COMMONEST DRUGS FREQUENTLY ABUSED, THEIR SIDE EFFECTS AND DANGERS - MyHealth MyPride

Drug abuse has become a major public health concern, with millions of people worldwide struggling with addiction. The abuse of drugs can have a range of negative effects, from physical and mental health problems to social and financial consequences.

Understanding the most commonly abused drugs is crucial in preventing and treating drug addiction. Opioids, for example, are highly addictive drugs that can cause respiratory depression, coma, and death. Stimulants such as cocaine and amphetamines can cause heart problems, seizures, and psychosis. Depressants like alcohol and benzodiazepines can lead to respiratory failure, coma, and death.

Hallucinogens like LSD and PCP can cause intense hallucinations, paranoia, and psychotic behavior. These drugs can also cause long-lasting changes in perception and mood, leading to persistent psychological problems.

Despite the dangers associated with drug abuse, many people continue to use these substances. Some may start using drugs for recreational purposes, while others may turn to drugs as a means of coping with stress, anxiety, or other mental health problems.

Fortunately, there is hope for those struggling with drug addiction. Treatment options are available, including counseling, medication-assisted therapy, and support groups. Seeking help for drug addiction is not a sign of weakness but a courageous step towards a healthier and happier life.

In this article, we will provide an overview of the most commonly abused drugs, their side effects, and dangers. We will also discuss the treatment options available for those struggling with drug addiction. Our goal is to provide readers with the knowledge and resources necessary to make informed decisions and seek help if needed.

 1. DICLOFENAC

A lot of people pop these pills for pains, menstrual pains and bone pains the so called “RHEUMATISM”

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Ulcers

2. Internal bleeding

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3. Heart attack

4. Stroke in the Brain

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5. Liver damage

6. Kidney damage

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2. POSTINOR

This is now like Tomtom in people’s purses and bags. A common oral contraceptive used by sexually active women to prevent pregnancy.

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Abnormal menstruation

2. Painful menses

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3. Bleeding

4. Hair loss

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5. Headache

6. Increased chances of Breast cancer.

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 3. FELVIN

The drug is Piroxicam. It belongs to a class called NSAIDS (Just like Diclofenac). It is used during Menstruation for Menstrual pains by a lot of women

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Ulcer

2. Hypertension

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3. Hearing problem

4. Kidney damage

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5. Problems with the Pancreas

6. Liver damage.

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 4. COUGH SYRUP

You will wonder why Cough syrups are a best seller in Pharmacies, especially the ones with Codeine. Has various constituents but lot of people take it like Fanta & mix in drinks

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Psychiatry problems like Hallucinations, Delusions

2. Addiction

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3. Sudden death

 5. IBUPROFEN

Common pain medicine taken by lot of people. Common also among elderly when they say they have “Rheumatism”

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When misused, it can cause:

1. Internal bleeding

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2. Hypertension

3. Heart attack

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4. It can trigger an asthmatic attack

5. Kidney failure

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6. Increases your risk of Abortion (controversial)

 6. COFFEE

Coffee contains Caffeine it has become like daily water for some people.

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Executives, students & anyone who wants to stay alert have experimented

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Hypertension

2. Sleep problems

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3. Anxiety

4. Headache

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5. Abnormal beating of the heart

6. Not safe in Pregnancy

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7. TETRACYCLINE

Common one is Doxycycline a lot of people admitted to using it for ‘toilet infection’ (so called) and abortion

When misused, it can cause:

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1. Liver damage

2. Skin problems

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3. Hearing problem

4. It crosses the Placenta and damages the baby’s bone and teeth

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5. A No No if you’re pregnant.

8. VITAMIN C

It might look like that small orange pill or sweet white pills. It is like Chewing gum for some people

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When misused, it can cause:

1. Excess and overdose of it can increase your chances of having a Kidney stone which can damage the Kidneys.

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Especially when one has a background kidney problem.

9. PARACETAMOL

One of the most available pain killers and with just 100 naira, you can purchase it.

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Some people even use it in cooking meat to make Meat tender/soft, which is too wrong.and dangerous for the health.

When Paracetamol is overused, it can cause:

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1. Liver damage

2. Kidney damage.

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Also, be careful with paracetamol in children.

10. FLAGYL

This is one of the most abused Antibiotics. People take it like they are taking candy bars. Any small diarrhoea, they take it without allowing their system to actually get rid of what triggered the changes.

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Some side effects if abused are:

1. It can reduce the blood cells count.

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2. It can damage the brain and nerves

3. Not best safe early in Pregnancy

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4. It has controversial link to Cancer in Animals.

11. ALABUKUN

Alabukun powder contains aspirin and caffeine. A lot of persons use it for pain relief, especially bricklayers and heavy duty workers.

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Some dangers if abused:

1. Ulcers

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2. Bleeding

3. Liver damage

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4. Kidney damage

5. Heart attack

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6. Hypertension.

7. One can even bleed to death

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12. AMPICLOX

It contains Ampicillin and Cloxacillin. It is now a drug people run to ‘flush’ their system after sex, abortion or treat so called “Toilet infections”.

Some dangers if abused:

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1. Dangerous in people with penicillin allergy.(Bad reactions)

2. Seizures

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3. Damage the muscles

4. Kidney problems.

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13. CYPROHEPTADINE

Common brand is Cypri Gold. People have abused it, because it can stimulate appetite, in a bid to gain weight.

Some dangers if abused:

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1. It can affect blood cells

2. Damage the liver

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3. Cause poor sleep

4. Abnormal hand shaking

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5. Ringing in ears

6. Mess your menses up

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7. Low blood pressure.

14. LEXOTHAN

One of the most abused drugs worldwide in a bid to get good sleep. It sedates

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Some dangers if abused:

1. It can be addictive

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2. Dizziness and memory problem,

3. Reduce libido,

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4. Liver damage

Stopping it suddenly after long abuse is also dangerous (See a Doctor to guide you ).

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15. TRAMADOL

Tramadol is meant to be a tightly regulated drug, but sadly even with little amount of money you  can get it on the streets.

Some dangers if abused:

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1. Addiction can cut off your breathing

2. Seizures

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3. Seeing things not there

4. Headache,

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5. Anxiety.

16. COCAINE

Effects: Cocaine is a powerful stimulant that can cause increased heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature. It can also cause feelings of euphoria, energy, and confidence. However, repeated use can lead to addiction, anxiety, paranoia, and heart problems.

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17. Misused Drug: MARIJUANA

Effects: Marijuana is a psychoactive drug that can cause feelings of relaxation, euphoria, and altered sensory perception. However, it can also cause impaired memory and concentration, anxiety, and paranoia. Regular use can lead to addiction and negative impacts on mental health.

18. Misused Drug: Methamphetamine

Effects: Methamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant that can cause increased heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature. It can also cause feelings of euphoria, energy, and alertness. However, repeated use can lead to addiction, paranoia, hallucinations, and physical harm to the body.

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19. Misused Drug: PRESCRIPTION OPIOIDS

Effects: Prescription opioids, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, are powerful painkillers that can cause feelings of euphoria and relaxation. However, they can also lead to addiction, respiratory depression, and overdose. Long-term use can also lead to physical dependence and withdrawal symptoms.

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20. Misused Drug: BENZODIAZEPINES

Effects: Benzodiazepines, such as Xanax and Valium, are a class of prescription drugs used to treat anxiety and insomnia. They can cause feelings of relaxation and calmness. However, they can also lead to addiction, drowsiness, and impaired coordination. Long-term use can also lead to physical dependence and withdrawal symptoms.

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21. Misused Drug: SYNTHETIC CANNABINOIDS

Effects: Synthetic cannabinoids, also known as “spice” or “K2,” are chemical compounds that are similar to THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. They can cause feelings of euphoria and altered sensory perception. However, they can also lead to anxiety, paranoia, hallucinations, and seizures. Long-term use can also lead to addiction and negative impacts on mental health.

22. Misused Drug: INHALANTS

Effects: Inhalants, such as paint thinner and gasoline, are chemical substances that are inhaled to produce a euphoric effect. They can cause feelings of lightheadedness and dizziness. However, they can also lead to damage to the brain, heart, liver, and kidneys. Long-term use can also lead to addiction and negative impacts on mental health.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

What are the side effects of drug abuse?

The side effects of drug abuse can vary depending on the type of drug being used. Common side effects of drug abuse include physical and mental health problems, such as respiratory depression, heart problems, seizures, psychosis, and long-lasting changes in perception and mood. Drug abuse can also have social and financial consequences, such as strained relationships, job loss, and financial instability.

What are the dangers of drug abuse?

Drug abuse can have serious and potentially life-threatening consequences. The dangers of drug abuse include overdose, which can result in coma or death, as well as the risk of contracting infectious diseases like HIV and hepatitis from sharing needles. Drug abuse can also lead to physical and mental health problems, social and financial consequences, and legal problems.

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How do opioids affect the body?

Opioids affect the body by binding to specific receptors in the brain and spinal cord, reducing pain perception and producing feelings of euphoria. Opioid use can also cause respiratory depression, a slowing of breathing that can result in coma or death. Long-term opioid use can lead to physical dependence and addiction.

What are the long-term effects of stimulant abuse?

Long-term stimulant abuse can have a range of negative effects on the body and mind. These effects can include heart problems, such as irregular heartbeat and high blood pressure, seizures, stroke, and psychosis. Stimulant abuse can also lead to addiction, and withdrawal from stimulants can cause symptoms like fatigue, depression, and anxiety.

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Can drug addiction be treated?

Yes, drug addiction can be treated. Treatment for drug addiction typically involves a combination of counseling, medication-assisted therapy, and support groups. The goal of treatment is to help individuals overcome physical dependence on drugs, manage withdrawal symptoms, and learn coping strategies to avoid relapse.

What are the different treatment options for drug addiction?

There are several different treatment options for drug addiction, including inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs, medication-assisted therapy, individual and group counseling, and support groups like Narcotics Anonymous. The type of treatment that is most appropriate for an individual will depend on their specific needs and the severity of their addiction. It is important to work with a healthcare provider to determine the best course of treatment.

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What are the warning signs of drug addiction?

The warning signs of drug addiction can vary depending on the type of drug being used, but may include physical symptoms like dilated pupils, weight loss, and poor hygiene; behavioral changes like social withdrawal, changes in mood, and poor performance at work or school; and legal or financial problems like arrests or unpaid bills. It is important to seek help if you or a loved one is experiencing any of these warning signs.

How can drug addiction be prevented?

Preventing drug addiction involves education, communication, and early intervention. Educating individuals about the risks and consequences of drug abuse can help prevent drug addiction. Communication between parents and children, as well as between healthcare providers and patients, can also help prevent drug addiction. Early intervention, such as identifying and treating mental health problems, can help prevent drug addiction from developing.

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What are the effects of alcohol abuse?

Alcohol abuse can have a range of negative effects on the body and mind. These effects can include liver damage, pancreatitis, heart disease, and an increased risk of cancer. Alcohol abuse can also lead to addiction and withdrawal symptoms like tremors, anxiety, and seizures.

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How does drug abuse affect mental health?

Drug abuse can have negative effects on mental health, including mood disorders like depression and anxiety, psychosis, and cognitive impairment. Drug abuse can also exacerbate pre-existing mental health problems, making them more difficult to manage.

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Can prescription drugs be abused?

Yes, prescription drugs can be abused. Prescription drugs, such as opioids, benzodiazepines, and stimulants, can be highly addictive and are often abused by individuals who do not have a legitimate medical need for them. Prescription drug abuse can lead to physical and mental health problems, as well as social and financial consequences.

What is medication-assisted therapy?

Medication-assisted therapy is a treatment approach that uses medications to manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings during drug addiction treatment. These medications can include opioid agonists like methadone, which mimic the effects of opioids without producing a euphoric high, and medications that block the effects of opioids like naloxone. Medication-assisted therapy is often used in combination with counseling and support groups to treat drug addiction.

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How effective is drug addiction treatment?

Drug addiction treatment can be highly effective in helping individuals overcome addiction and achieve long-term recovery. The effectiveness of drug addiction treatment can depend on a range of factors, including the severity of addiction, the type of treatment, and the individual’s willingness to participate in treatment. Studies have shown that individuals who receive drug addiction treatment are more likely to achieve and maintain sobriety than those who do not receive treatment.

How long does drug addiction treatment typically last?

The duration of drug addiction treatment can vary depending on the individual’s specific needs and the severity of their addiction. Some individuals may require short-term treatment, such as a detoxification program, while others may require longer-term treatment, such as an inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation program. The length of treatment can also depend on the type of treatment, with some programs lasting several weeks or months, and others lasting several years.

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Are there support groups for individuals with drug addiction?

Yes, there are support groups available for individuals with drug addiction. Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is a well-known support group that follows a 12-step program to help individuals achieve and maintain sobriety. Other support groups, such as SMART Recovery and Celebrate Recovery, offer alternative approaches to recovery. Support groups can be a valuable resource for individuals in recovery, providing a sense of community and support.

What is the difference between physical dependence and addiction?

Physical dependence and addiction are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. Physical dependence occurs when an individual’s body adapts to the presence of a drug, and withdrawal symptoms occur if the drug is discontinued. Addiction, on the other hand, involves compulsive drug use despite negative consequences. While physical dependence can be a component of addiction, addiction is characterized by a psychological and behavioral component that goes beyond physical dependence.

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Can drug addiction cause permanent damage to the body?

Yes, drug addiction can cause permanent damage to the body. Prolonged drug abuse can lead to a range of physical health problems, including liver and kidney damage, heart disease, and brain damage. Drug abuse can also lead to mental health problems and cognitive impairment. It is important to seek help for drug addiction as early as possible to prevent permanent damage to the body and mind.

How can family and friends support someone with drug addiction?

Family and friends can support someone with drug addiction by providing emotional support, encouraging them to seek treatment, and helping them navigate the recovery process. It is important for family and friends to set healthy boundaries and avoid enabling behavior, such as providing money or drugs. Support groups for family members, such as Al-Anon or Nar-Anon, can also be a valuable resource for loved ones of individuals with drug addiction.

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What should I do if I suspect someone I know is abusing drugs?

If you suspect someone you know is abusing drugs, it is important to approach the situation with empathy and understanding. Express your concerns and encourage the individual to seek help. Offer to help them find resources, such as a healthcare provider or support group. If the individual is resistant to seeking help, consider reaching out to a healthcare provider or addiction specialist for guidance on how to proceed.

Bottom Line

The misuse of drugs can have serious and potentially life-threatening consequences. It is important to be aware of the commonly misused drugs and their effects in order to prevent their abuse. The drugs listed above, such as opioids, benzodiazepines, and synthetic cannabinoids, can lead to addiction, physical harm, and negative impacts on mental health.

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According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, approximately 19.3 million people in the United States aged 12 or older had a substance use disorder in 2020. This highlights the need for increased awareness, education, and resources for those struggling with drug addiction.

It is important to seek help if you or someone you know is struggling with drug misuse. Treatment options, such as therapy and medication-assisted treatment, can help individuals overcome addiction and achieve long-term recovery. Let’s work together to raise awareness about the dangers of drug misuse and support those in need of help.

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