Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Substance Abuse

Drug abuse is the use of any chemical substance, which results in an individual's physical, mental, emotional, or social impairment. These include anxiety, depression, paranoia, psychosis, respiratory tract infections, nose and mouth ulcerations and other systemic diseases. Other diseases such as HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, Septicemia can also result from needle sharing among users of injection-type drugs. Cardiovascular disease, stroke, cancer and lung disease can occur when drugs are used at high doses or after prolonged use, however, some may occur after just one use.

2 million people die premature deaths each year due to alcohol and illicit drug use. These substances are responsible for about 9 percent of the total global burden of disease.

Warning signs of substance abuse:

  • sudden change in their behavior - like wanting to be left alone, paranoia, change of sleep patterns, becoming easily irritated or secretive.
  • physical changes such as dilated pupils, blood shot eyes, unsteady movements, weight loss, and neglect of personal hygiene.

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