Social Consequences of Drug Use & Abuse

Decision-Making Skills

Beyond the medical risks, drug impairment can affect our decision-making skills, even in terms of how much of a drug we consume. When making a decision about drug use, set your limits ahead of time, not in the moment.

When making a decision about drug use, also take the social situation into consideration.

  • Would an impaired state put me at a great risk for making an unsafe decision in this setting?
  • Do I feel secure enough in this setting enough to impair my decision-making skills?


Drug use or abuse can also affect job prospects. Many employers test for drugs before making a hire or randomly among hired employees.


When someone spirals into a drug addiction, it becomes difficult to keep up trusting relationships with family members and friends. Sometimes drug users or addicts feel the need to lie to their loved ones to cover up the problem. In extreme cases, drug addicts may steal in order to pay for a fix. At this point, their judgement has become so crowded that even a valued relationship can be sacrificed for more drugs.

Again, it’s vitally important to remember that drugs change your perception of reality, but they don’t change reality. Many people take drugs to avoid pain or hardships of everyday life, but the social and health consequences of drugs often make their life more difficult than it was before, making it harder and harder to enjoy life sober.

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