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Drug abuse is defined as the habitual use of licit or illicit substances to the point where the abuse significantly harms a person’s health or interferes with his or her social or economic functioning. Furthermore, anyone who has lost control over their drug use is termed a chronic drug abuser.

Many people who struggle with drug addiction often struggle with mental health difficulties; drug usage is frequently an attempt by a person to “self medicate” an emotional or mental problem that has afflicted them. Drug misuse has been proven in studies to hasten the onset of mental disorders.

A person suffering from drug addiction may not even be aware that they have a mental condition. They may be self-medicating through drug usage without even realising it.

People who use drugs and have a mental disorder may be resistant to therapy and recovery because they deny the problem when challenged with their habits. Often, drug treatment intervention is essential to address the drug behaviour and the issues it causes, and the individual is presented with realities they cannot ignore. The initial step of treating drug misuse is frequently only a sign of a larger, deeper, underlying problem.


What exactly is a drug, and what exactly is drug abuse? Drugs are compounds that interact with our biological system to alter physiological and biomedical processes. Psychoactive chemicals (Burns, 1988) are drugs that have a considerable effect on the brain and psychological functioning, resulting in effects such as drowsiness, stimulation, or a change in mood or behaviour.

The phenomenon of drug abuse is defined as the maladaptive use of such substances, such as when they are medically necessary, when they are used against legal prohibition, or when there is a maladaptive or excessive use of socially acceptable drugs (e.g. alcoholic, kolanut), resulting in significant impairment in personal, social, and occupational functioning (Odejide and Morekinyo, 2004).

Why Do Some People Get a Problem While Others Don’t?

Substance use disorder is a disease that can affect anyone, whether they are rich or poor, male or female, employed or jobless, young or elderly, or of any race or ethnicity.

Nobody knows for certain what causes addiction, although the likelihood of developing a substance use problem is influenced in part by genetics–biological features passed down through families. The surroundings, psychological qualities, and stress level of a person all play important roles in the use of alcohol or drugs.

Researchers discovered that long-term drug use alters the brain in significant and long-lasting ways. It’s as if a switch in the brain was flipped at some point. This point varies from person to person, but when this switch is activated, the person crosses an invisible boundary and becomes reliant on the substance.

People who begin taking drugs or alcohol at a young age are more likely to cross the line and become dependent. These brain alterations last long after a person quits using drugs or drinking alcohol. Even if a member of your family is ill, it does not excuse the nasty behaviour that often goes along with it. Your loved one is not to blame for having a sickness, but he or she must seek treatment.

What are the Signs of a Substance Abuse Disorder?

One of the most telling symptoms of substance abuse or dependency is the ongoing use of drugs or alcohol after experiencing the numerous negative repercussions of extensive drug or alcohol use. Frequently, a person will blame other people or situations for his or her problem rather than admitting that the difficulties are the result of drug or alcohol usage.

For example, your partner may assume he was fired from jobs because his superiors didn’t know how to run a firm, and he may even blame you. People suffering from this condition may assume that they drink normally or that “everyone takes drugs.” These false beliefs are referred to as denial, and denial is a symptom of the condition.

People with substance use disorders are frequently portrayed in the media as unemployed, unproductive, criminals, and homeless. Many people who are addicted to alcohol or drugs, on the other hand, do not fit this stereotype; they work and live with their families.

Tolerance is another essential indication of a substance use problem. To get high, a person will need increasing amounts of alcohol or narcotics.

Craving: A person has a strong need, want, or need to use alcohol or drugs, will use alcohol or drugs despite negative consequences, and will become nervous and angry if he or she is unable to use them. A fundamental sign of addiction is craving.

Loss of Control: A person will frequently drink more alcohol or take more drugs than he or she intended, or may use drugs at an unplanned time or place. A person may also try and fail to lessen or quit drinking or using drugs at times.

Over the last two decades, researchers have attempted to identify the origins and paths of drug abuse–how the problem begins and progresses. Many characteristics have been identified that assist distinguish those who are more likely to abuse drugs from those who are less likely to abuse drugs.

Factors linked with a higher risk of drug misuse are referred to as “risk” factors, while those associated with a lower risk of abuse are referred to as “protective” ones. However, the majority of people who are at risk of drug misuse do not begin taking drugs or become addicted to them.

Furthermore, what is a risk factor for one individual may not be for another. Gender can also influence how a person reacts to a risk factor. According to a researcher on family connections, adolescent girls respond positively to parental support and punishment, whereas adolescent boys may respond negatively.

According to research on early risk behaviours in the school context, the leading causes of poor peer interactions are violent behaviour in boys and learning issues in girls. Because of these poor interactions, the majority of individuals at risk for drug misuse do not begin taking drugs or get addicted.

Furthermore, what is a risk factor for one individual may not be for another. Gender can also influence how a person reacts to risk factors. According to research on family connections, adolescent girls respond positively to parental support and dispelling, whereas adolescent girls occasionally respond badly to parental support and discipline.

According to research on early risk behaviours in the school context, the leading causes of poor peer interactions are violent behaviour in boys and learning issues in girls. Poor relationships can lead to social rejection, a bad educational experience, and harmful habits such as drug usage.

What are the early warning signals of danger that may indicate future drug abuse?

Some risk factors can be identified as early as infancy, and children’s personality features or temperament can put them at a higher risk of subsequent drug usage. Drawn and aggressive guys, for example, frequently demonstrate negative behaviours in relationships with their family, peers, and others in social settings.

If these actions continue, they will almost certainly lead to other dangers. Academic failure, early peer rejection, and later affiliation with deviant peers are some of the hazards associated with adolescent drug misuse.

According to studies, children with low academic achievement and unsuitable social behaviour between the ages of seven (7) and nine(9) are more likely to be associated with substance misuse by the ages of 14-15.

Children’s first encounters are with their families, and they can be favourable or harmful. As a result, variables affecting early development in the family are likely to be the most important. Children are more likely to suffer risk when there is:

Parental or carers’ lack of mutual bonding and nurturing;

Parenting that is ineffective;

A tumultuous home situation.

absence of a meaningful bond with a caring adult; and

A carer who takes drugs, has a mental disease, or engages in criminal behaviour.

These experiences, particularly drug and other substance addiction by parents and other carers, can inhibit family bonding and endanger emotions of security that children require for proper growth.

Other dangers that can drive young individuals to begin consuming drugs include drug availability, drug trafficking patterns, and ideas that drug usage is commonly acceptable.

Addiction to drugs

This is defined as exceeding the recommended dose of a prescribed medicine, such as barbiturates, without medical supervision, or using marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or another irrational substance. Many people also abuse legal substances such as alcohol and nicotine.

Drug misuse is defined as any biological or chemical substance that, when ingested, alters one or more of the body’s processes (WHO 1996).

Drug misuse is a common issue that distracts people of all socioeconomic backgrounds. It happens when a person feels the desire to consume a drug frequently for various reasons.

When a person continues to abuse a drug after substantial difficulties associated with the drug use have occurred, the repercussions can be severe. Dependence is characterised by a compulsion to use a drug in order to feel psychological or physical effects. Tolerance, habituation, and addiction are the three types of drug dependence.


It goes to illustrate that the issue of drug usage is a cosmopolitan one that affects the entire human race. Despite the evident harmful impact on health and social consequences of drug misuse, as well as the social stigma associated with drug use, many people have used it. In Nigeria, the question persists as to why medications are openly supplied and purchased without a doctor’s prescription.

Campaigns about the increasing dangers of drug usage have been carried by the media (television, radio). The major issue of this research is to determine the impact of drug abuse on the mental health of individuals in society. Particularly after carefully and critically investigating the role of drug usage on mental health. This research aims to provide answers to the following questions:

What are the social elements that support drug use among people?

What is the connection between mental health and substance abuse?

Is drug use/abuse the primary cause of deviant behaviour among lunatics in Benin mental hospitals?


The goal of this study was to provide solutions or explanations to the specified research problems. As a result, the purpose of this study is to thoroughly determine the influence of drug misuse on mental health among psychotic patients in a psychiatric hospital in Benin City.

The study also tries to identify high-lighting elements that may encourage drug usage among adolescents. Patient in psychiatric hospital; this could be due to poor socialisation, economic position, and so on. The purpose of this research is also to investigate whether or not there is a link between mental health and drug misuse.

Finally, the research is aimed at explaining and determining that drug addiction is the leading cause of mental illness among psychiatric patients in society.


The following are the research hypotheses that this study seeks to validate:

Is drug misuse a significant influence on youth culture?

Is drug usage encouraged in a teenage culture by the drive to conform?

Is there a link between adolescent culture and drug abuse?

Is drug usage the leading cause of deviant behaviour in persons suffering from mental illness?


The study’s goal is to improve on previous studies on the influence of drug addiction on mental health problems prevalent in psychiatric hospitals in Benin City. And it is believed that the outcomes of this study will go a long way towards advancing perspectives about the nature of drug use among youths and the requirements involved in the formation and membership of a youth subculture.

Finally, it is hoped that the research findings will stimulate and encourage further interest in the study’s research by making it available in a clear and comprehensive statement, recommendations on measures for controlling drug abuse among youths and other members who participate.


It is worth noting that the definition of drug abuse was defined in the context of this study. The sorts, nature, and impact of these drugs or other substances on society at large. Substance misuse is both a cause and a result of being homeless.

The prevalence of substance use among homeless people is estimated to be 20-35 percent; up to 10-20 percent are “dually diagnosed” with another mental health disorder. In the United States, less than one-quarter of those in need of substance abuse treatment obtain it; the realities of homelessness exacerbate structural and interpersonal hurdles to accessing substance misuse therapy.

As a result, while homeless people have a greater need for treatment than the general population, they might anticipate to experience more barriers to receiving it. Individuals with substance use disorders, particularly those who are dual-diagnosed, provide a significant challenge to the substance addiction treatment community; the first barrier is in the engagement process, according to Drake (1991).

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