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Personality changes caused by drug addiction

Drug addiction have have a variety of effects on an individual.  It can cause ill effects on a person's health and social activities, and it can also have quite drastic effects on a person's personality.  Those close to someone suffering from an addiction are often the people who are most aware of these changes, especially the changes in personality, and it can often be very distressing for the loved ones to observe. 

It is also troubling to the observers when the changes in personality become permanent and are present even outside of the drug use, and research has shown that there are drugs that can cause very long lasting personality changes with even one dose, such as magic mushrooms (Science Daily, 2011). 

The research found that one single high dose of the active ingredient in magic mushrooms was enough to bring about a significant personality change that lasted at least a year in almost two thirds of their test participants.  The most drastic change was in individuals 'openness' which incorporate open-mindedness, imagination and abstract ideas, the drug appeared to increase these factors as measured by a standard scale.  However, the high dose participants also reported higher levels of fear and anxiety compared to those who were given a low dose. 

Although the personality change documented in the above study are not considered dangerous, there has been very little investigation into the long lasting personality changes that occur as a result of other drugs such as cocaine or heroin. 

In order to prevent as many negative effects as possible from drug misuse, it is vital that individuals undertake a detox and rehab program as soon as possible to ensure as little damage is caused as possible.


Science Daily.  (2011).  Single Dose of 'Magic Mushrooms' Hallucinogen May Create Lasting Personality Change, Study Suggests.  Sourced from:

Published by on 12/04/2020.

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