Between drug and alcohol addiction, which one is more destructive?

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  1. A.A. Zavala profile image81
    A.A. Zavalaposted 12 years ago

    Between drug and alcohol addiction, which one is more destructive?

    What are the emotional, monetary, and generational cost?

  2. BizGenGirl profile image90
    BizGenGirlposted 12 years ago

    When it comes to Drugs and Alcohol, which is the worst addiction of the two? Or are they both the same... read more

  3. ginjill ashberry profile image74
    ginjill ashberryposted 12 years ago

    I like to read others opinions on this topic too..
    My knowledge regarding the two is; both are destructive, depending to the level of addiction, I might be wrong but I think drug addiction destroys faster.

    It is monetarily draining, especially for lower income individuals, this may result in poor and reckless decision made to earn enough money to feed the addiction, which then may effect the psychology of a few generations and both costs suffering not only emotionally but physically to themselves and others around them.

  4. twilanelson profile image60
    twilanelsonposted 12 years ago

    Neither is more destructive than the other.  They are equally destructive.  Either addiction is a tragedy and can kill !  Both can have disastrous effects on one's health, lifestyle, family and tranquility.

  5. profile image0
    Sunnie Dayposted 12 years ago

    Both are really bad as they steal ones very life. I think only the one who has had to live with one or the other could truly judge fairly..For me it is drugs as I have seen what they do to my son in the past..

  6. Wayne Brown profile image81
    Wayne Brownposted 12 years ago

    I think it varies with the individual.  Alcohol really turns some people upside down and they drink until they lose consciousness and remember little of what happens to them or what they did to others in the process.  Drugs appear to be more destructive in that they seem to incapacitate the user more quickly than alcohol.  I have heard people described as "functioning alcoholics" but I am not sure that is true of hard drug users...they quickly cease to function. WB

  7. nancyme profile image61
    nancymeposted 12 years ago

    I'd say drugs. I've lost one of my best friend to drugs and it's really sad. It left a deep scar on his family and friends. The emotional trauma is something deep and harsh which is difficult to let out in words. It's just felt. We all miss him and the great times we had.

  8. JGoul profile image59
    JGoulposted 12 years ago

    If you're talking about hard, addictive drugs like heroin or cocaine, drugs are clearly more destructive.  Opiate addiction (heroin is a commonly abused opiate), in particular, is positively devastating.  All true addictions rewire your brain, but opiate addiction does so in ways that are often irreversible.  Some opiate addicts have to remain on methadone treatments for their entire lives. 

    Another thing to remember is that many people we term alcoholics are not physically addicted to alcohol to the same degree as those addicted to other drugs.  I've known quite a few people who have satisfied the criteria for alcoholism at one point or another (including myself) who simply stopped or cut back drastically for an extended period, without significant difficulty.  You can't say the same for heroin or crack addicts.

  9. Kim_L profile image59
    Kim_Lposted 12 years ago

    Both are destructive but in two different ways. Depending on the type of drug and the length of the addiction will set the boundaries of how destructive the person can actually become financially, emotionally and even physically. 
    In my experiences, dealing with both is just as tough in relationships as well as, mental health facilities. 

    In addition, any additional mental problems a person carries can deeply affect the dependency of either alcohol or drugs. ie: ADD, ADHD, Bi-Polar, Depression etc.

    The downside to alcohol however, is its availability in stores, shopping centers and restaurants. Therefore many times, it is much more difficult for an alcoholic to sober up, where as with a person that has an addiction to drugs, can move to an entirely new location and increase their chances of sobering up since it may be more difficult to locate their drugs of choice.

  10. profile image53
    CarolineAUposted 12 years ago

    I live in an area full of both, and for me it seems that drugs are the more destructive. An addict is a habit masquerading as a human being, who will lie, cheat, steal, attack and kill for a fix. They rarely tell the truth even when their life depends on it. Their whole consciousness is focused on one thing - where their next fix is coming from, even if they are picking Methadone up on a daily basis. They steal or mug you for the cost of a fix, they do not look beyond that so will sell something worth thousands for a mere pittance so they can go and see their dealer.
    Mt neighbour took an overdose and I called an ambulance. All his friends and his partner worried about was how angry he would feel once he woke up straight - it never dawned on them that this guy with a weak heart, who stops breathing on his prescription drugs let alone anything else, might not ever wake up again.
    The children here grow up thinking a trip to the dealer is just like going to the supermarket, and everything has a price, including food coupons. They can be exchanged for speed, 1/3 face value, then the dealer goes up to the shopping centre and sells them for 2/3 face value and there is always someone happy to make a profit. The addicts pass my place going to the dealer, three doors down, and wonder if I am yet old enough and frail enough to risk breaking in; they mug women leaving the shopping centres, and its quicker getting a pizza delivered than getting the police to answer an emergency call. I'm on crutches at the moment and do not dare go out alone. I've even had pre-school kids trying to mug me for money for their parents habits.
    Alcohol addiction is bad enough, and I have been throwing drunks out of pubs since I was 12 years old so I am reasonably tough, but drug addiction is scary because they look like real people, they talk like real people, but its a complete facade! You can never, ever, ever trust an addict face to face, let alone turn your back on one.

  11. Hub_Specialist profile image61
    Hub_Specialistposted 12 years ago

    This is asking something like, if you are standing on a cliff with a deep river on one side and the deadly valley on the other side. Either side you fall, you will no longer be alive. So, both of them are destructive enough to destroy the emotions and bucks too.
        Drugs effects your health instantly where as the alcohol acts as slow poison. And both are addictive.

  12. Miss Paula profile image39
    Miss Paulaposted 12 years ago

    I think they are both destructive, they both take over your life, and end friendship, family's are broken up, children are hurt emotional,and sometimes physically. So I would say they are both wrong to do.

  13. Mighty Mom profile image78
    Mighty Momposted 12 years ago

    It depends on how quickly you want to be taken down. Typically, hard drugs will destroy your life faster than alcohol.
    Because they are illegal, you're at higher risk for violence more quickly (drug deal gone bad, stealing/robbing to feed your habit).
    But make no mistake. Alcohol is just as deadly.
    It is is some ways worse because it is legal and thus the alcoholic can keep "using" for years or decades without the stigma of hard core drug addiction.
    Families are destroyed by alcoholism almost worse because there is more denial and protection of the sick person. If you've got a heroin addict living in your house you're going to walk away from them a heck of a lot faster....
    But the destruction to kids of having a parent who isn't there for them ... doesn't matter which substance is taking the parent away. The parent is absent...

    In the end, tho, make no mistake. If you are an addict you are an addict. The substance is not the defining issue (we call it alcohol in all its forms).
    If you can't get your primary drug you will inevitably turn to booze, even if you don't think you have an alcohol problem or are an alcoholic.

  14. profile image0
    jasper420posted 12 years ago

    both are equally distructive addction rather it be drugs alcohol or any other dependcy its all of the same deisease and its all life altering and changing

  15. profile image0
    bharath.adupaposted 12 years ago

    dude taking in  excess anything is be more specific self destructive....

  16. sarah lawton profile image57
    sarah lawtonposted 12 years ago

    Both are as destructive as each other. because they are both drugs, they are destructive to the person taking them mentally, phyically emontionaly and monetary, at the same time they are destructive to their family and friends in the same way.

  17. profile image57
    rahuljaswalposted 12 years ago

    Well both are very destructive. You shouldn't even choose any of these, these will deteriorate your health and cause death eventually.

  18. eddiecarrara profile image94
    eddiecarraraposted 12 years ago

    It all depends which one you let control your life, it's really not the substance that is destructive, it's you.

  19. bjornborgboxers profile image60
    bjornborgboxersposted 12 years ago

    It is not so much the relative destructiveness of either one. It is the 'self' that determines the level of addiction and the actions that go with it. Minor usage of either one does not have to be a bad thing per se. When one's behavior is influenced by need to use, that's when the costs start kicking in. Depending on the country you live in, the monetary value can be really different.

  20. Attikos profile image81
    Attikosposted 12 years ago

    The question draws a distinction that isn't there. Alcohol is a drug, though for most people (not all) a less addictive one than some.

  21. RASO profile image69
    RASOposted 12 years ago

    Both of them causes violence. I think that life is better without drugs and alcohol.


  22. proudmamma profile image83
    proudmammaposted 12 years ago

    @ ginjill ashberry who wrote the following..........especially for lower income individuals, this may result in poor and reckless decision made to earn enough money to feed the addiction. Drug addiction has no social boundaries. Poor and reckless decisions are made by the poor and the rich just the same when it comes to drug addiction.
    Read the story in the link above, you will understand why I said it has no social ecomomic boundaries. I've done my research, I can give you more. A young man with a bright future as an artist. He's parents gave him everything. They both had excellent jobs in the medical field. They moved to the best neighborhood to send their child to what they thought was the best school district. They made sure he had anything he wanted and needed while growing up. He robbed them to feed his habit, as well as others. He did whatever it took to get his next fix. At twenty-two, he's now sitting in prison for the second time. When he gets out, I'm sure he will be right back at it again.
    Here's another one for you, I have a son who has a drug addiction. I'm not an elitist, but I'm not poor. He's turned into someone I never dreamed he would ever be. Drug addiction will cross all social economic boundaries.
    One thing I do agree with you on is drug addiction destroys faster.
    @ A.A. Zavala drug addiction changes the person. It turns them into someone you don't know. It's heart wrenching to watch what they become. Emotionally it's extremely hard on the family members. Read three of my hub pages and you fill see.......A Mother's Nightmare.....Helpless.......Coping with a Son's Drug Addiciton the links are below. … -Addiction

    I have joined online groups to help me deal with the emotional pain, it has caused me.

  23. klaceyjsmith profile image60
    klaceyjsmithposted 12 years ago

    Depends which internal organs you value most?  Alcohol is destructive to many organs, but more so to the liver which detoxifies the body of all the adverse things you put in it!  Obviously, without a liver, those toxins remain in your bloodstream and will eventually lead you to death in a disease called Cirrohsis.
    Drugs affect the chemical actions of your brain altering many of the compositions there and leading to altered mental status. You can "fry" your brain so much with drugs that you are not able to function as normally, and this can be acute at first but then, with continued, heavy, drug use, it can become chronic. Take a look at musicians that have chronic drug use and some of the peculiar ways in which they now act as a result of the damage they've done to their brains.
    The monetary costs?  Well, your addiction will hold you prisoner as long as you don't get help and you'll stay broke. Addictions not only affect you, they affect everyone that loves you.  My advice, go get some serious help.

  24. lonesomeshaggy profile image62
    lonesomeshaggyposted 12 years ago

    I think both are equal but the drug addiction is more serious destruction.

  25. Eight8Consulting profile image59
    Eight8Consultingposted 12 years ago

    Dugs are more destructive, they not only fail you physically but also mentally

  26. nabeelplus profile image60
    nabeelplusposted 12 years ago

    Drugs & Alcohol are both destructive in that the effects on the body can be permanent even if the addiction is overcome.

  27. sinbad27 profile image69
    sinbad27posted 12 years ago

    I agree that both are very destructive. I think addiction to hard drugs have a faster destructive power as alcohol is more lethal on the long term.

  28. mesacleanpools profile image61
    mesacleanpoolsposted 12 years ago

    I would say it depends on the drugs. I think both drug and alcohol addiction are one in the same because people become addicted for the same reasons.

    Harder drugs such as meth and heroine are worse because the physical addiction as well as mental addiction.

  29. My Footprints profile image61
    My Footprintsposted 12 years ago

    Both. Whatever addiction one is inflicted with, there is no good outcome. Most of the time, it cost pain to the family members to see the destruction it bring to the person addicted. Nothing good from both addiction.

  30. stirstik profile image60
    stirstikposted 12 years ago

    Neither is more destructive than the other. It depends on the person. Some would do anything for a drink, and some would do anything for a hit. I would have to say that the most difficult one to stop is alchohol. Reason for this is that it is cheaper, socially acceptable, socially popular, and legal. Alchohol is everywhere and highly accessable. Depending on how the person deals with their addiction, the generational cost is enormous. Your children become accustomed to your habits, it becomes a normal, acceptable behaviour for the child, so in response, the child is much more likely to develop an addiction. This can create a huge cycle that develops into many many generations of addictive behaviour. Not out of a want, but simply because they do not know any better. I have seen families ripped apart by both drug use and alchoholism. Its destructive to the family who loses all trust for the addict, and destructive to the addict who loses their support systems because of their habit.
    The emotional effects for this can be big also, depending on how much help the individual(s) pursue. It can result in anxiety disorders, PTSD, health problems from the drug use which can bring about depression, hopelessness, anger, and many others. It can permanently damage the addicted user, or the family/friends of the addicted. Sadly, it is a very, very small percentage of individuals who are victorious over this lifestyle. It involves change of thinking, changing friends and people you normally associate with, changing daily routines. It requires a completely different lifestyle change in order for that person to be successful. It is possible, but it is extremely difficult.

  31. Dr Rockpile profile image60
    Dr Rockpileposted 12 years ago

    They are both the same. They will destroy people lives and health. The only difference is that drug addiction happens much more rapidly.

  32. Sciborgs profile image60
    Sciborgsposted 12 years ago

    The simple answer is that they both are.

    Alcohol being legal and more accessible would have me lean towards choosing booze as the more destructive though, not to mention the fact I've seen plenty of people use the old "I only smoke when I'm drunk, or get high when I'm drunk". Which is basically a double edged sword.

    I agree with everyone that they are both equally destructive, but leans towards alcohol because you can walk right into any store and put a 12 back of bad decisions, morning hangover, a case of the "cant remember nothin", and future health problems, right up on the counter and purchase it.

  33. profile image36
    colorngpageskidsposted 12 years ago

    From watching others with addictions, I don't smoke anything, rarely drink and never smoked, it seems to me there is no addiction more difficult to kick than nicotine from smoking.

  34. profile image54
    quixotictxn17posted 12 years ago

    A wise man once wrote that 'the only thing destroyed by marijuana was a bag of Doritos' (link is failing, but see Breckenridge, CO marijuana debates)

    and i'll testify this is perhaps a bit glorified but the truth.

    the war on drugs is a farce, a facade, an attempt to appease the masses who want to blame something like pot and coke for all societal ills. it spends exorbitant amounts of money, and brings in even more. of course, i don't condone the use of hard drugs like heroin or meth or anything of the sort. of course, i agree these will ruin your life. but consider that about 1% of the population will EVER try these drugs, while virtually EVERYONE will try alcohol. consider the enormous costs of alcohol, simply because it is "acceptable".

    any addiction is destructive. if the object of addiction is sex, self-harm, heroin, or cough syrup, lives will be damaged. but in terms of which has the most impact on our society? ALCOHOL. what do most people try? what are most addicts dealing with? the number of heroin addicts pales in comparison with the numbers in AA or other programs.

  35. ronhi profile image67
    ronhiposted 12 years ago

    in my view, alcohol is classified as a drug too...ofcourse the only differnce with "the other drugs" is that it is legal.

  36. vansh121 profile image60
    vansh121posted 12 years ago

    Usually addiction of anything is destructive. But in between both of them, addiction of drug is more destructive.

  37. ginalynimpas profile image60
    ginalynimpasposted 12 years ago

    alcohol addiction is such so destructively , it can cause sickness ... it will not give us excuses because alcohol addiction is not easy to escape if we could not discipline ourselves until it takes time to kill us.....

  38. Tlc Artchick profile image61
    Tlc Artchickposted 12 years ago

    They are one and the same.  Alcohol is one of the most dangerous, pervasive drugs out there!   It's just legal, and in liquid form.

  39. JoseMillan profile image60
    JoseMillanposted 12 years ago

    Wow, a very interesting question!
    To tell you the truth, Alcohol must be considered also as a DRUG, a "legal" drug but marketing wants to make appear alcohol as less destructive than a DRUG, no further than reality, both, drugs and alcohol are in the same level of destruction
    Both destroys or both have the same potential to destroy entire lifes, jobs, families and all what surrounds you. Vice is a vice.

    Of course, there are drugs extremely "fast" that engages faster than alcohol, this drug is morphine,but remember ALCOHOL is as serious of any other drug, Remain far from any of them !!

  40. wellspoken profile image60
    wellspokenposted 12 years ago

    More destructive would be alcohol in my opinion because it can cause various conditions within your body. But if you are hooked on some of the more serious drug like heroin they can be seriously destructive as well. The thing is that some people can live their entire lives using drugs and alcohol and then when they decide to stop they die because their bodies have adjusted to the impurities and can no longer function without them. See a professional if you have been using for an extended period of time and want to quit because cold turkey has killed a few people because it puts their bodies into too much shock.

  41. supplies expert profile image61
    supplies expertposted 12 years ago

    I've watched a few friends go through drug addictions and even a few adults go through alcoholism. Neither is great. They do have different affects. The drug users that I know/knew all hid their drug use the best they could (which isn't that good considering drug users aren't usually the most observant of people). But then the alcoholics I know are very open with their problem, they drink all the time in front of others, but it's tough to say that they are doing something wrong because I drink as well, but not everyday, and not so much of a binge drinker.

    i would say emotionally they are both heart wrenching, they both hurt in so many different ways. Monetarily really depends on the drug. and well no matter what, the family always has a hard time. I've watched drugs ruin my friend and his family, it's terrible

  42. Kawaljit kaur profile image68
    Kawaljit kaurposted 12 years ago

    Both are equally destructive as in both the cases, addict is not the only person who is affected but the families are ruined in these sufferings.

  43. terrektwo profile image81
    terrektwoposted 12 years ago

    Depends on the drug, there is a wide gulf between crack cocaine and marijuana. Crack is horribly addictive and could kill you after a few tries, whereas marijuana addiction is more of a mental addiction and could be used for years even decades without causing any noticeable issues. Between booze and marijuana I would say booze is much worse. Between booze and harder drugs I would say harder drugs are much worse.

  44. stephaniedas profile image73
    stephaniedasposted 12 years ago

    That depends on the addict. I would say you can't answer this question, because it isn't specific enough. There are lots of drugs like caffeine and anti-depressants that tons of people are addicted to but aren't really "destructive". On the other hand, nicotine itself isn't that bad, but addiction to it via cigarettes almost ensures eventual death. Alcohol is technically a drug, and a very powerful one because it is very addictive and it is one of the few drugs that can kill you if you are addicted and deprived of it. I think the other one is heroin.

  45. Gaizy profile image73
    Gaizyposted 12 years ago

    There is no difference - Alcoholism is drug addiction, it's just that in this case the drug of choice happens to be alcohol.

  46. profile image56
    soniacharanposted 12 years ago

    both are very bad and i do think its useless to compare between two bad habits...
    however one should try to resist these addictions...

  47. profile image0
    Majadezposted 12 years ago

    Alcohol is slower and more socially acceptable whereas people generally react faster to hardcore drugs.  I don't know which is more destructive.  Alcohol just seems like a longer battle.  Although drugs may be more of a difficult battle.  A controversial question...

  48. mary615 profile image86
    mary615posted 12 years ago

    They are both destructive, and I have found that if a person is addicted to one, they are usually addicted to the other.  I think alcohol is more destructive, though

  49. suzettenaples profile image88
    suzettenaplesposted 12 years ago

    I believe both are equally destructive.  Alcohol is considered a drug, so in a way, the question is moot.

  50. Peanutritious profile image60
    Peanutritiousposted 12 years ago

    They are equally destructive and wreck lives.  Have a look at my hubs 'You stink and your mum's a baghead', 'poles apart' and 'carers, the invisible problem' which look at addiction.  Really enjoyed reading through all responses.


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