Alcohol has long been one of the most commonly abused substances, yet its correlation to driving while intoxicated (DWI) is often not considered until after an incident occurs. While addiction does not necessarily mean that someone will get a DWI, there can be a connection between the two — for some people, an alcohol addiction could put them at a higher risk of driving under the influence.
What is Addiction, and What is a DWI?
Addiction is a persistent ailment impacting the brain's functionality and structure, making it difficult for individuals to control their actions and compulsively seek out harmful substances, behaviors, or activities. Meanwhile, a DWI is a criminal offense when an individual operates a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Both addiction and DWIs can impact families, communities, and the individuals involved.
Exploring Addiction and DWI
Many studies suggest a connection between addiction and the likelihood of getting a DWI. A report published in the National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services, individuals with addiction are significantly more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors, including driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This may be partly due to how addictive substances affect brain function, impairing judgment and coordination.
Additionally, people with addiction might exhibit a higher tendency to participate in risky and impetuous actions when influenced by the substance while under the influence, making them more vulnerable to getting behind the wheel while intoxicated. While not all individuals with addiction will necessarily get a DWI, it is clear that there is a strong correlation between the two.
Risk Factors For Getting a DWI Due to Addiction
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have serious legal and personal consequences. Unfortunately, some individuals may be at a higher risk of getting a DWI due to addiction. One of the main risk factors is the frequency of use — the more often someone consumes drugs or alcohol, the higher their chances of making poor driving decisions. Other factors include a history of previous DWIs, a lack of social support, and mental health issues such as depression or anxiety.
Why a Criminal Defense Attorney is Essential if You Got a DWI
If you have been charged with a DWI, hiring a criminal defense attorney is essential. A DWI charge carries serious consequences, including fines, driver's license suspension, and possibly imprisonment. Believing that self-representation in court is feasible might be an error in judgment.
The experienced Houston criminal defense attorneys at The Law Offices of Jed Silverman will protect your rights, gather evidence, and build a strong defense strategy. We will also negotiate any potential plea agreement or a reduced sentence.
With a DWI charge, there is too much at stake to navigate the complicated legal system alone. Our attorneys at The Law Offices of Jed Silverman will provide invaluable guidance and support to help you get the best possible outcome. Contact us online or by phone to schedule a free consultation. (713) 597-2221