Substance Abuse

By Rui Deng

Symptoms of substance abuse

Substance abuse is a medical problem that affects you by:

-Interfering with your relationship with your family and friends

-abilities at school or work

-legal issues and dangerous activities

Substance abuse can involve taking a substance in large quantities of a substance, going to great lengths to obtain the substance, experiencing withdrawal symptoms when you stop using the substance, or you are unable to quit the use of the substance.Substance use problems is a very complicated medical problem because it effects the brain. Since there is a lot of stigma (shameful feelings) associated with substance abuse problems, health care professionals do not use terms such as "addiction," "addict," and "drug abuse" as but Instead, are using "substance use problems" and "people with substance use problems."

Causes of substance abuse

Almost all substances associated with substance use problems affects your dopamine levels"reward system" within your brain. Each time an individual abuses a substance they achieve a feel good, which makes them want to use the substance again. Eventually from continuous usage, changes in the brain occur such as lower level of dopamine, which lessens the "high" feeling of the substance and larger quantities are required to achieve the same high feeling as before.

The main causes of substance abuse are relativity unknown or reported but several factors within a human can contribute to having substance abuse.Heredity (genetics)is a factor as the risk of substance abuse is higher in individual with family members with a substance problem. An individual's environment and society t, such as school, work, friends, family, and cultural and religious beliefs, can also affect substance use problems. mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression can effect a person as the feelings of stress, sadness and anger can encourage individuals to abuse substances

Physical dependence involves building up tolerance to a substance. This means that more of the drug or substance is needed to obtain the same effect. When people stop taking the substance, they suffer withdrawal symptoms which can include shaking, headaches, and diarrhea. Some Drug withdrawal are so severe it can even be life-threatening. Psychological problems such as depression and anxiety can also occur in an individual during drug withdrawal. Some drugs such as heroin and cocaine which are stimulants, are highly addictive which makes users have a difficult time quit from using.

Psychological dependence is the need of a substance to feel good, get high and function. With psychological dependence, people often crave the substance and will go to great lengths to acquire the substance to for fill their craving.People who have psychological dependence use substances because they experience changes in mood (feeling high), reduce stress and anxiety, feel invincible, heightened sensations such as hearing and stimulation.

Types of Drugs

Prescription Drugs

Prescription drugs are useful when used for the right purpose. They are prescribed by doctors for several sicknesses that are serious therefore the drugs have a strong effect compare to over the counter drugs. Unfortunately, many people who do not require the prescribed drug choose the abuse its powerful effects.
Big image


names: purple drank, lean, sizzurp

Codeine is a cough syrup which is addictive. People use codeine by mixing a drink with it consisting of sprite soda and jolly rancher candies. Codeine provides the user with a slow reaction time, slurred speech, a slower heart rate and the possibility of death.

Big image


names: Kush, grass, weed, marley, tree,pot

The active ingredient in marijuana is THC (delta-9-tetrahyrdrocannabinol). THC targets specific receptors in our brains in three areas which affect memory and learning, balance and coordination, and movement control. The effects of marijuana wears off after an hour or two, but the chemical remains in the brain for days. Marijuana also increases dopamine levels which gives the user a good feeling.Marijuana causes the user provide a user with a slower reaction time, a sense of pleasure, distorted vision and can promote anxiety and panic attacks.

Big image


names: snow, coke, blow, snow, candy,dope

Coccaine is a powerful stimulant drug derived from coca leaves. Cocaine is usually in a powdered form and snorted. Cocaine is a highly addictive drug even after one use.

Some short term effects of cocaine include loss of appetite, increase in heart rate, increase inblood pressur, increase in body temperature, increase in breathing, contracted blood vessel, dilated pupils, change in sleep patterns, nausea,

Short-term effects, hyper stimulation, hallucinations, intense euphoria, convulsion, seizures and death from overdose. Some long effect include severe tooth decay, malnutrition, blood vessel, brain and heart damage, liver, kidney and lung damage, damaged nose tissue, sexual reproduction issues and severe depression.


Big image


Names: scag, brown sugar, black tar

Heroin is an opioid derived from the poppy opium. Regular users of heroin build up tolerance and require more heroine to get high. A lot of heroin users are at risk of AIDS and HIV because of sharing needles or unsanitary needles. The effects of e heroin include, slowed breathing or stop breathing, severe itching and upset stomach and throwing up.

Big image


names: X ecstasy, molly

MDMA, short for 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, is most commonly known as “Ecstasy” or “Molly.” It is a man-made drug that produces energizing effects. Some effects of molly include increase in blood pressure, muscle tension, teeth clenching, nausea, blurred vision, faintness, chills or sweats, high body temperature that can lead to organ failure and increased risk of unsafe sex
Big image

anabolic steroids

names: steroids, roids

Anabolic steroids are a man-made substances related to testosterone (male sex hormone). Doctors use anabolic steroids to treat hormone problems in men, delayed puberty, and muscle loss from some diseases.Body-builders and athletes may use anabolic steroids to build muscles and improve athletic performance.Effects of steroids can effect an individuals health very seriously. Some side effects include severe acne, kidney damage or failure, high blood pressure, enlarged heart, liver disease and high blood pressure. Some effects for males is testicles shrinking, enlarged breasts and greater risk of prostate cancer. Risk in females include, deeper voice, facial hair, male pattern balding, enlarged clitoris, and changes in the mentstrual cycle.

Treatment for Substance Abuse

Treatment for substance abuse can be very difficult because it is hard for an individual to admit they have a substance problem and it is embarrassing and shameful sometimes to seek treatment. However, there are several programs and methods of treatment for substance abuse each with its own type of increased benefits.

Work Cited APA

References,. (2015). Partnership for a Drug Free Canada. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from,. (2015). Substance Abuse in Canada. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from,. (2014). Substance abuse. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from

Partnership for Drug-Free Kids,. (2015). J K L Archives - Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from,. (2013). Illegal Drugs - Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from

Staff, C. (2012). Top 8 Drug Categories. Casa Palmera. Retrieved 1 May 2015, from

Long term residental treatment

Long residential treatment uses a model called therapeutic community. This treatment requires 24 hour care of a patient and a prolonged stay in a treatment centre ranging from 6 months to a year. This form of treatment is very structured and may be tailored to help different individuals. The treatment focuses on the moral of the person and helps them reflect on their past life and get rid of bad habits.

short term residential treatment

Short-term residential programs provide intensive but relatively brief treatment based on a modified 12-step program. This program was first used to treat alcohol another form of substance, addiction. This program involves a short3-6 week treatment in a hospital than further treatment in a self help group such as a AA group.

Outpatient Treatment Programs

Outpatient treatment varies in the types and intensity of services offered. Such treatment costs less than residential or inpatient treatment and often is more suitable for people with jobs or extensive social supports. This treatment is for individuals with a low intensity treatment and the treatments of this method is less intense.

Individual drug counselling

This treatment focuses on fixing the person from their drug treatment and understanding the reason of their addiction such as school, work, friends. Individualized counselling helps the patient develop coping strategies and tools to abstain from drug use and maintain abstinence. The addiction counsellor encourages 12-step program and suggests other resources to cope with their addiction.

Group Counseling

This treatment encourages self help of people who share substance abuse problems. This treatment provides a more encouraging environment as everyone suffers some form of the problem. The group offer peer discussion to promote a drug free lifestyle.