Pressures of life can easily build up and result in a sense of just not being able to cope. When this happens, people can become clinically depressed and may turn to drink or illegal drugs to find a way to make the pain milder.
Some people also now use prescription pain killers because of the euphoric effects they may provide. This is really an abuse of the system as prescription pain meds are intended for those with true injuries or illnesses that have chronic pain. They are not intended for relieving emotional disappointments and heartaches.
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In addition to using drugs and alcohol for the relief of pain, it also can be an indulgence based on fitting in with one's peers or just to kill boredom. It can become a weekend habit that builds into a dependency.
This may not have been based on any problems from one's childhood, trauma, or emotional issues, but just the result of partying and looking for a high.
Many people do not even think out the medications that they are taking for conditions such as asthma, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other illnesses. To mix these with street drugs or alcohol can be quite dangerous. Just because one time of doing it does not seem to result in any ill effects doesn't mean it's a good idea. It can build up in your system and lead to long-term problems.