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New Study: Workplace Bullying May Lead To Drug Abuse

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Remember the days of school yard bullies, mean girls, and repeated efforts to belittle, patronize and humiliate classmates? All of us have certainly either been involved or observed bullying or teasing on some level or another growing up. Not surprisingly, humans do not change much as they grow up! Sure, maturity levels rise and discretion and deference more than not overrule impulsive behaviors, but people are human. In a study on bullying in Helsinki, Finland, researchers have found an interesting correlation that tries to link victims of workplace bullying (defined by the researchers as the situations at work where the victims are in an unequal position with respect to their bully and are unable to defend themselves against the negative actions) and the potential for drug addiction and alcoholism.

Dealing with bullies in the workplace

In a study involving over 6500 government employees in Helsinki, Finland, Dr. Tea Lallukka and her colleagues wanted to see how workplace bullying coincided with subsequent use of drugs like anti-depressants and sedatives. The study aloes takes an interesting look at mental health care, and the need for us all to be vigilant over our lives and aware of stressors. A person could easily marginalize the severity of his or her condition by shifting the blame to other areas. This is denial. A person who doesn’t abuse alcohol, crack, heroin, cocaine, synthetic marijuana, or weed can still become an addict. Klonopin and Xanax  are perfect examples of prescription based drugs that many people are becoming addicted to at a rapid rate. Learning how to cope with life stressors, set boundaries in the workplace, address emotional issues, and learn new life skills would be a more effective and efficient way to deal with workplace bullying. Unfortunately many employees are instead covering their symptoms by abuse prescribed medications.

Nothing changes if nothing changes

Manipulating, malicious teasing, belittling, and workplace bullying are not going to go away anytime soon. What can change are the ways and attitudes with which we confront negative circumstances, ways that do not include self-medicating with addictive drugs or alcohol in order to confront such problems. Unless something changes, addiction may become a much bigger problem than the workplace bullying itself. Fortunately, there are addiction treatment programs for professionals designed specifically for adults in the workforce that are suffering from alcoholism and drug abuse. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact us now at 1-800-861-1768.

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