Category : Health
Drug addiction isn’t about just substances like heroin, cocaine, morphine, or other illegal drugs. You can get addicted to alcohol, nicotine, sleeping pills, anti-anxiety medications and other legal substances too.

To begin with, drug addiction is not a disease as it may seem to many people. It is a psychological disorder that attracts a person to use excessively. Even though the person knows that it will harm his entire body he cannot stop himself from using drugs. Once he starts using he’ll get addicted more and more which ruins everything including health, emotions, financial health, family problems and others. Once a person is addicted he cannot quit that easily even if he wants to be.

Drug addiction isn’t about just substances like heroin, cocaine, morphine, or other illegal drugs. You can get addicted to alcohol, nicotine, sleeping pills, antianxiety medications and other legal substances too.

How Drugs Affect the Brain : Our brain attracts us to do things which we are more interested in. It is like if we are interested in doing good things and make a daily routine for that it will push us towards that and if we intend to do any negative things it will take us towards that which will probably damage our entire life. If anyone is addicted to drugs it will mainly target the brain. They flood your brain with a chemical called dopamine. This triggers a feeling of intense pleasure. So you might get more interested in taking drugs and you think that the other things you enjoy like spending time with family, enjoying homely food, hanging out with family or friends etc. may give you less pleasure. When anyone consumes drugs for a long time it can change their brain’s chemical system. These brain changes can drive you to take drugs beyond your control.

Who’s more likely to become addicted ?

Nowadays teenagers are more likely to get addicted to drugs. The reason behind this is due to negligence of their own health or lack of knowledge about its side effects. Even if they have knowledge about its damages they are still addicted to drugs:

By watching movies or movie posters which promote bad content.

• Some are getting addicted as their fellow mates do and if they don’t consume it would be a huge damage to their reputation.

• Some are getting addicted by seeing their parents or siblings.

• Some are forcibly getting addicted.

• If anyone has family troubles and if they aren’t close to anyone in the family to share the things with them then there are higher chances to get addicted to drugs.

• If a person has a history of trauma and is depressed and is worrying constantly then there’s a chance to become a drug addict.

Case study :

A 16-year-old adolescent male with a normal birth history and developmental milestones and belonging to low socioeconomic status was brought to the outpatient department by his mother who permitted and consented along with the child in writing the report, complained that the child was smelling a rubber-based adhesive using a handkerchief since the last 3 years. There was a significant family history of alcohol dependence in the father. There was no history of fever, head injury, seizure or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. There was no history of stress, tension or depressive thoughts. After acute ingestion of Polychloroprene based solvent; the adolescent complained of tinnitus, slurring of speech, restlessness tremors, dizziness and ataxia. During the phase of withdrawal, there was coprolalia (uncontrollable use of obscene language)with assaultive and abusive behaviour, increasing fights, and headaches. These symptoms increased in severity; which compelled the parent to seek help. In addition, excessive tearing in the morning, headaches, decreased cognitive ability were the prominent symptoms in the morning due to withdrawal. After obtaining a detailed history, it was found that there was no confusion, visual hallucinations and/or seizure. Alcohol abuse began approximately 6 months after the volatile substance abuse, on detailed questioning the child was asked whether he needed to cut down on the drinking behaviour, his annoyance, guilt and use of alcohol eye opener in the morning the response was positive for ¾ of the questions. He further added that the alcohol abuse began when the patient’s friend circle changed to include more people of a higher age group. The patient used to steal money from his house in order to fetch the abused substance. The child was a school dropout as he faced an inability to concentrate and low scores at school. Moreover, he often was involved in assaultive behavior at school.

Alcohol abuse in India too is rising rapidly.

In the 1980s, the first age of alcohol use was reported to be 28 years; but this has now fallen to 17 years in 2007. Alcohol intoxication also has several dire consequences. These include poor judgement, impaired coordination, ataxia, nausea, vomiting, euphoria and slurring of speech. Withdrawal from alcohol consumption can lead to development of anxiety, difficulty with sleep, autonomic instability, hallucinations and seizures; called delirium tremens. Alcohol abuse in children manifests as difficult behaviour in school, social impairment, inability to learn and the development of conduct disorder can also occur. A consumption of 40 g of pure alcohol in a day by men and 20 g of pure alcohol in day by women falls under the criteria for heavy drinking; causing harm to health.
Illicit Trafficking : It is the distribution of drugs, stolen goods or something by illegal means. Section 3 of the Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1988 empowers the government to detain a person to prevent him from engaging in illicit traffic in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, or World Drug Day, is marked on 26 June every year, to strengthen action and cooperation in achieving the goal of a world free of drug abuse.

How to control drug addiction :

If you see your loved one or anyone around you suffering from drug addiction you shouldn’t abuse or shame them. Instead, we have to help them to come out of this.

1. Be a good role model and try to explain to them the damages that would bring in their life if they wouldn’t stop using drugs.

2. If their friend circle is bad, try to give them the advice to change their friend circle.

3. If he’s a teenager then it’s their parent’s responsibility to observe the changes in their child. If there are any negative changes then it’s their duty to explain to him and try to get him out of this in a positive manner.

4. If anyone in the family is a drug or alcohol addict don’t consume it in front of your young children as it would bring a negative impact on the child. And try to stop consuming.

If your drug use is out of control or causing problems, talk to your doctor. Getting better from drug addiction can take time. There’s no cure but treatment can help you stop using drugs and stay drug-free. Talk to your doctor to figure out the best plan for you.

“Drug addiction can cause a lot of diseases and disabilities. It may lead to social, physical, emotional and job-related problems. Addiction is when you can’t stop. Not when it puts your health in danger. Not when it causes financial, emotional and other problems for you and your loved ones. Try to understand the blessing of good health and don’t ruin it by getting addicted to drugs. Young people especially should be good role models in our society”.

Drugs take away the dream from every child’s heart and replace it with a nightmare. There’s a big, wonderful world there for you, exciting, stimulating and rewarding… “Say yes to life” and when it comes to drugs and alcohol just “Say NO” – Nancy Reagan


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