Personality Traits of Heroin Addicts

 

Can heroin change your personality?

It seems obvious that heroin would adversely affect a person’s personality, mainly because narcotics affect the brain. But the truth is, it’s far more complicated than that. There are three primary elements to heroin related personality change; (1) were either of the heroin addict’s parents an addict, (2) the type of behavior used to acquire heroin, (3) the physical and mental effects from using heroin.
 

Heroin and Memory Loss

 

Personality traits

We know now that there are specific personality traits common to most heroin users. These characteristics differ from person to person, but in general, they score very high on Neuroticism, especially Vulnerability to Stress. They also score very low on Conscientiousness, particularly Competence, Achievement-Striving, and Deliberation.

Five-Factor Model

Compulsive

We know that heroin addiction is both a positive and negative reinforced behavior. Just about any heroin addict will tell you that heroin consumption produces immense pleasure. They’ll also tell you that it produces immense pain, whenever they run out of heroin. If they do run out, they develop withdrawal symptoms, and it is the fear of withdrawal, coupled with the memory of pleasure that creates drug cravings. Heroin cravings develop into a tenacious drive to find heroin, a compulsion to use heroin, and an inability to control intake.

Characteristics of a Heroin Addict

  • Tenacious seeking of heroin
  • Compulsive use of heroin
  • Inability to control intake of heroin
  • The emergence of a negative emotional state whenever deprived of heroin

 

Criminal-Minded

If you are around heroin addicts long enough you’ll notice that many of them are criminals. Some are murderers, and others shoplifters. We know that about 95% of heroin addicts admit to some degree of criminality. The interesting thing about criminality is that it often leads to fear, paranoia, anger, verbal abuse and violence.
 
 
 
 

Non-Sexual

Heroin addicts are, for the most part, unhappy, distrusting, introverted, and anti-social. They typically exhibit various degrees of criminal behavior. Heck, they admit that much. To top it all off, many¬†of them have lost their sex drive¬†altogether. Reduced libido is so prevalent among heroin addicts that it’s a common joke when they socialize together.

See: Phineas Gage