The American Psychiatric Association claims that whether or not someone will become a future addict is determined by a genetic predisposition that people are born with. This precursor is probably as high as 60% responsible. Further, those with a natural parent that suffered from addiction are eight times more likely to become an addict too.
The reason for this is that genetically, this is part of a person’s brain wiring. This does not have to become their destiny and by no means are they doomed to succumb to addiction but it does mean that in the right environment, they have a higher chance. It is like a tornado warning, it doesn’t mean for certain that a tornado will strike but the atmosphere is right for one to develop. The right atmosphere is created with environment. So, those who are raised around drug or alcohol addiction or in a climate that doesn’t fully reject this are at a higher risk.
Addiction Can Come From Your Parents
People need to remember that addiction is a chronic disease just like diabetes, high blood pressure, or cardiovascular disease. If a parent has one or more of these diseases then their children are also at an increased risk of getting it too. If someone grows up knowing that they are susceptible to one of these chronic diseases they would take preventative measures to avoid it. This is what the families of someone with an addiction should do too. Risk reduction is the best way to combat this problem. The environment needs to be controlled to reduce the risks.
The genetic link is not exclusive for parents only. People have to check back generations to grandparents and other family members that may have been addicts because this still puts people at an increased risk. Then, from the beginning prevention must be taught. This is done with more educational programs for at risk children at the earliest chance possible teaching them that they are at risk and also teaching them viable alternatives to getting involved with drugs and alcohol.