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Suicide and Drug Addiction



drug addiction and suicide
Does Addiction Increase Your Risk of Suicide?

Drug addicts commit suicide, some intentionally and some by accident. Although depression is a common characteristic of those who commit suicide, not all addicts who commit suicide are depressed. Addiction itself raises the risk of suicide. With little information about suicide and drug addiction, you or a loved one may be at risk and not even know it. Stepping Stone Center for Recovery is a treatment center equipped to treat addiction while helping lower the risk of suicide.

Am I at Risk?

Most people know that suicide and suicidal thoughts are linked with depression. But the next risk factor for suicide is substance abuse, with or without depression. The Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention said that "Addicts come right after those with affective disorders [depression] in rates of suicide."

Our therapists at Stepping Stone can help you because we understand how addiction traps you into thinking death is a way out.

The Journal of Addiction Medicine lists risk factors for self-harm in nondepressed addicts, which include:

  • Younger age
  • Being single or divorced
  • Being unemployed
  • Lower financial status
  • Lacking a college degree
  • Being female
  • Family history of suicide
  • Childhood trauma

Which Substances Are Linked to Suicide?

Drugs and alcohol alter your brain chemistry and can skew your thoughts and perspective. You may love life one minute and the next think that you would be better off dead. Some substances commonly linked to suicide include:

  • Alcohol - Alcohol intoxication increases suicide risk up to 90 times when compared to abstinence.
  • Opiates - Between 8 and 17 of suicides are opiate-dependent.
  • Benzodiazepines - The link between these anti-anxiety medicines and attempted suicide is especially high for young male users not taking antidepressants.
  • Hallucinogens - PCP causes users to become violent or suicidal, making them dangerous to themselves and others.

Accidental Overdose or Suicide?

Addicts die from overdoses, but whether these suicides are intentional or not can be unclear. According to the Journal of Crisis Intervention, some addicts overdose accidentally, either because they have lowered tolerance levels after a period of abstinence or because they do not know the quality and purity of the substances. You risk your life each time you use drugs, even if you believe that you have it under control. Alcohol will cause physical damage and could also lead to death.  Alcohol and drug addiction is not a game and you need help to stop.

Getting Help

It’s never too late to get help. You don’t have to end up a casualty of drug and alcohol addiction. If you are an addict and have any of the risks listed above, find out about detox treatment and drug and alcohol rehab as soon as possible.

Get substance abuse treatment today!
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