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Is Poverty a Contributing Factor to Addiction?


Poverty food line

Economic status has been rumored to be one of the causes of addiction.  There are many stereotypes out there that claim only poor people are drug users, but addiction affects all walks of life.  It does not discriminate against economic classes, nor does it care about race, religion, or gender.

Although poverty does not directly contribute to addiction, many people who are impoverished have the propensity to turn towards illicit drugs for several reasons.  Living in poverty can be quite stressful.  It can be difficult to find a job, and if you do, it barely pays the bills.  Typically, low income areas have high levels of crime, and living in constant fear of being victimized is terrifying and exhausting.  Many people living in impoverished areas do not have access to health care, which can be one of the main reasons they might turn towards drugs and alcohol.  Being poor can cause a vast amount of anxiety, so an individual might use substances to ease stress.  If a person is in pain, they may not be able to afford to see a doctor, so they buy illegal substances off the street that will help.  Addicts use substances to self-medicate for the issues they cannot or do not want to face.  Impoverished areas have a high level of black market substance accessibility.  In other words, there is an equal amount of supply and demand in most poor areas.     

Addiction has a greater link to poverty when it precedes it.  Addiction causes individuals to make poor life decisions, which can result in a downward spiral.  The deeper your addiction is, the more negligent life decisions you make.  When a person is chemically dependent on a substance to function, priorities become mixed up.  You decide not to pay your phone bill, which may later exacerbate to rent delinquency.  All of your money may seem like it’s disappearing into the pipe or bottle, but it’s irrelevant.  You continue to use, which results in potential homelessness or inability to afford a decent place to live.  

The answer to recovery is Simple. Our multi-tiered program is designed to help your loved one find success on a new path in life through school, work, and meaningful volunteering. Structured for progress, clients at Simple Recovery transition seamlessly through each phase of their recovery. Call us today for information: 888-743-0490