We explain what drugs are, how they are classified, and the effects they produce. Also, what are its characteristics and consequences?
The term drugs is used generically for all those substances that have the potential to cause changes when introduced into the body . For example, medicines and drugs are drugs. Illegal drugs, narcotics or narcotics are those substances for recreational use capable of creating addiction and inducing altered states of consciousness.
This last type of substance has been consumed by humanity since ancient times , having a ritual or social use. In modern societies they have proliferated mainly in laboratory versions with much more intense and dangerous chemical properties.
As a consequence, by the middle of the 20th century they were mostly declared illegal . The exceptions to this prohibition were alcohol and tobacco, with which the West has been more tolerant. However, in the religions of the Middle East , alcohol is totally prohibited.
As a result of its illegalization, certain countries such as Mexico and the United States declared the “war on drugs” . It consists of a series of national and international operations to combat drug trafficking. Unfortunately, despite (or because of) their illegality, drugs are among the most lucrative businesses in the world.
The prohibition is based on the fact that the presence of these illicit substances in societies generate individual and social harm . Among other things, they affect the crime rate and public health. In some cases, however, there is talk of legalizing them in order to better control them, transferring their administration to regulated institutions.
Some drugs come from plants , fungi , and animals .
Human beings have had access to them since early times , such as marijuana or hallucinogenic mushrooms.
Other drugs, on the other hand, more modern, have a synthetic origin , the product of chemical reactions in laboratories.
The design of these drugs aims, in many cases, to make them more violent and addictive . Such is the case with heroin or ecstasy.
There are different ways of classifying drugs. In the first place, they can be divided according to their origin, natural or synthetic, as we saw earlier. They can also be distinguished by their level of social acceptance:
For example, limited alcohol consumption in adults may only cause relaxation. While in children or adolescents it can severely affect the development of the nervous system .
Other substances, such as heroin, cut the connection with the real world and unleash pleasurable but artificial sensations . This is one of the causes of addiction: they offer an escape from the real world that can only be sustained through new use.
The problem with "hard" or illegal drugs is that they generate a great dependency burden on the individual who uses them. In part this is due to psychological or emotional characteristics. But mainly it is due to uncontrollable brain chemical reactions for the individual.
As soon as the substance is no longer present in the individual, an unpleasant sensation known as “withdrawal syndrome” is generated. To avoid this, subjects can subject themselves or others to any kind of harm or humiliation, since they have become slaves to the substance.
Impoverishment, criminal activities, prostitution, and family violence are possible consequences of the drug.
Drug addiction is currently treated as a disease both clinically and socially . It requires assistance and special care, very similar to alcoholism . There are Narcotics Anonymous (NA) groups for this and other forms of support to prevent repeated use.
Once they appear, addictions imply a permanent danger for the individual who suffers from them . Even those people who successfully go through treatment and completely eliminate their use continue to suffer from addiction. That is why those who have had it should avoid any consumption of the substance, no matter how minimal.
As a consequence, it increases the doses to obtain the desired effect . This generates a vicious circle that usually ends in overdose, that is, in the consumption of much more drug than the body can tolerate, causing coma, permanent damage to the body or even death.
The sensation is so painful that most addicts will do anything to avoid it and guarantee their next fix. This makes addiction a form of slavery .
This period involves many physical sufferings . When these decrease, it is recommended to resort to psychotherapy to understand the reasons that pushed consumption in the first place.
Worldwide sales of these banned substances amount to millions of dollars per month . There are many interests in the drug world and, above all, many victims, so it is a difficult issue to resolve.
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