Mark Scruggs, Trial Attorney
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The apple doesn't fall far from the tree: Drug abuse and heredity

What makes you choose a particular path in life while someone else who grew up and works in the same Tennessee area as you chooses another? It would likely take a long time to explore possible answers to that question. However, studies show that heredity often has a lot to do with personality, propensity toward certain diseases, and even the likelihood of certain types of behavior. If your family seems to have a few members who struggle with drug addiction, you may want to beware the risks.

Using drugs is definitely no small matter, whether they are prescription medications or illegal drugs bought on the street. Many prescription drugs (such as those provided to alleviate chronic pain or ease symptoms of other conditions) are strong narcotics that are extremely addictive. If your family is prone to drug addiction, you may want to steer clear of such drugs. There are physical, mental and sometimes even legal repercussions involved in misuse of drugs of any kind.

How to know if you're prone to drug addiction

Predisposition by genetics accounts for more than half, and possibly up to 75 percent, of all drug addiction risks. In addition to your DNA, however, you may want to keep these other risk factors in mind:

External influence: You've likely heard it said that people are merely products of their environments. Where potential drug addiction is concerned, there is truth to that statement. Your surroundings and how others have treated you play key roles toward your likelihood to avoid or participate in addictive drug use. Peer pressure, emotional, physical and sexual abuse, and even poverty are some of the most common external influences that may make you prone to drug addiction.

How your brain is wired: While human brains share many similarities, yours might be wired a bit differently than someone else's. Certain brain characteristics can increase your risk for drug addiction.

Mental health condition: If you suffer from depression, are impulsive or struggle with some type of mental or personality disorder, you are more likely to abuse drugs than someone who does not have any of these conditions. 

Age: If you gave in to peer pressure to try drugs or alcohol at an early age, you may be at great risk for drug addiction as an adult.

If any of these risk factors apply to you, you may want to research further and reach out for support to help you avoid drug-related problems. Drug addiction is often a downward spiral that leads to other behavior you might not otherwise engage in were it not for your addiction. For instance, you are more likely to drive while impaired than someone who is not addicted to drugs. If you are currently facing legal trouble because of drugs, you are not alone in your struggle.

Many Tennessee residents have endured similar experiences. Some have gone on to seek rehabilitation for their drug problems. Others have successfully avoided convictions by relying on strong defense representation in court. Knowing what your rights are and where to turn for help can be invaluable for getting your life back on track.

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Mark Scruggs, Trial Attorney
95 White Bridge Rd. Ste 508
Nashville, TN 37205

Phone: 615-988-4128
Fax: 615-356-6954
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