most addictive drugs

Dangerous Substances: 8 of the Most Addictive Drugs out There Today

Most people know someone is addicted to drugs in one form or another. Over 19 million people battled drug addiction in 2017. That’s roughly 1 in 20 Americans. Chances are, someone in your orbit has a substance abuse problem.

Unfortunately, as these drugs become cheaper and easier to make, this problem might only get worse. But what drugs are the most addictive? Which should you avoid at all costs?

Keep reading to learn about 8 of the most addictive drugs out there today.

1. Nicotine

There’s no other way to put it, nicotine is one of the most addictive drugs on this planet! And the tobacco industry has done its best to make it one of the most widely used and abused substances in the world.

With slick advertisements and catchy jingles, millions of people started smoking cigarettes in the last 200 years. The inception of the advertisements geared towards a specific demographic and young ladies from the ages of 18-35 years old were the target audience. It was nothing to cheer about later on as scientists and researchers discovered that smoking is deadly and can cause cancer.


But even with increased awareness, according to the American Cancer Society, there are roughly 13.5 million people who smoke cigarettes and nearly 500,000 smokers who have died because of it.

2. Caffeine

Sure, a nice cup of coffee to help you wake up in the morning sounds pleasing. Although, you also need to know that it is 2 of 8 of the most addictive drugs out there today. What makes it more addicting is the fact that you need another cup to keep you going. This sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

Coffee drinkers who want to stop feeling the caffeine withdrawals simply have another cup, and there you have it, addiction at it’s finest.

3. Heroin

This derivative of the opium poppy plant is one of the rising stars of the 8 of the most addictive drugs out there today. It’s been growing in popularity since it has surfaced in the USA. The growth stemmed from Latin America and Asia. Naturally, the opioid receptors are seen in the brain’s activity which involves in the pain killing reactions people will get when taking heroin.

It’s the addicts most needed and most wanted feeling when taking heroin. This is why it’s so incredibly addictive. 

4. Cocaine

This drug is highly addictive and potentially life-threatening. It’s similar to coffee but more potent because you can make another drug with it (crack cocaine). The cocaine trade is a $75 billion dollar money-making industry. In fact, there are more than 20 million people worldwide using cocaine today.

5. Barbiturates

This drug is addictive and can cause death because of it’s incredibly potency by volume. In fact, if a first-time user is an addict already, they may overdose because it takes only a small dose for a mind-bending high, compared to other drugs.

Therefore, an addict may think they need a large dose when in fact it’s more potent than other types of addictive drugs and can simply overdose. Because of this, it can lead to a lethal overdose

6. Alcohol

Over 13 million Americans are addicted to alcohol. This is a particularly dangerous addiction because of how innocuous the problem may seem. Alcohol is a social, legal drug that people use to have fun and let loose. So when its usage becomes a problem may be hard to spot. 

But the effects of alcoholism can be as dangerous and lethal as heroin and other drugs that seem scarier. 

7. Pain Killers and Opioids

Pain killers are amongst the 8 of the most addictive drugs out there today because of the effects it has on the brain’s activity. When people want a pain killer, it’s naturally because of the tolerance they don’t have for pain.

Therefore, when they need a pain killer, even a low dosage of aspirin, it becomes addictive because of the effects it has when the properties wear off. Thereby, a user may need more to counteract that pain once again. As a user’s dosage increases, the drug becomes more and more dangerous to use. 

8. Marijuana

Marijuana is the most friendly of the drugs on this list. It’s becoming legal in more and more places, and it has great therapeutic and healing effects. THC, the psychoactive chemical in weed, is its secret ingredient. It helps those who have arthritis, pain, and other diseases and ailments. 

However, this doesn’t mean that this drug can’t be used in excess or that it isn’t addictive. You probably have a stoner in your life that is spending way too much time and money smoking weed. In fact, it is because weed has so many positive effects that it is so addictive. 

The bright side, however, is that marijuana addiction is not life-threatening. Unlike the other drugs on this list, it is impossible to die from a marijuana overdose. 

Still, though, you should use moderation when smoking weed. You can have bad trips if you smoke too much at once and if you prolonged usage can negatively affect your lifestyle.

Are You Hooked On One of These Most Addictive Drugs?

These are the most addictive drugs on the planet. But if you’re hooked on one of these drugs, your plight is not hopeless. It doesn’t matter if you’re hooked on heroin or Fentanyl, there is help out there for you. 

If you need assistance turning your life around and getting off one of these terrible drugs, be sure to check out one of our treatment programs.  

About the Reviewer: Chris Barnes

Chris BarnesChristopher Barnes has worked in health care for over thirty years. He is a graduate of Alabama State University where he earned a double Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Work and Psychology in 1982. Christopher Barnes is currently the Director of Clinical services at The Discovery House where he has been employed for the past five years. Because of his extensive experience in health care & substance abuse he has an excellent rapport with constituents, clients, and other professional organizations in the counseling/social service community.