The Relationship Between Drugs, Alcohol & Mental Health
Andra is an 18-year-old who decided to get involved with “Student Life” to help students realise their worth, make them feel understood and remind them that they are never alone no matter how hard life can get.
We live in a society where it is hard to maintain our sanity when many factors can affect our mental health. Some of us get so tired and sad to the point when we feel like there is no one in the world that can understand us. We get desperate seeking help to be saved and sometimes external influences can interfere in the process, such as drugs and alcohol.
Drugs and alcohol can affect our mood drastically. The changes in our behaviour are the result of changes to our brain which is also the part that controls our mental health. The short-term effects are that they usually make bad feelings go away, increase confidence and happiness and make you feel relaxed. No more heartbreaks, pain or tears; sounds like the perfect escape even if it is for a maximum 2 hours, right?
Let me tell you, it isn’t. The effects of these substances don’t last long, which would automatically make you want more, turning into addiction. The addiction is satisfied by the high rate of “happy hormones” which create euphoria. When the level of these brain chemicals that influence our mood drop too low, it can lead to depression and anxiety over time. Drugs can also make you hear or see things that are not real which is a sign of psychosis. All of the negative effects of alcohol and drugs, can damage the quality of life. It might all start on a Saturday night when you go out after a long week and you view it as a relief, then it turns into a “small habit”, then your happiness depends on it, so you start doing it everyday and before you know it, it’s got you.
We don’t get to choose if we get hurt or not, but we get to choose how we deal with the agony. Take a breath, relax, find new hobbies and opportunities, do things that make you happy because you enjoy them and only thinking about them makes you smile without realising. In the end, our greatest fear and pains will become our strengths.