Respond to classmates Discussion

I need help with a Psychology question. All explanations and answers will be used to help me learn.

respond to these 2 classmates posts. It is not a critique or a grade but sharing your info and views as well as more knowledge

post 1

Brenda Adams posted Jul 31, 2020 12:37 AM

Substance abuse and substance dependence

We live in a society that is where substance abuse is a severe problem. We have seen a rise in heroin overdoses here locally as well as around the country. At the same time, there are many types of substances of abuse from alcohol and nicotine to heroin laced with fentanyl and many drugs in between. The DSM-5 combined substance abuse and substance disorder in a new category of substance use disorder. (Hooley et al. 2017).

Substance abuse is the harmful use of psychoactive substances, which includes alcohol and illicit drugs. The abuse of these drugs does not necessarily mean you have a substance dependency. Dependency develops when the neurons in the brain adapt to repeated drug use and only function normally in the presence of the drug. The user builds up a tolerance to the substance and has to use an increased amount to obtain the high. The compulsive use of drugs gets to the point where the user has no choice but to continue to use. They have a physical and psychological dependency on the substance. When the user cannot obtain the drug of addiction, they go through withdrawal.

Withdrawal can make one extremely sick. Withdrawal affects the neurotransmitters in the brain as well as the physical effects of vomiting, sweats, anxiety, insomnia, and muscle pain. There are times where withdrawals can include hallucinations, delirium, and manic activity. The symptoms of withdrawal could even be deadly in some cases. (Hooley el at 2017) . Some psychological difficulties are both long-term and short-term memory loss that can lead to depression paranoia, aggression, anxiety, and hallucinations, to name a few. Many people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol are also diagnosed with other mental disorders and visa versa. As we saw last week in our textbook (Hooley et al. 2017) Many people with mental health disorders such as bipolar disorder use drugs to self-medicate, they end up with a dual diagnosis (comorbidity) bipolar and drug abuse disorder.

Hooley, J. M., Nock, M. K., & Butcher, J. N. (2017). Abnormal Psychology (18th ed.). Pearson Education Inc

post 2

Substance Abuse Vs. Substance Dependence

Substance abuse and substance dependence both sound alike but are considered to be two different classifications when it comes to substance-related disorders. With either of the substance issues, psychological effects happen with both. One may become unable to perform their job, neglect or treat their family in a manner that they wouldn’t have before and could even possibly die (Hooley et al., 2020).

“Substance abuse generally involves an excessive use of a substance resulting in (1) potentially hazardous behavior such as driving while intoxicated or (2) continued use despite a persistent social, psychological, occupational, or health problem (Hooley et al., pg 372).” According to our book (Hooley et al., 2020), the most common type of substances that are abused are psychoactive substances. These substances affect the way the mind works and alters its functioning. Some of these substances can be purchases legally, such as alcohol, nicotine, and marijuana. Other substances such as barbiturates, heroin, amphetamines, and prescription medication are all illegal to purchase. (Hooley et al., 2020)

“Substance dependence includes more severe forms of substance use disorders and usually involves a marked physiological need for increasing amounts of a substance to achieve the desired effects. Dependence in these disorders means that an individual will show a tolerance for a drug and/or experience withdrawal symptoms when the drug is unavailable. (Hooley et al., 2020).” If someone has ever had a family member or a friend that had substance dependence, they would tell you that it didn’t start out as a need. Dependence of a substance is built over a period of time. For some, it can take a smaller amount of time than others but it can still develop. (Hooley et al., 2020)

I think that someone can easily slip into the substance dependence from abuse if not careful. If people have addictive personalities, if abuse runs in the family, if they are going through a rough patch in life and do not participate in productive actives; can all be reasons that one may go from substance abuse to substance dependence. I have members in my family that do struggle with alcohol and drug dependence. I have seen first hand how it can destroy and rip families apart. I think it is important to know the warning signs and seek help or help others seek help when things take a turn for the worst.


Hooley, J. M., Nock, M. K., & Butcher, J. N. (2020). Abnormal Psychology (Eighteenth ed.). Boston: Pearson.

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