Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Public Health

Degree Type

Master of Science in Health


Humans have been using plant-derived drugs for as long as we have recorded history. Significant negative consequences related to drug abuse have occurred in the areas of health, social issues, family relations, legal systems, and economic productivity. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between meaning in life and drug abuse. An epidemiological, retrospective study was performed to compare personal meaning in life between individuals receiving inpatient treatment for drug abuse and a group of non-drug abusing controls. Study participants completed the Purpose-In-Life Test and Life Attitude Profile-Revised. On both instruments, the inpatient drug abusing subjects were found to have significantly different levels of meaning in life. Drug treatment and primary prevention programs should consider incorporating meaning in life considerations in their strategies. Future research should explore an expanded sample size of drug abusing participants exploring in greater detail life's subjective meaning.


Public Health | Substance Abuse and Addiction