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Can Boredom Lead to a Drug Addiction?

by Nick

Substance use disorder can have a wide range of causes. Some people with addictions face underlying traumas, mental illness, genetic factors or environmental influences. Many cases of substance use disorder have multiple causes. In some situations, boredom contributes to addiction. Boredom may not be the sole factor behind a person’s addiction, but it has a link to other potential causes.

Teen Drug Addiction — A Result of Boredom?

When we discuss substance use disorder in teenagers, the topic of boredom often comes up. Many people attribute addiction during the teenage years to boredom. However, substance use disorder involves multiple factors that impact one another, with boredom counting as just one of them. Teenagers can develop substance use disorder as a result of:

  • Lack of parental supervision or support
  • Drug availability at schools
  • Poverty in the community
  • Academic issues

As you can see, many of these factors have a connection to boredom. For example, if a teenager’s parents don’t supervise or support them, they may have a higher tendency to use drugs when bored. Teenagers who live in poorer communities may have limited access to after-school activities as well. Fortunately, managing boredom can help a teenager stay drug-free.

Additional Factors Behind Substance Use Disorders

Plenty of factors besides the ones that affect teens can contribute to substance use disorder. As a complex condition, addiction can have a variety of reasons for occurring. These issues impact people of all ages:

  • Early drug use: When someone uses drugs at a younger age, they have a higher chance of developing an addiction.
  • Method of use: Smoking and injection cause intense but short-lasting highs that can tempt some people to use more.
  • Mental illness: The challenges brought by mental health disorders like depression and ADHD can make someone feel more tempted to use drugs.
  • Genetics: A family history of addiction can raise your risk of developing substance use disorder.

People from any background can get addicted to a substance. While the above factors and more raise someone’s risk of substance use disorder, everyone has a different experience.

Managing Boredom as a Part of Recovery

When someone recovers from a substance use disorder, managing boredom can help them reduce their risk of relapse. People who ended up committing most of their time to drugs need new activities to fill their new free time. They may feel discouraged to reach out to old friends and isolated from their former social group. Recovering patients who also have mental health disorders can have even more feelings of boredom and disinterest.

Reclaiming old activities or finding new ones can promote a successful path to recovery. A new hobby can help you enjoy your new free time and could even let you discover new passions in life. In addition, building new social circles will allow you to get social and emotional support as you work toward a drug-free life.

Let Health Care Resource Centers Help

If you or someone you love has opioid use disorder, HCRC can help. Schedule an appointment today by messaging our team online or calling us at 866-758-7769.

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