There is hardly anyone who is unaware of the severe consequences drugs have on a person ‒ both on his or her body and psychology‒ yet the number of drug addicted people is rising at an alarming rate. The reasons for that should be found in a person itself and its motives to use drugs, as well as in a way society chooses to deal with this acute problem.
There are several possible reasons why a person decides to use drugs knowing that it is dangerous. Firstly, this might be due to an individual’s difficult emotional state, such as anxiety or depression. Nowadays, when the life is getting more and more stressful, people often resort to drugs to make their life easier, even if just for a short period of time. Drug intoxication might as well be a way to cope with bad memories. Secondly, a person might see others having fun while being intoxicated, and conclude that drugs can make their lives more interesting, too. There is also boredom which leads to teens’ and young adults’ drug addiction. All mentioned above means that people use drugs being well aware of the consequences, but sometimes a person become addicted “accidentally”, for example, when taking pain killers while treating a serious injury. In this case, prescribed drugs result in dependency.
It is also known that people with a family history of drug abuse are more likely to become addicted. Thus, a family, culture and the society plays a major role in an individual’s choice. This is logical, because all of them shape person’s character and lifestyle. For instance, if there is a lack of the facilities for youth, they have more free time than needed and use drugs to escape boredom. Or, if a society has a strong religious commitment, there is a chance people will not use drugs because their religion forbids them to. However, these are only some of the reasons why people take or do not take drugs, and it does not mean that an individual who, for example, believes in God, will never become drug addicted.
The two ways in which the society suggests to cope with drug addiction are the harm reduction and abstinence. In my opinion, the first model is more appropriate since it helps minimize the risks for other people. For example, giving new syringes in exchange for the used ones can help protect the users from HIV, and, as the result, keep it from further spreading. Apart from that, as it has already been mentioned, the reasons why people use drugs vary greatly, and simply taking away a coping mechanism cannot resolve the issue. Therefore, I regard the harm reduction model as prior to the abstinence-based medical one.