man holding chest in pain

Long Term Toll Drugs Take on the Body

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

An extremely favorable band of mine by the name of Modest Mouse once said, “On this life that we call home, the years go fast but the days go so slow.” What a line, and couldn’t be more true to boot. Life is such a short journey and we often forget to stop and smell the roses. Now, as cliché as that sounds, let’s break it down and take a look at the validity behind it. The short goes by slowly but the long part speeds by. It’s human nature to focus on the big picture in life, but we tend to forget how quickly the little things can add up. Sure a penny isn’t much, but you put 100 pennies together and you have the equivalent of one dollar.  This same analogy can be applied to a single ant to a nest of ants, one baby pimple to chronic acne on somebody’s skin, or experimenting a little bit to the sleepless nights of debauchery and mischief totaled up over a period of time.

The toll drugs take on the body can be looked at in a slew of different aspects. It’s really about the same as it does to the mind. Sure, a few times here and there shouldn’t be detrimental at all, but addicts and alcoholics never do something just a few times. We, the chemically addicted, love to take everything we do to the extreme and really can’t ever seem to get enough pleasure. Some of us eventually become sick and tired of the lifestyle alcoholic thinking promises, so we get clean in pursuit of happiness and a new existence. Over the lifespan of our active usage, however, we did things that simply put- are very difficult to recover from. In this short life, death is the only thing existing with permanence, but some wrongs we have done to ourselves and others cannot be righted.

Not Meant for this Kind of Abuse

The interesting thing about the human body is that it is created to survive. Call it evolution, God, or flying spaghetti monsters- but our bodies adapt to change. The body will try to thrive in whatever condition it is put in. If somebody is to live in a colder region of the world, you would think their skin and blood will thicken for the freezing weather conditions. Survival. Same goes for the heat and vice versa. Another instance is introducing a substance like alcohol or opiates to the body. Our body subconsciously becomes dependent on this substance we are forcing into it. By nature, the human body does not require either of those substances to live, yet it takes them in stride and learns to cope with the poisons being shoveled into the bloodstream. There’s a toll the drugs take on the body here and the body attempts to deal with the outside stressors being induced by becoming dependent on said substance. This is the body trying to keep up with the garbage entering and being prepared for this outside strain. Yes, that is correct. The human body becomes physically dependent on the chemicals we force in so that it can function and serve us better. Isn’t that wild? All the cells and atoms function in such unison as if the mind and the body were one. Imagine that.

substance abuse

Then on an entirely different level, there is the damage and toll drugs take on the body internally. Every time that plunger is carelessly pushed down, or that bottle shamefully picked up, we are sending toxins into our bodies that beat our organs down over time. Never mind all the brain cells being strangled and burning out too early. That a whole other section of self-abuse. We’re directly looking at all the other organs that attempt to function synonymously. Our natural filters like the kidneys and liver begin to “get dirty” and start slowing down other functions being performed. The skin is connected to muscle connected to blood connected to organs connected to bone and so forth and so on.  All of our internal organs are just one giant butterfly effect. So when these things stop working together, injuries are more likely to occur as well as things building up that can potentially be fatal down the road.

Then we will lastly swing upstairs to all the noise going on in between our ears. The needle and the damage done. Addicts and alcoholics are master chefs at overcooking their brains with a side of shot out neurons. Some of the drugs will cut off oxygen to the brain, whereas others just simply kill brain cells and leave effects that will stick with you for life. In some cases like myself, years into sobriety some individuals will still experience mild auditory or visual hallucinations. The mind likes to play tricks on its captor, this is just a fact. On the other hand, having abused the mind and body like addicts and alcoholics do, we are in for more than just a few tricks with this deck of cards. The effects left from addiction and alcoholism doesn’t have a specific timeline. It will vary from person to person and heavily depend on many outside factors such as length of abuse or what the choice of destruction picked usually was.

There is no denying at all that ingesting some of the chemicals we do is clinically insane. Some of the things we have been willing to put into our bodies would astound most normal people. All the short-term effects are equally as dangerous but in different ways. At the end of the day, it really just makes one kind of question, how many rounds of Russian roulette they are really willing to play.

Pay the Toll and Not the Reaper

When it comes down to it, addiction or alcoholism are no laughing matter. If somebody wants to drink or get loaded in some form or another, it is their prerogative. However, many of us suffer from a mentality that controls that same aspect of our lives and takes “choice” out of the equation. Sometimes it takes some simple changes and it’s amazing how different of a life can be conjured up. If you or a loved one is struggling with chemical dependency and are ready for help, please call 1-844-489-0836 or visit We are ready to give you any suggestions possible and set you or your loved one on a path that we can all be proud of.

Meet Our Team
Meet Our Team

From our certified therapists and nurses to our emotional support animal "Cooper", our entire team is dedicated to the health and success of our clients throughout our program and beyond.

Help Is Available. Speak With Someone Today.

Our admission team is available to help 24/7.
Skip to content