A raw yet so fearless age she was fourteen when she first came across the feeling of being numb, the feeling of complete and utter serenity. She still remembers how the warm embrace of a cigarette against her lips felt like, so dangerous yet so delightful. Being a teenager achieving these feelings to calm your loud thoughts and shattered self feels like a necessity since it gives you the power of freedom and a feeling of being yourself. In today’s age and time, the availability of different intoxicants like heroin, weed, and cannabis and many other are readily accessible a minor than many other necessities like food or water, that is why it is many kids today are more exposed to the possibility of drug abuse and its harmful effects.
Many of us till date are unaware of what drug abuse means since it is and always will be a huge taboo topic in many different households. Drug abuse or drug addiction is a state of periodic or constant intoxication produced by the repeated consumption of a drug. Its characteristics include uncontrollable desire to continue taking the different types of a drug as they confuse the feeling of survival with the intake of these drugs overlooking the definite harmful effects they may have on oneself, according to the latest world drug report released it is estimated that every year globally almost thirty-five million people suffer from drug disorders and their harmful effects and the most saddening part of this is that majority of the 35 million people are kids who range from the ages 12 and above. One question that circles a lot of peoples mind is that why do people use a drug or what is so appealing that people develop a sense of peace in consuming them, and that is because in many different countries since the commencement of life it has been the longing of man to relish the feeling of peace and to shut their minds to the loud voices surrounding them to achieve peace of mind but the hazard of ignorance leads a frustrated soul to adopt what is injurious to self-health and then, pestilence to the entire society surrounding them.
Different ways drugs can be consumed:
Types of drugs:
1. Stimulants: They speed up the activity of the central nervous system which often results in the person using them to feel more alert and energetic an example of these drugs includes amphetamines and cocaine etc.
2. Depressants: They slow down the activity of the central nervous system, which often results in the user feeling less pain, more relaxed, and sleepy. Alcohol and other major tranquilizers are identified as depressants.
3. Hallucinogens: They can alter a user’s sensory perceptions by distorting the messages carried in the central nervous system for example LSD and kava etc.
4. Other: These include psycho-active drugs that do not fit neatly into one of the other categories (e.g. anti-depressants such as Zoloft and mood stabilizers such as Lithium)
What are the harmful effects of drugs?
The answer to this question is that drugs cause large amounts of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate our emotions, motivation, and feelings of pleasure, to flood the brain and produce a “high.” Eventually, drugs can change how the brain works and interfere with a person’s ability to make choices, leading to intense cravings and compulsive drug use. Over time, this behavior can turn into a substance dependency or drug addiction. Other harmful effects may include nausea and abdominal pain, which can also lead to changes in the appetite of a person and major weight loss. Increased strain on the liver is also an effect these drugs could have on a person which puts the person at risk of significant liver damage or liver failure. Seizures, stroke, mental confusion, and brain damage are also a few examples of the type of harm drugs can cause to a persons physical health.
Drugs do not just harm you physically but they also take a huge toll on your mental health as well. Depression, anxiety, paranoia, insomnia are also the few problems one may face by the intake of drugs, other than that if a person had already been going through a mental health problem before consuming the drug there is a high chance that the problem may worsen after the intake of the drug and in some cases, these issues cannot be reversed even after the person discontinues the use of the drug and it creates a void inside a person heart which is very hard to fill. It also creates a distance between ones different relationships which may include your relationship with your family and friends since the more someone abuses drugs, the more their priorities shift toward their drug of choice and many detrimental personality changes can arise, too which may include short temper, lack of patience, decreased interest in others, and self-serving habits which negatively affect your relationships with your family members and generally the other people surrounding you since your mind is unable to draw a line between what is right and what is not.
Today, more than 7 million people suffer from an illicit drug disorder, and one in four deaths results from illicit drug use. More deaths, illnesses, and disabilities are associated with drug abuse than any other preventable health condition. People suffering from drug and alcohol addiction also have a higher risk of unintentional injuries, accidents, and domestic violence incidents. The good news is substance use disorders are treatable.
Can drug abuse be cured?
Like many other diseases for example diabetes, cancer and many other drug abuse is also a type of disease that cannot be cured but can be controlled successfully with proper intake of different medicines needed for treatment, unlike a diabetic or cancer patient who is most likely to die from their specific disease a person who suffers from drug abuse is not most likely to die from their addiction. Seventy percent of the people who are alcoholics are likely to recover if they fully engage themselves in the treatment process for at least six months to one year and make a promise to themselves to stay determined to the promise of life long sobriety because if they spiral it makes it much harder for a person to recover as your body can not bear the damage.
Research on the science of addiction and the treatment of substance use disorders has led to the development of research-based methods that help people to stop using drugs and resume productive lives, also known as being in recovery and it also enables people to counteract addiction’s disruptive effects on their brain and behavior and regain control of their lives. Research shows that when treating addictions to opioids (prescription pain relievers or drugs like heroin or fentanyl), the medication should be the first line of treatment, usually combined with some form of behavioral therapy or counseling. Medications are also available to help treat addiction to alcohol and nicotine.
Additionally, medications are used to help people detoxify from drugs, although detoxification is not the same as treatment and is not sufficient to help a person recover. Detoxification alone without subsequent treatment generally leads to a resumption of drug use, for people with addictions to drugs like stimulants or cannabis, no medications are currently available to assist in treatment, so treatment consists of behavioral therapies. Treatment should be tailored to address each patient’s drug use patterns and drug-related medical, mental, and social problems.
Behavioral therapies help people in drug addiction treatment modify their attitudes and behaviors related to drug use. As a result, patients can handle stressful situations and various triggers that might cause another relapse. Behavioral therapies can also enhance the effectiveness of medications and help people remain in treatment longer.
The different types of behavioral therapies include:
>Cognitive-behavioral therapy seeks to help patients recognize, avoid, and cope with the situations in which they’re most likely to use drugs.
>Contingency management uses positive reinforcement such as providing rewards or privileges for remaining drug-free, for attending and participating in counseling sessions, or for taking treatment medications as prescribed.
>Motivational enhancement therapy uses strategies to make the most of people’s readiness to change their behavior and enter treatment.
>Family therapy helps people (especially young people) with drug use problems, as well as their families, address influences on drug use patterns, and improve overall family functioning.
To everyone reading this, I urge you to give awareness to the people around you about this deadly disease and how to overcome it because change starts one person at a time.