One time is all it takes. Just trying one sip, one puff, or one pill can lead to addiction. Addiction is when a person becomes “hooked” on a drug. Addiction lowers one’s ability to make independent choices. It consumes one’s thoughts and actions. Drug use is when one ingests a substance into their system. The substance does not necessarily have to be an illicit drug; for instance, it can be psychoactive drug or an over-the-counter drug. Psychoactive drugs have an impact on the central nervous system and can change consciousness, mood, perception, and thought. The main categories of psychoactive drugs include depressants, stimulants, and hallucinogens. Depressants act on GABA receptors to produce calming, sedating effects. Stimulants imitate the effects of epinephrine and increase activity in the central nervous system. Hallucinogens alter and distort perceptions of time and space and cause hallucinations. An over-the-counter drug is essentially the definition of its name. It is a drug does not require a prescription such as antihistamines. One takes drugs for many different reasons: to avoid pain, to relieve stress and anxiety, to alleviate an illness, etc. Drug use can evolve into drug abuse when one uses a drug more than is necessary. For instance, drug abuse would be when one takes double the amount of a prescribed medication. Tolerance is when one builds up immunity to a drug and requires a greater amount to have the same effect. Marijuana smokers must inhale more marijuana over time to get the same “high” as when they first smoked it. Substance dependence is when one cannot live without a drug. The drug dominates one’s life. One suffering from substance abuse couldn’t stop taking the drug if they wanted...
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... act more violently which can lead to abuse of family members.
Psychoactive drugs have an effect on how the brain functions. They stimulate the reward system of the brain. They can have varying effects on the brain. For instance, cocaine attaches to sending neurons that reuptake neurotransmitters. Norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin provide the “high” sensation. These molecules remain in the synaptic cleft for longer. Each drug can impact the body and brain differently. Depressants decrease the activity of the central nervous system producing calming effects. Stimulants have the opposite effects of depressants; they intensify the activity of the central nervous system. Hallucinogens produce vivid hallucinations as the name implies. They can also produce confusion and panic. Drugs can have detrimental effects both physically and psychologically.
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