Are Introverts More Susceptible to Substance Abuse?

cognitivesciencesA team of researchers led by Dr. Nora Volkow of the National Institude on Drug Abuse (NIDA) recently contucted a study seeking links to personality traits, brain conditions and substance use disorders. The differences between being introverted vs. extroverted and how the associated moods can affect drug abuse was specifically examined.

Fellow researcher Dr. Sergi Ferré recently exclaimed that people who are extroverted more often tend to experience more positive thoughts. The flip side being that introverts have more negative thoughts and emotions, such as anxiety and depression, which therefore make them more susceptible to heavier alcohol and drug use.

Their theories also include genetic factors and brain system influencers of these personality traits, with the idea of being able to more accurately predicts one’s vulnerability or resilience to developing a problem with drugs or alcohol at some point in their lives.

Of course there is no hard and fast rule that means if someone is introverted they will become an addict, or that a more outgoing person won’t become one, but it is helpful to know what the additional risk factors in life are and how to better prevent addiction from occurring.

More details of the study were published in the journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences.

About Blake Nichols

Blake Nichols is the Director of Operations at Desert Cove Recovery. Blake battled his own addiction to drugs and alcohol and was given the gift of recovery at the age of 23. Since 2008, Blake has dedicated his life and career to the field of addiction. He has experience in all aspects of addiction treatment including direct care, admissions, marketing, and administration.
Blake feels that the greatest reward of working in the recovery field is being part of the transformation that a person goes through from the time they arrive and begin treatment, through the hard work and the Miracle of recovery, and ultimately the change into a confident and capable person ready to carry the message of recovery.
"My career has focused on serving others. I have accepted ownership of my responsibilities as that is the key to working at the highest level of professionalism. I have worked to be positive and offer solution-based suggestions in my work and personal life."