The lives of millions of children are affected by substance abuse disorders. These children are at an increased risk of being abused or neglected, as well as at risk of not properly developing physically during pregnancy because the mother is a substance abuser. A safe environment, accompanied by positive relationships, is essential for the normal emotional development of children.
Substance abuse and drug addiction coming from the parents have a negative impact on children’s physical and emotional development and can cause the home environment to become chaotic and unsafe, leading to dramatic consequences regarding the mental state of the children. The physical and emotional needs of children are a priority, reason why parents should learn how to cope with addiction and get rid of it in the shortest time possible.
The immediate effects
Identifying the effects of drugs and alcohol on the fetus has been a challenge for researchers. Substance abusers often tend not to take care of the baby properly after giving birth (for example, lack of prenatal care, poor nutrition, violence, lack of support, poverty) that can significantly contribute to problem solving and birth. Drug addiction can affect the career of a person which leads to the lack of money to raise a child as supposed to.
The relationship between drug misuse and maltreatment of the child is incontestable. Many children live with at least one parent who consumed or was dependent of drugs or other substances. Children whose parents are addicted are nearly three times more likely to be abused, and are four times more likely to be neglected than children whose parents are not addicts.
Addictions often affect the way people live, including how they work and interact with others, such as the relationship between parents and children. Studies suggest that addicts affect parents’ priorities and influence parental choices of discipline. In addition, affected families are often confronted with a wide range of issues, including other mental illnesses, domestic violence, poverty and high levels of stress, which are also associated with ill-treatment for children.
Treatment is sometimes an issue
Physical, emotional, social problems that usually occur in addiction will aggravate in the future, unless they are treated. If left untreated, addiction can cause premature death through overdose or suicide, through organic complications involving the failure of the brain, liver, heart and many other organs. The same effects can be transmitted to the baby. The baby will also be a substance addict when born if the consumption is not stopped on time.
Treatment refusal is a long-standing issue. People who are addicted to a substance often engage in developing strategies to hide the problem while the substance affects their lives, as admitting that addiction is present is there is the first step to overcoming it. Many people refuse medication for treating addiction and they also avoid rehabs. Trying holistic rehabs instead seems to work better than the traditional methods of coping with this disease. It is paramount to stop consuming substances before pregnancy to avoid all risks involved.