My uncle, who has been an addict for 37 years has been to rehab multiple times, none of which have been successful. Began using marijuana when he was 14 years old and it has since escalated from there. Has used Crack, Cocaine, LSD, Meth, Ecstasy, Prescription Drugs such as Xanex and Oxycotin, Heroin and Methaqualone (a pill that’s side effects include, euphoria, drowsiness, reduced heart rate, reduced respiration, increased sexual arousal, paresthesias, which is the numbness of the fingers and toes, respiratory depression, slurred speech, headache and sensitivity to light. Essentially an alcoholic blackout in a pill). Currently still addicted to Heroin and Cocaine. So this inspired me to do this project on drugs and alcohol because I have seen what it can do to a family, I have personally seen how it can emotionally mentally and financially hurt an addicts loved ones, because I have seen my family hurt due to my uncles addiction.
A chemical substance that affects the process of the mind or body. A substance other than food intended to affect the structure or function of the body. Anything that can be inhaled, injected or ingested. It is important to remember that drugs will effect everyone differently. What may not have any effect on you could have a drastically different effect on someone else. Example Vicodin: wisdom teeth , people who I have talked to have said the vicdoin has made them extremely nauseous but with me I had no nausea at all.
Stimulants A substance that temporarily produces an increase of the the body’s activity, Cocaine, Meth. Depressants Substance that temporarily decreases the function or activity of the body, Alcohol, Marijuana. Hallucinogens Chemicals that alter perception, thought and mood. name describes that the drug will include hallucinations, LSD.
persistent and compulsive dependence on a behavior or substance. What determines an addiction: You build up tolerance, meaning it takes more of the drug of choice to feel that high. And withdraw symptoms meaning when you stop using the drug of choice for an extended period of time your body doesn’t know how to handle it. Some withdraw symptoms include but are not limited to, vomiting, sweating, anxiety, increased heart rate, tremors (which is uncontrollable shaking of the body). Withdraw symptoms can be as severe as, heart attack stroke and seizures Determining an addiction Building up a tolerance Withdraw symptoms
EXPOSURE FROM PEERSThe more you’re around an addictive substance, especially around peers, the more likely you are to use it2. PARENT USAGE A child seeing a parent use a drug usually makes the child feel as though it’s okay. Children also want to be like their parents3. AVAILABILITY The more available certain substance are, the more likely to want to try and more likely to get ahold of 4. GENETICS If a relative has been an addict it affects the genetic disposition weakening someone’s ability to resist abuse5. POOR HOME LIFE Most addicts have been reported to not have had a good relationship with their immediate family when they were younger 6. Psychological issuesIndividuals who have a psychological issue are more prone to having a drug problem rather then healthy ones7. PersonalityIndividuals who have anger issues, or are shy will may have a higher chance of becoming addicted, reduces inhibitions, need away to branch out
The normal brain
Notice the holes in the heroin addicts brain. They all represent dead activity, or areas of the brain that longer respond
Once again notice the spaces in the addicts brain they represent areas that no longer function
Crack become popular in the late 1980s and early 1990s (NINTEEN NINTEYS NOT 1900s!!) Hospitals began getting hundreds of patients dying or getting severely ill due to crack addictions. Social services was also being hit hard with hundreds of abandon children due to their parents crack addiction. Local police and federal drug enforcement officers began overfilling local jails with users and dealers. Crack eventually began becoming popular within gangs who realized they could make more money by selling crack. Around this time is when crack houses began popping up all over the East Coast slums while dealers and users started to find ways to use and deal out of site of rivalry gangs and law enforcement. While these crack houses did provide users and dealers the protection they were after they were often extremely run down, with no running water, electricity, or trash collection. Which lead to being a disease ridden building that most people were unable to live in and ended back up on the streets back to their old habits with crack.
In the early 20th century cocaine was thought to be a safe energy booster and pain reliever. Until individuals kept taking the pain reliever more and more often. Short term and long term psychological side effects Short: rapid heart rate (leads to increased amount of blood pumping through the body) increased blood pressure, and increased body temperature, also chemically alters the brain to produce a large about of dopamine Long: Blood vessels in the brain become more narrow which as a result doesn’t provide the brain enough oxygen. When deprived of oxygen brain cells begin to die. An abusers brain eventually shrinks, becomes discolored and poorly functioning. The heart beats four times faster than normal leadign to a condition called tachycardia and what that is, is the heart beats 100 times or more per minute causing severe chest discomfort, which will eventually lead to death. These all permanentCocaine become widely popular in the 1970s where users saw the drug as a “harmless recreational drug”, and was used by many celebrities such as Kurt Kobain and David Bowie, which then individuals saw it to be okay to use.
About 17.6 million Americans are Alcoholics. Causes: Genetics: Studies have shown a genetic predisposition to alcoholism: this being, the Amygdala, which is the area of the brain that is believed to play a large roll in cravings, is significantly smaller in individuals with a family history of alcohol addiction. Certain individuals have abnormal levels of serotonin which is a neurotransmitter. Abnormal levels of serotonin results in abnormally high tolerance levels for alcohol. The user with the abnormal level is obviously more likely to be able to drink a lot more. Biology: Scientist and researches have been looking at how long term alcohol usage seems to deplete the brain’s supply of dopamine and serotonin. This is showing that long term addiction is actually changing the brains chemistry and the alcohol has no physical effect on the drinker, he or she only believesit doesCulture: People are going to be willing to drink more when they see people they look up to in the media drinking. Most commercials are focused towards a younger demographic, not only that but college life is often built around time you spend drinking.Age: The longer you drink the more likely you are to develop an alcohol problem. Adolescents are at a higher risk of developing an alcohol problem, due to history of abuse, family violence, and depression. --Alcohol Addiction: Not Worth the Buzz
What this quote is saying that once you abuse alcohol you can no longer be a social drinker. After becoming an alcoholic, drinking becomes something you can no longer control. Alcoholics do not know how to only have one drink.
About 144 million people over the age fifteen have admitted to smoking marijuana, which is the largest group of illegal drug usage It is important to know that cannabis and marijuana are two very different things. Cannabis has been used for thousands of years for many different things, paper, cloth and rope. While marijuana is made from the dried leaves and the buds of the plant. Users often report that the drug makes them feel happy, relaxed haand stimulated, it automatically effects the users brain and nervous system. A lot of people are under the impression that smoking marijuana is not harmful but that’s not the case at all there are numerous long term and short term effects. Some short term effects include inhibition of the ability to learn, inhibition of memory, impaired judgment where long term effects include the functioning of immune system is drastically affected, lung disease, long term usage can result in a low sperm count for men and irregular periods for women. And these are just a few there is still a very long list of effects
Marijuana effects the body in many different ways, it effects the brain, the lungs, the heart and the users mental health. It effects the brain in that it is similar to alcohol in the way it effects the users ability to control movement, impairing judgment, and making it dangerous to drive a car. Some scientists feel that marijuana changes the way that the brain cells connect with each other and studies have shown that year of usage have resulted in to have difficulties with memory and problem solving. Marijuana effects the heart in that it increases the users heart rate, to about the speed of that of strenuous exercise. Lungs: marijuana effects the lungs by causing lung damage, damage that is worse then that of someone who smokes cigarettes. This is for several reasons, hand rolled marijuana cigarettes do not have a filter where as manufactured ones do. The filter is used to decrease the amount of chemicals inhaled. Also because marijuana smokers take bigger breaths then cigarette smokers meaning smoke flows deeper into their lungs and they hold it there longer, therefore increasing the risk for damage and disease. Cigarette smoke and marijuana smoke have similar chemicals that damage the the lung throat and mouth. Therefore marijuana is just as dangerous as cigarette smoking if not worse.
Meth is a man made drug which includes but not limited too, battery acid, paint thinner, brake cleaner, drain cleaner, acetone, cold medicine, iodine crystals, ammonia and Freon (which is used in refrigerators). Meth is a stimulant that speeds up the brains activity, increases energy, alertness, breathing rate, blood pressure and decreases the need for sleep. Meth can be smoked, injected, inhaled or taken in a pill form. Street names for meth are, speed, chalk, glass, yaba and ice when in the form that it is able to smoked. Meth has not always been viewed as a dangerous drug in the 1930s it was originally used for the treatment of asthma. During the Great Depression people used meth to help deal with stress. As people began to realize it increased awareness and you required less sleep while using meth it started to become available to the soldiers in World War II, the Vietnam War and Desert Storm. Soon after war usage meth quickly became popular throughout the public. Users would combine it with the weight loss medication amphetamine 1960 . Which is where the name Methamphetamine comes from. Meth works by altering the individuals behavior because it directly targets the neurotransmitters which are chemicals that send signals between neuron. Meth directly conflicts with the making of dopamine, it creates much more then the normal amount which causing feelings of extreme happiness
Long term effects: irreversible brain damage that can cause memory loss, trouble with movement, learning impediments and ultimately death. Vascular problems including increased heart rate and heart failure. And even stroke. Not only vascular problems but kidney lung and liver damage again all of which will lead to death Less severe long term effects are acne, teeth grinding, slurred speech, dilated pupils, dry skin, and excessive sweating Short term effects: headaches blurred vision dizziness, dry mouth, severe insomnia, and athetosis, which is repetitive slow involuntary movements which is especially severe in the hands.When taking a large dose in a short amount of time it can have much more severe effects such as dangerously high body temperatures, which ultimately results in hypothermia which will then cause convulsions that can lead to death
Meth doesn’t only effect the body psychically, the user will experience extreme behavior changes, with extreme confidence and high levels of energy and alertness. When the high wears off the user will experience severe aggression, nervousness, irritability, confusion and depression. Not only changes in mood but users will also pick at the face and hands do to the fact that they feel as though they have bugs crawling in their skin causing open sores and scarring. Scarring is not only from picking at the skin but searching for available veins. As many veins collapse due to extended usage. This leads to not only a physical addition but a psychological addiction as well. Meth users are often found to develop symptoms of schizophrenia and these symptoms can become so bad that the user that they can cause the user to have thoughts of murder or suicide
Highly addictive drug that is processed from morphine, which in itself if derived from opium poppies (opium being a flower). Heroin has a higher potency then morphine does due to chemical reactions. Afghanistan is actually the worlds largest producer of heroin, even though most addicts in the united states use heroin that comes from mexico and south america. Heroin is usually white or brown in color but it can be sold in a sticky black substance which is known as black tar heroin and what that is is heroin mixed with milk, starch, sugar quinine (medication to treat malaria) and is laced with strychnine (which is a pesticide used for killing rats). According to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, about 9.2 million people are addicted to heroin world wide. When first using heroin you sense a “rush” and extreme euphoria. However after addicted use is continued to reduce withdraw symptoms. Once the drug is in the blood stream the user will feel drowsy and mental functioning is impaired which is sometimes referred to as nodding. Some other symptoms include, decreased heart rate, slow breathing which can become so slow that the user will die, vomiting which would occur in newer users. A study done by the National Institute on Drug Abuse has shown that some addicts go through the rehabilitation only to feel the initial euphoria. Heroin can be injected, snorted or smoked. Short term effects : nausea and vomiting, miscarriage, slow mental functioningLong term: contraction of diseases such as HIV through the sharing of needles, infections of the lining of the heart and heart valves, arthritis, collapsed veins, liver and kidney disease, and lung infections such as pneumonia and tuberculosis
The 12 step programsSelf Help ProgramsAlternative Treatments
Over 2 million people in the world participate in 12 step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous. The main idea of 12 step programs is to admit you have a problem. Which is why at the beginning of each meeting users have to stand up, state there name and say I am an alcoholic or I am addicted to heroin, etc. The 12 steps is also very religious, they’re all about working with God to help overcome your addiction. The actual 12 steps areWe admitted we were powerless over alcohol or our drug use. That out lives have become unmanageable Came to believe that a Power greater then ourselves could restore our sanity Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongsWere entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character Humbly ask Him to remove our shortcomingsMade a list of persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them allMade directs amends to such people wherever possible except when to do so would injure them or othersContinued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.Sought through prayer and meditation to improve out conscious contact with God as we understood Him praying for only knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that outHaving had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and to practice these principles in all out affairs
Self help groups usually have moderators who have recovered from addiction themselves leading the group. They help involve you in peer support and counseling. Most people find self help groups more helpful rather then the 12 steps programs because they’re led by someone who has actually been through what they’re going through. And has experienced the highs and lows of recovery. The follow the rules ofAbstinence: there is no reason at all to drink or to use againDetermination: never look back, especially when things get tough. You have another chance in life and not many get that chance. Your sobriety doesn’t fix everything but its definitely a start and it makes everything possibleHonesty: Get everything out in the open. Get ride of the shadows and the darkness of the past. Shine light on the shadows and they lose they’re power. Even problems that can be dealt with reasonably when they’re truthfully reviewedPeople: Human interaction is extremely powerful. If you meet people who are also in recovery. Your interactions with them can fight old patters.
Acupuncture people believe that with acupuncture treatments it will stimulate the flow of chee which is the flow of energy thus removing the “bad energy” of drug useIbogaine plant based remedy that is believed to have anti addictive characteristics. It chemistry ibogaine is considered an alkaloid which relieves dependency and withdraw symptoms making it easier to stop using
All in all this project has taught me a lot. It has helped me somewhat understand what my uncle is going through with his addiction and has given me some sense of closure.
Drug Addiction Allison Touchstone http://www.flickr.com/photos/latin_snake/2608354549/lightbox/
Thesis Statement Drug addiction is a devastating issue that is affecting our society today. Addiction takes on many forms, whether itmay be alcoholism, or substance abuse. It affects both the abuser, their family and friends emotionally, mentally, financially and physically. http://www.salvationarmysouth.org/spiritualformation/images/drugs.jpg
“Physicians who are familiar with alcoholism agree there is no such thing as making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic.” -ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, The Big Book http://www.amillionlives.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/Effects-of-Alcoholism.jpg http://www.notable-quotes.com/a/alcoholism_quotes.html
Signs of Alcoholism Drinking for relief Need for increasingly large amounts of alcohol to feel drunk “Blackouts” : Not being able to remember events or block of time while drinking Not admitting to having a problem Hiding drinking from others Sneaking drinks Increasing thoughts about alcohol Planning events or entire days around drinking Drinking as soon as they wake up Personality changes and mood swings http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/27/dining/27drin.html?_r=1
Class Activity http://www.mdottrafficsafety.com/Programs/safetyEductationPrograms/Pages/Fatal-Vision-Goggles.aspx
Works Cited Shaw, Brian F., Paul Ritvo, and Jane Irvine. Addiction & Recovery for Dummies. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2005. Print Gwinnell, Esther, and Christine A. Adamec. "Heroin." The Encyclopedia of Drug Abuse. New York NY: Facts On File, 2008. Print Karr, Justin. Alcoholism. Detroit: Greenhaven, 2008. Print. Walker, Ida. Addiction in America: Society, Psychology, and Heredity. Philadelphia: Mason Crest, 2008. Print. Etingoff, Kim. Methamphetamine: Unsafe Speed. Philadelphia: Mason Crest, 2008. Print. Goodwin, William. Marijuana. San Diego, CA: Lucent, 2002. Print. Barter, James. Cocaine and Crack. San Diego, CA: Lucent, 2002. Print. Lennard-Brown, Sarah. Marijuana Chicago, Illinois: Raintree, 2005. Print. Nadelson, Carol C., M.D. The Mental Effects of Heroin. Philadelphia : Chelsea House , 1999. N. pag. Print. Thakkar, Vatsal G., M.D. Addiction . New York: Chelsea House, 2006. N. pag. Print.
Conclusion In conclusion, drug addiction is a problem that needs to be taken seriously.It is so much easier to say no than it is to go through rehab and quit, because once you’re addicted it can take a lifetime of pain to become clean again. So save your life and say no. http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2653/3916151288_6daaf5741d_z.jpg?zz=1