Substance abuse and drug addiction continue to be on the rise and major issues for the United States. The government has poured millions of dollars into anti-drug campaigns and billions into the War on Drugs. Unfortunately, drug abuse and addiction continues to rise. These issues have spread beyond the borders of urban city centers. Rural communities are now inundated with drug trade, gang related issues and addiction. New and more innovative drugs continue to be developed to take the place of drugs that laws focus on or become too dangerous to deal. The internet has become an increasingly dangerous place for young adults. It makes the searching and purchasing of drugs much easier than the past. Young adults do not have to deal with ‘shady’ or dangerous drug dealers or locations to get the drugs they want. Simple search and click of a computer mouse can get kids all the drugs they could ever want. A new innovation in substance abuse has recently been gaining popularity. Digital drug use sounds like something out of a science fiction movie set in the distant future. Sadly, it is not. Digital drugs or I-dosing is the practice of downloading specific song tracks that replicate the auditory experience of being on specific drugs.

Auditory Addiction?

There is no scientific evidence that shows listening to sounds could cause an addiction. The chemistry in the brain does not change, nor does anything in the body change. What is dangerous about this practice of I-dosing is that young adults are dipping their toes into the waters of drug experimentation. Firstly, listening to ‘drug-like’ sounds is far from injecting heroin. The truth is that these kids are beginning to flirt with the idea of abusing drugs. Substance abuse and addiction are progressive issues that start with a gateway drug. Marijuana use today is not seen as the horrid, life-threatening drug that it once was, but it is still a gateway drug. And yet, marijuana use is far beyond simply listening to some strange songs. Still, substance abuse and addiction must start somewhere. By voluntarily engaging in the listening of these tracks young adults are attempting to ‘experiment’ with drugs.

Young adults who listen to these tracks are curious about what the effects are, which may cause an interest in drug experimentation. They eventually will continue to pursue stronger highs, which can lead them to actual drug use and abuse. Finally, listening to this music to cope with an illness like depression or anxiety can lead to severely dangerous behaviors. Most addicts begin using and abusing drugs as a coping mechanism.

Preventing Drug Use

The best way to prevent drug use is to stay educated on drugs and drug use trends. Monitoring your child’s every move like a hawk is impossible, exhausting and counterproductive. This type of parenting will often push your children further away and closer to drug use and abuse. The best thing to do is keep an open and honest dialogue with your child about alcohol and drugs. Statistics show that families the engage in discussion about life, school, alcohol and drugs during family dinner are less likely to have children who become addicted to drugs or alcohol. By staying healthily engaged in your child’s life you can provide a safer learning and growing environment. Keeping them active in school and with extracurricular activities can help to prevent drug use or experimentation. If you suspect that your child is abusing digital drugs or any drug it is imperative to speak with a professional addiction advisor. They can provide any and all information about addiction, drugs and how to combat the issue.