You’ve probably heard someone say that they have an addictive personality. If you were confused by what they meant, never fear because a new study had nailed down what exactly that means. The study was conducted in order to examine how best to prevent adolescents from experimenting with alcohol. Basically, the researchers were able to isolate four personality traits which play a major role in a person becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol. It’s not to say that only people with the following personality traits will become drug addicts, far from it in fact. However, those who identify with the traits were more likely to develop substance abuse issues. It’s important for people who have a problem with drugs or alcohol to get help from an addiction treatment facility as soon as possible.
The first personality trait which was linked to substance abuse was people who feel helpless. This is a broad category because people can feel helpless for a variety of different reasons. It could be an issue with a family member or friend. It could stem from work or a relationship. Regardless of what causes these feelings of helplessness, people all seem to gravitate towards having a few drinks to calm down a little bit. Eventually those couple of drinks turn into a lot more and before you know it, you have a serious problem with alcohol. Helplessness and depression are ugly cousins and can both factor into a person’s drinking.
Being impulsive is another personality trait which can lead to substance abuse issues. Impulsivity means that you act before you think. This is very common when it comes to food. Drinking is another aspect where being impulsive is detrimental. Someone may decide to start drinking on an impulse before thinking about the consequences. They may have work or school early the next morning but they act first rather than thinking. Being impulsive can also be a sign of attention disorders such as ADHD.
Anxiety is another trait which can drive someone to drink. It’s completely natural to worry, everyone does it. However, when worrying grows to consume your every waking moment, people often turn to drinking in order to control their emotions. Or rather, achieve the allusion of control. Someone’s anxiety may grow less when they drink, but it often comes back even stronger when they sober up. This can lead to someone drinking more and more as a form of escape.
Thrill-seeking is the fourth and final personality trait associated with substance abuse. It’s certainly fun to drink, ask any college student. However, those who drink are seeking to have new experiences and the use the alcohol as the fuel to do so. Drinking is initially enticing because it is illegal to do so until you are 21 years old. Young adults who drink before coming of age do so in part because it’s against the rules. They associate drinking as a thrilling activity even after turning 21. If you or someone you know struggles with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, contact the Alcoholism Treatment Helpline in Elizabeth, NJ right away.