The Most Addictive Drugs

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It seems as though most addictive substances come in varying degrees of intensity. While all drugs have potential for misuse, some are naturally far more addictive than the rest. Also, most highly addictive drugs require professional assistance and share many commonalities with other highly addictive substances. Some examples of highly addictive substances include alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, opiate drugs, etc. There are many different ways to become addicted to any of these substances, but the root causes of addiction remain the same.

An obvious danger of any of the above mentioned addictive substances is the possibility of physical dependency. Without strong self-discipline, people find it nearly impossible to quit even after receiving counseling and help. This fact leads many to seek out drugs as a “quick fix,” a temporary means to an end-of-life situation. However, if left unchecked, drug addiction can result in serious health consequences, including heart disease, respiratory failure, etc. For this reason, it is vitally important that those who use drugs be aware of the most addictive drugs and treat them as such.

Psychological Therapy

It is often better to treat drug addiction with psychological therapy. In-patient therapy can be extremely helpful because of its structure. Counseling professionals can help a person make better choices and learn how to better manage their emotions and stresses, and can teach patients how to get their problems under control and function without the use of substances. Once in a drug treatment center, patients receive intensive in-service, group and individual therapy to combat feelings of isolation and stress due to their drug of choice, as well as to cope with everyday stresses and complications.

The use of prescription medications can often lead to the symptoms of withdrawal being so severe that it will feel like the end of the world. Fortunately, there are many different treatment options available. These include, but are not limited to, prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, detoxification, and counseling. There is no one solution for every single person with prescription drug addiction issues. However, treatment options are available at Neworld Detox Centre to help loved ones recover from the damaging effects of drug abuse.

Most scientists agree that the brain’s reward system plays a major role in the development of drug abuse and addiction. Brain scans have shown that those who abuse drugs show regions in the brain that become activated when drug-related cues are encountered. These brain circuits eventually become over-stimulated, which causes a euphoric state. Over time, repeated use of the same drugs produces a state of tolerance in which the user is no longer capable of experiencing the same “high” when they ingest higher doses of the drug. Ultimately, they must downsize or quit the substance altogether in order to survive without causing harm to themselves or others.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse recognizes twelve major classes of drugs for which there is evidence of addiction:

  • cocaine,
  • crack-cocaine,
  • marijuana,
  • heroin,
  • methamphetamine,
  • amphetamines,
  • ecstasy,
  • opioids,
  • barbiturates,
  • inhalants,
  • snuff, and
  • cigarette tobacco.


Cocaine is probably the most common of the addictive substances identified by the NIDA. It is also the most popularly used in America, with users numbering in the tens of millions. It can be purchased almost anywhere legally, including at stores, street corners, restaurants, hospitals, and other businesses. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, cocaine addicts experience two unique types of neurotransmitters in the brain: the substance P, which is related to dopamine, and norepinephrine, which is related to epinephrine. Cocaine causes a euphoric state when its use is taken, but it also causes the release of a substance called dopamine, which causes a sense of happiness and well-being.


Methamphetamine is another highly-abused drug that is closely related to cocaine. Like cocaine, it can be purchased virtually anywhere, both illegal and legal, and it is often abused because of the fast feeling of happiness it produces (as well as because of the powerful stimulant it contains). When taken in small doses, methamphetamine produces a similar “high” as cocaine, but in much lower quantities. Meth users usually “group” together to take several hits rather quickly in order to “get through” the day.


Nicotine is a very tricky drug to address. Long-term cigarette smoking has been proven to severely damage the circulatory system, and smokers who try to quit may find their nicotine addiction returning as soon as they quit. Many researchers feel that nicotine is more addicted to people who have certain personality characteristics–such as those who score high on neuroticism or are more introverted.