted. However, several factors determine how quickly you can become addicted to a substance.


Whether or not you will become addicted to a substance is about 50% determined by your genetics. What this means is that some people are predisposed to addiction and need to watch out for warning signs and risk factors in their lives. These people may become addicted to a substance more quickly than those who are not predisposed. Even if there is no genetic history of addiction in your family, you should still be aware of the other factors below, because you could still be at risk for addiction.

Life Conditions

If you are going through a difficult period in your life, you may be more susceptible to drug or alcohol addiction. When your mental health is under stress, you may fail to recognize the beginnings of addiction or be unable to stop it. Substance abuse can become a crutch that props up a life that you’re unhappy with. Stress or loneliness can also fuel drug addiction to make it more appealing.

Unhealthy Lifestyle

People with unhealthy diets and lifestyles may also become addicted more quickly. When your body is not healthy, the cocktail of chemicals you produce will be unbalanced. Unbalanced chemicals in your system can lead to mental health conditions that foster substance abuse.

Mental Illness

Any known mental illness is a big concern for drug addiction. The person may have some underlying illnesses, such as an addictive personality or depression, that can fuel substance abuse. A mentally ill person may also not realize that they are going further and further into their addiction.

Addicted to a Substance Previously

Unfortunately, using drugs rewires your brain. These materials work by activating the reward centers in your brain and triggering them at a higher level than you would normally experience in daily life. But when you do this, your brain becomes more tolerant to stimulation in the reward center. If you are a previous drug or alcohol abuser, your reward center is already wired to crave intense stimulation; starting to use a new substance is a recipe for quick addiction.


Alcoholism is a good predictor of a person who will become addicted to a new substance quickly. Often, alcoholics already have an addictive personality that feeds well into substance addiction.


Pressure from other people can also affect how quickly a person becomes addicted to a substance. On their own, they may have only tried it once and been fine. But with pressure to repeatedly use the substances, it becomes more likely that the body will start to become addicted.

The best scenario is to avoid substance abuse altogether. Addiction can be a rapid process that ‘s hard to reverse once started. If you are in the beginning stages of addiction, it’s important to get help right away; don’t let the problem escalate into a full-blown and life-altering addiction.


  • Angie

    Addiction is a tough thing to deal with. I have personally seen people try to deal with alcoholism all by themselves, and they have failed. The end result is life just falling down on them. Wife leaving, threatening to never let them see their son again, trouble at work, almost losing their job. In the end it all came down to not getting help when they were in the beginning stages of their addiction, and not continuing with a good after care program to help them stay on track through all of this. Through all of this, they finally reached a point of realizing that help was needed, and his wife checked him into a rehab program that is now going to help him get to the bottom of the reason for his addiction, get him clean and sober and help him with the after-care he needs! Seek help if you feel like you are dependent on any kind of substance!

  • Amanda

    I loved this blog. A lot of the time people try to isolate one reason for something to blanket across the masses. However just like anything in life there is more than one to have something to occur. I thought it was an interesting view on the different variables that can occur or create a more a more addictive situation for a person. This a great read to give people some predict on what to look for with people that could have an addiction problem.

  • Jonathan

    It is interesting how much of a vital role genetics takes place in determining your addiction level and there is really no way of determining how addicted you can get without trying it, seems to be too big of a risk and gamble to take.

    This article pushes adversely, unintentionally, to just live a healthy lifestyle. Because the healthier your body is through eating and exercise, the less susceptible it is too toxic substances such as drugs and alcohol.

    It’s rather amazing and it all makes sense now why people that are constantly getting high experience little or no fun from an activity that most people would find very enjoyable. This point should be spread more often as when you look at it, it would appeal to more people as a reason why to stay off drugs and alcohol and to have alcohol maybe, if at all, on a social level and not abusive.

  • carcol

    I would never have through that genetics would have anything to do with addiction. That’s so weird that you can be carrying around and addictive gene and you wouldn’t even know it unless you decided to try taking drugs and all of a sudden found yourself addicted after only a couple of times. These people really need to get into a rehab program as soon as possible seeing they are so susceptible to addiction. They need the professional help to get them through.

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