Substance abuse and addiction are major problems in society today. Every segment of society, regardless of race, gender, or age is affected. Some of the substances that are used grow naturally, where as others are manufactured illicitly or even legitimately in laboratories. They may be smoked, inhaled, ingested, or injected and used for social, religious, or self-medicating purposes. The substance that are abused include caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, steroids, stimulants, depressants, heroin, ANd cocaine.
Substance abuse and dependence were first described as disease process in the 1960s with the introduction of Jellinek’s work on alcoholism. Dependence on alcohol and other drugs is now accepted and is classified as a psychiatric disorder.
Substance abuse ranks high among serious health problems. Since 1979 illicit drug use and alcohol consumption have declined, but the widespread use of and dependence on these substance continue. Nicotine, now classified by the Food and Drug Administration as an addictive substance, is linked to more deaths annually than AIDS, cancer, and other substances combined. Alcohol is also a major social problem today. Use and abuse of alcohol are a factor in contributing to injuries and death.
The cost of substance abuse is increasing in our society. Lives are lost, and loss of work productivity costs millions of dollars each year. Alcohol is a factor in 40% of all motor vehicle accidents, and alcohol and other drugs are often implicated in boating or athletic accidents. Cost include not only lives lost but also medical care, long-term services to the disabled, and increased insurance rates. Health care cost for clients use alcohol, drugs, and nicotine are estimated to be greater than $160 billion annually. It has been confirmed that there is link between violence and alcohol and other drugs. Alcohol and drugs is a factor in vandalism on college campuses, date rape, sexual assault, and domestic violence. Under the influence of alcohol and drugs, young adults are more likely to engage in unsafe sexual practices, and parents are more likely to abuse their children.
Certain factors place some individuals at greater risk than others for the development of abuse and dependence. Biological, psychological, or environmental conditions may predispose a person to the development of a drug or alcohol pr...
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...up influence, disciplined drug-free lifestyles; examples include Phoenix House and Day Top Village.
Drinking while pregnant can cause serious damage to a new born baby.
Dysmorphic Features of FAS include:
Microcephaly (small head circumference below 5%)
Small palpebral fissures (eye slits)
Flat nasal bridge
Smooth or indistinct philtrum (ridge above upper lip)
Thinned upper lip
Flattening of mid-face
Others: epicanthal folds, low set or mildly malformed ears Counseling is a useful and effective means it can be administered on an individual basis or in family counseling. Support groups would be another effective mean to support a person with substance-related disorders and their families. There are many groups modeled on the Twelve-Step approach of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Other groups include Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Al-Anon, Nar Anon, Children of Alcoholic Parents (CAP), Smokenders, Ala Teen. These are a few of the self help groups that can be contacted in our communities to help those who are abuser or have friends or family members who are abusers. Most of these groups are free of charge and are conducted by people who have abused and are now recovering.
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