Assignment 2: Chapters 2 & 3
Scientists have been focusing on the impact of genes on behavior and the development of psychological disorders. This research has contributed to the understanding of many disorders, specifically substance-related disorders.
In the case study of Ellis, a 30-year-old African American male, the seriousness of substance-related disorders is undeniable. Ellis has been crippled by his long history of heroin addiction that has rendered him completely helpless to it. When exploring this particular case, there are many factors that irrefutably contribute to the hardship of Ellis’s disorder, including environmental issues, and understanding these influences can help determine treatment and recovery. Before examining the environmental factors that greatly influence such disorders, it is important to examine the genetic influence that serves as an additional contribution to his high level of addiction. Firstly, scientists have examined the influence of genetics and how this contributes to personality development, cognitive ability, and wellbeing. Substance-related disorders have been studied and researchers have found that some people are genetically susceptible to drug abuse. A person’s use of drugs is primarily influenced by environmental factors, but the abuse and dependence of such drugs can be linked to genetic factors that make certain people more vulnerable. These genetic factors do not expose people to these substances, and no particular gene causes (or prevents) a person from developing an addiction. However, genetics can affect how a person will experience certain drugs and be a determinant on who will or will not become addicted to drugs. Research has also shown tha...
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...and behavioral coping skills Durand & Barlow, 2013).
In conclusion, the presence of a substance-related disorder is a very serious problem and many who abuse substances (such as Ellis) find themselves physically, mentally, and financially drained from their addiction. People such as Ellis begin to obstruct their personal relationships, have difficulty being efficient in the workplace (if they are still employed) and they are overall consumed by this debilitating disorder. In Ellis’s case (and others similar) there is a probability that genetics have played a role in addiction and the correlation between the brain and the response to substances greatly influences the presence of such a disorder and the person's behavior while battling their addiction.
Durand, M., & Barlow, D. (2013). Essentials of abnormal psychology. (6 ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
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