What is a drug? Any substance, other than food that when taken into the body alters the structure in some way.
Who controls the drug use in America? Food and Drug Administration (FDA): All legal drugs must be inspected and approved by the FDA before they can be made available to the public. It usually takes 5+ years for a drug to be approved. Over the Counter Drugs (OTC) Prescription Drugs (Rx)
Designer Drugs Illegal drugs that are NOT FDA approved and is often made in garages or basements by people with little or no medical background. Ecstasy MPTP Methamphetamine
Stimulants Drugs that excite the Central Nervous System Examples: – Adderall, Ritalin, and Cocaine
Stimulants Continued…. Medical Uses: – Can reduce ADHD symptoms and increase focus and attention in people who have ADHD. Health Risks: – Abuse of prescription stimulants can increase heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature. – Stimulant medications can decrease sleep and appetite, and abuse can lead to malnutrition and its consequences
Depressants Slows the activity of vital organs Examples: – Valium, Mebaral, and Librium
Depressants Medical Use: – Used for treatment of anxiety and sleep disorders Health Risks: – Easy to become addicted to. – When going through withdrawals the brain speeds up and can cause seizures.
Hallucinogens What are Hallucinogens? – Drugs that produce behavioral changes that are often multiple and dramatic. Examples: – LSD, mushrooms, and Ecstasy Health Risks – memory loss, difficulties with speech and thinking, depression, and weight loss
Narcotics What are Narcotics? – Drugs used medicinally to relieve pain. Examples: – Heroin, Morphine, Opium Health Risks: – Drowsiness, respiratory depression, constricted pupils, restlessness and nausea
Marijuana What is Marijuana? – It’s a mind altering drug. Other names: – Pot, grass, and Mary Jane
Marijuana Health Risks: – Short term: problems with memory, loss of coordination, increased heart rate – Long term: Marijuana has long term effects on the brain, heart, and lungs.
Inhalants What is Inhalants? – Drugs in the forms of gases, aerosols, or solvents that are breathed in and absorbed through the lungs. Examples: glues, gasoline, hairspray bottles, and marking pens Health Risks: – nausea, sneezing, coughing, nosebleeds, fatigue, lack of coordination, loss of appetite, and brain damage
Aren’t Prescription Drugs Safer Than Illegal Drugs, such as Cocaine or Heroin? Many people think that abusing prescription drugs is safer than abusing illicit drugs like heroin because the manufacturing of prescription drugs is regulated or because they are prescribed by doctors. That’s true, but it doesn’t mean that these drugs are safe for someone who was not prescribed the drug or when they are taken in ways other than as prescribed. Prescription drugs can have powerful effects in the brain and body, and they act on the same brain sites as illicit drugs. painkillers act on the same sites in the brain as heroin; prescription stimulants have effects in common with cocaine. And people sometimes take the medications in ways that can be very dangerous in both the short and long term (e.g., crushing pills and snorting or injecting the contents). Also, abusing prescription drugs is illegal—and that includes sharing prescriptions with friends.