Saturday, December 23, 2017

Intoxication: From Fun to Death!

Hello Everyone,

If you are reading my blog regularly, then you might know that I am a Medical Language Specialist, I work on patient’s healthcare records.  I edit a lot of files on daily basis and come across a number of files of patients who are addicted to some or other substances.  Even I know few people in person, who smokes cigarettes, drink alcohol, use cannabis and hookah and are addicted to that.  I wonder why people don’t understand that it’s something that will ruin their lives; just for the sake of temporary fun and enjoyment, they put their lives at stake.  People think that consuming substance is a pride, but I believe, " it's not a pride, it's devastation” and education plays a vital role in preventing substance abuse.  So here I come with an article on substance abuse, what are they, their effects and preventions.  So, just read on.

Substance abuse also known as drug abuse refers to the use or misuse of any substance for wrong and harmful purposes.  Tobacco and alcohol are two of such substances which are abused abundantly.  There are number of other substance, categorized as drugs, which are used for medicinal purposes.  These are cannabis (marijuana), nicotine (cigarettes, cigars, snuff, and tobacco), cocaine (crack), amphetamines, tranquilizers (sleeping pills), inhalants (aerosol, glue, paint thinner), opium, codeine, heroin, morphine, and LSD.

All the aforementioned drugs are psychoactive drugs and they are divided into four types i.e. depressants, stimulants, opiates, and hallucinogens.
* Alcohol, cannabis, nicotine, minor tranquilizers (benzodiazepines), and inhalants are examples of depressants.
* Nicotine, amphetamines, and cocaine are examples of stimulants.
* Heroin, codeine, painkillers are examples of opiates.
* LSD and cannabis are examples of hallucinogens.

Amongst these, alcohol is drunk while cannabis is smoked.  Nicotine is also smoked and inhaled while opiates are taken orally except in case of heroin which is inhaled.  The fumes of cocaine are also inhaled after burning it.  Cocaine is injected into the bloodstream for quick effects.  Inhalants, as the name goes, are inhaled, while tranquilizers and LSD are swallowed.  On the other hand, amphetamines are injected, taken orally and inhaled too.

They are prescribed by physicians and the use of such prescriptions do a lot of good when taken in limits.  Nevertheless, deliberately or in-deliberately misuse of these drugs leads to very harmful effects and in many cases leads to addiction from which it’s quite difficult to withdraw yourself.  And most of the abuses begin in-deliberately due to lack of information or negligence.

    Related Post:  Dealing with Chronic Pain     

The individuals who consume these vary between the young and the old, educated and the illiterate, the male and the female, the urban and the rural.  Of course, all of them have their own different reasons for taking such substances at the initial stages, before addiction set in.

Some people use it to relax and forget the problem, other use it to relieve the stress.  Some use it for being accepted by their peers, other use it just for the enjoyment purpose and some are induced by people around them and some take it for making a bold statement in a conservative society.  Though, there is nothing bold in doing such things.  And in some cases, self-medication also leads to such drug addictions, which is also the very common cause.

Whether you have started using drugs without thinking about any harm to your body or thinking that it won’t become a problem as you are using it occasionally, however it may still affect your health or I would say mental health.  The more you take a drug, the more your body builds up a tolerance to its same effects and this can lead to the need of taking a large number of doses to obtain the effects of the drug.  And that is what known as dependence or excessive reliance on drugs.  Drug dependence can rapidly begin to affect your physical and psychological health, and can also affect your social and work life.

Different kinds of drugs affect your body in different ways.  You may feel differently, behave differently, and think differently if you have taken drugs.  And you may make efforts to control your actions and thoughts.

Effects of Drugs Abuse:

There are short-term and long-term effects that can occur when you take substance/drugs.  The effects related to drugs can vary from person to person.

1.  Depressants:
Short-term effects:  Slow brain function, poor concentration, confusion, fatigue, dizziness, lack of coordination, disorientation, depression, slowed pulse and breathing, lowered blood pressure, slurred speech, fever, sluggishness, visual disturbances, dilated pupils, and difficulty or inability to urinate.
Long-term effects:  Depression, chronic fatigue, breathing difficulties, sleep problems and sexual problems.
2.  Stimulants:
Short-term effects:  Intense feelings of happiness, relaxation, increased energy/sociability and self-esteem, improved attention, opened breathing passages/easier breathing, increased sexual desire and performance, and suppressed appetite.
Long-term effects:  Extreme weight loss, breathing problems, headaches, gastrointestinal problems, cardiovascular damage, cerebral hemorrhage, stroke, seizure, muscle deterioration, chronic exhaustion, and reduced sexual functioning.
3.  Opiates or narcotics:
Short-term effects:  Euphoria followed by lack of concern or interest, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, itching skin, slowed thinking and movements, attention problems, memory impairments, drowsiness, slurred speech, pinpoint pupils, and coma.
Long-term effects:  Severe constipation and related gastrointestinal conditions (e.g., bowel obstruction, bowel perforation), irregular menses in women, and sexual dysfunction.  Intravenous consequences:  Abscesses, Tuberculosis, HIV or hepatitis virus contraction, infection of the heart lining, cellulitis, peripheral edema, and track lines or puncture marks.  Intranasal effects:  Nasal bleeding, irritation of nasal lining, and perforation of nasal septum.
4.  Hallucinogens:
Short-term effects:  Euphoria, sense of relaxation and well-being, confusion and difficulty concentrating, thinking or maintaining attention, anxiety, agitation, blurred vision, disorganized thoughts, dizziness, loss of coordination, increased breathing rate, increased heart rate and blood pressure, irregular heartbeat and palpitations, nausea and vomiting,  increased body temperature and sweating (may alternate with chills and shivering), paranoia and feelings of panic, numbness, hallucinations and distorted perception including visual, auditory, body, time and space.
Long-term effects:  Flashbacks weeks, months, or even years after the drug use.  Flashbacks may be pleasant or a living nightmare.  Most flashbacks last a very short time, only a minute or two, decreased motivation, prolonged depression, increased panic, impaired memory and concentration, possible severe mental disturbances, psychosis, increased delusions, bad trips may last hours, weeks, and even months.

Preventative Measures:

It is really difficult to overcome the drug addiction, but there are few things that you can do in order to prevent yourself from falling into the grips of drugs that includes:
  • Balance your life and deal with its pressure.
  • Build strong bonds and surround yourself with support.
  • Develop hobbies that give satisfaction.
  • Choose your friends carefully.
  • Effectively deal with peer pressure.
  • Seek help for mental illness.
  • Examine the risk factors/warning signs.
  • Keep a well-balanced life.
  • Limit negative influences.
  • Set and work toward goals.
  • Learn about the consequences of drug use.
  • Abstain from going to places which are associated with substance use/abuse.
  • Take part in community anti-drug, tobacco and alcohol programs.

If you’re reading this because you are addicted or if you’re scared that you’re at risk of developing a substance use disorder or some other dependence/ addiction (to gambling, technology, or food, for example), following the aforementioned preventative measures will increase the feeling of self-worth and confidence and can do a lot to improve the odds and will help you to stay addiction-free.  However, if one feels a sense of addition then think it’s time to consider seeking treatment.  One must take immediate help of a family member, friend and then subsequently of a trained doctor in this area.

Stay Blessed, Be Happy..!! :-)

Disclaimer:  This website does not promote, recommend, or endorse drugs or related substances.  My interest is in the information about dangers coming from lack of knowledge, so this is solely for informational purpose.


  1. Hey Thanks for sharing this. Though i'm an active smoker, reading your article made me realise "what the hell am i doing". you've always been an eye opener to me ;)

  2. Ive recently taken a class on substance abuse, research substance abuse as it relates to suicide, and majored in Psychobiology. In general i am obsessed with this blog. Thanks!

  3. I love the preventative measures you listed! Very helpful for all individuals!

  4. This is really great information and very helpful for any people who are going through this but are afraid of getting any help. Thank you for sharing.

  5. This is such an important post! I'm one of those people who's never seen any sense at getting drunk at parties, or experimenting with cigarettes or drugs. And as someone with a hereditary connective tissue disorder that causes significant pain, I have had to face the pain medication issue. I've chosen to develop a dynamic and diverse set of strategies to deal with pain because I won't run the risk of becoming addicted to or dependent on a medication. It's a public health crisis and a huge problem for both doctors and patients alike.

  6. Thanks for this wonderful post.. this is helpful for people going through this challenges.


  7. All of these things scare me so much as a parent. I have 4 teens and I talk with them about these worries all the time.

  8. This is such an important and informative post for people going through depression and challenges.
    Keep the good wrk coming in.

    -prajakta hagwane

  9. Thanks for sharing this very informative article. I have often wonder how a person would even start drugs knowing what can happen long-term. I mean we have seen people who are addicted to drunks and that alone would prevent me form taking drugs.
    I understand too well how addictive pain killers can be from a family member who have problems with drugs. I have cervical spine issues and I was scared to take any meds ( I still have the meds). I am trying not to take it --only as a last resort. I am still trying to understand why someone would even start taking drugs such as herione or cocaine knowing that they can be addictive and what will happen

  10. Sad to say millions of people are in drug addiction case, we've always heard that artists like those popular ones have this problems as well as those with depression issue but using drugs is not the answer at all with all their dilemmas in life. This is a good way to bring awareness to people! lovely post I'll surely share it!

  11. This is a very sensitive issue and it shouldn't be taken for granted. Great tips on how to prevent it. Kudos!

  12. I hope that this will get to many people. Addiction is not an easy thing to break as many people who are addicted to this substances find this comforting without realizing how it is destroying them.
    Great post Preeti.

  13. I learned so much about depressants in this post. I wasn't aware of all of the categories. Drugs definitely aren't the answer.

  14. This article is a great read for those who don't understand addiction and for those who are struggling with addiction. I learned a lot I didn't already know by reading this. Very good post!

  15. It is so sad to hear of all the addictions there are. I know where we live there are so many young teens that get hooked on pain killers.

  16. This was such a great read. Addiction can be brutal for both those addicted and their friends and family. I learned a lot from this.

  17. I had seen a lot of drug users. There lives was all been miserable. They lost people who loves them. They do somethings that destroys there family. And one of them was my father but i am glad that he is doing well right now and starting his new life to get better.

  18. A very important point. Drugs have become a serious issue today - and most concerning thing is that it is hurting the youths. There has to be much bigger awareness on drug abuse. Thank You

  19. THIS is very important, I have had friends severely affected by drug use. It’s good that it’s consequences are getting recognised.

  20. Sharing this article because I know there are people who are struggling and can use these helpful tips.

  21. This is a great post and worth sharing. I know a lot of people who have got in trap of this evil and before they realized, it was already too late.

  22. Such an important message. I think many of us know someone who is struggling with addiction.

  23. So many promising futures are lost because of drug abuse. Preeti, thanks for writing this very sensitive but important post.

  24. Majorly the first time people introduced to intoxication for fun, specially youth. Somehow smoking and drinking is taken for granted in our society, which is really sad. Your post is really well articulated. A detail study about it gives awarness. Drug abuse cases spreading in youth and teenage the most, let's hope we create more awarness so we can stop it in early stage only.

  25. Very informative with extensive details. Yes iam also regular smoker and an occasional drinker.Many times i have tried quit smoking but kept posponding it

  26. Such an informative post. At many places people indulge in it as a part of fun and then end up in weird substance abuse.

  27. A very informative post and you have highlighted some genuine points that can help prevent and treat this menace .

  28. This is a very informative post. I know some who smoke hash or are involved in substance abuse only because it looks cool, in spite of knowing that it is harming their bodies!!

  29. YOu gave alot of truly great food for thought in this post. Great share.

  30. This is such a sensitive and relevant post and all youth should definitely read it, drugs may sound fun but the crude reality and after affects are just so life threatening.

  31. I did several modules about drug addiction in my psychology course including the neurobiology. I find it really fascinating how a conscious choice to take a drug one day can lead to dependence and addiction.

  32. This was so informative. I grew up around a lot of addiction and studied it a lot over the years and this was one of the best and most comprehensive overviews I have seen. Thank you for spreading this knowledge!


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