Using Recreational Drugs
Recreational drugs are chemical substances used for leisure or enjoyment purposes other than medical prescription purposes. Examples of these chemicals include alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, cocaine, amphetamines, amyl nitrates, ketamine, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methamphetamines, ecstasy, and caffeine. Individuals who start using these drugs do it usually for purposes of obtaining pleasure or to have their lives improved in some way. On contrary to the thinking of people using these chemicals, recreational drugs have effects; mostly negative effects on the minds of users and their bodies too. In addition, usage of these drugs can lead to addiction, social problems and crime. Apart from the reasons of obtaining pleasure or improving life, users of these drugs also get involved in using them due to reasons such as the need to experiment with the effects. Most young people fall into this group. They like to have the first-hand experience rather than having to put up with what other people say. Some people start using these chemicals because of pressure from their friends while others feel more relaxed and confident when they relate with their colleagues. Poverty and despair are they key contributors of the problematic drug use.
Additionally, people try recreation drugs as a way of making them forget their worries, enjoy the effects, and make them feel that the drugs will give them new experiences or perspectives of life. However, despite the efforts by the government to fight the use of recreational drugs, the number of people using them has risen for the past years. Statistics show that one in every four schoolchildren had used at least one recreational drug in 2012. 17 in every 100 secondary school pupils had tried recreational drugs at some point in their lifetime. Therefore, this trend shows that use of recreational drugs is the leading cause of deaths, mental illness and poisoning among the users (Lager 42).People using recreational drugs exhibit signs such as being moody, more tired, difficulty concentration, anxious and poor coordination.
Why use of Recreational Drugs is bad and Dangerous
Despite the relaxation feeling, recreational drugs bring negative effect to the users. Continuous use of these chemicals is associated with the aftermath effects that leads to panic, physical and mental health, and addiction. Every year, drug abuse kills tens of thousands of the people. Crime and violence go hand-in-hand with drug abuse. Therefore, use of recreational drugs is harmful by facilitating the following risks:
Recreational drugs use cause addiction effects
Drug abuse for a long period will result in an absolute state of dependence on the chemical. The reason behind this is that regular use of drugs makes the body tolerant, therefore, to maintain the same effects, more amounts of drugs has to be consumed for a period. Failure to take the drugs dramatically lowers the mood thereby, the person wishes to be ‘high’ due to the induced effects. This urge makes a person to go to any length in order to get the drug regardless of prohibiting factors such as economic constraints, social obligations, and societal behaviors and beliefs. To sum up, addiction is one of the psychological and physical dependence that captures both the brain and physical movements of a person and associate it to a particular drug that a person has to depend on it on daily basis in order to function. Consequently, the addict develops impairment, suicidal depression, irrational decision-making, hallucinations, and nightmares and loses memory.
Recreational drugs cause personality disorders
Drug abuse results in the development of personality disorders such as bipolar, schizophrenia, anxiety and depression. As a habit, drug use brings about compulsive behavior as the addicts tries to get drugs, crave for them and continue using the drugs regardless of their negative consequences. Recurrent use of the drug causes an inability for the individual to meets the requirement obligations such as homework, job responsibilities. This is because the individual develops anxiety, acute depression and lacks the motivation to do assigned tasks. Moreover, the person has a constant paranoia that makes an individual have a state of constant fear even to family members. Euphoria and depression cause the development of bipolar disorder with time of drug usage. Recreational drug-addicts with time develop schizophrenia, a disorder that is associated with confusion and difficulty in knowing reality and impaired perceptions in timing. Hallucinogenic drugs are the immediate cause of these induced hallucinations (Morgan 500).
Short-term and Long-term physical risks
People under the influence of alcohol are prone to physical damage and other accidents. Their judgments are influenced by alcohol and sometime fail to make informed choices. Taking these drugs can also, lead to physical dependence whereby the drug affects the person and withdrawal symptoms are realized whenever the person stop using the drug. Moreover, recreational drugs such as cannabis cause psychological dependence whereby people solely rely on drugs to be happy and they cannot stop taking them. Continuous use of recreational drugs such as cannabis results in long-term association with the drug whereby the user cannot quit using it due to both the psychological and physical dependence on the drug (Ashton 101-106). Therefore, the intoxication level of the drug in the body of the users is high and the withdrawal effects result in the death of many people. Moreover, using the recreational drugs starts bit by bit and ends up as a long-term risk to the user. Seizures occur rapidly due to precipitation fits by the drugs such as cocaine. Prolonged seizures may lead to both temporary and permanent physical disability. Furthermore, there are high chances of developing stroke as neurological event linked with the use of these stimulant recreational drugs.
Risk to society and social life
Uses of recreational drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine have a negative impact on the society by causing family break-ups, damaging relationships, and property. The cost policing of recreational drug may force an individual to sell family property and other valuable items in order to have money to buy the drugs. For instance, cocaine and heroin are very expensive. Therefore, to access these chemicals, the addicts are forced to look for a source of money in order to afford a purchase of the drugs. One way to acquire this money is selling items, stealing and committing crimes in the society. Consequently, the addict’s social life is affected by his or her impaired judgments that result in alienation from peers, withdrawal from family activities and members, become bad examples for younger siblings to emulate and loss of ties and relationship from other members of the family (Sharland 247-265).
Recreational drug abuse makes a person to withdraw from roles and activities. For instance, poor work performance, a decline in school performance, inadequate motivation to accomplish a certain task. Therefore, the brain is altered making it euphoric leading to an urge to more drug abuse. The person develops aggressiveness and irritability resulting in an antisocial personality disorder. Moreover, drug abuse brings about continued use effects regardless of the social and family relationship problems (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”).
Risk of injecting
Injection of recreational drugs is an indicator of higher dependence on the drugs. There are rapid onset effects associated with secondary health outcomes. For instance, people using recreational drugs tend to have a practice of sharing of sharing syringes and other piercing tools. This poses a wide range of secondary health outcomes such as the spread of hepatitis C and HIV transmission and blood poisoning. Therefore, young generations are lured to drug abuse and this behavior contributes significantly the spread of these deadly diseases in the society. For instance, Heroin addicts form the bulk of drug injectors who end up with infective endocarditis and infarcts that lead to meningitis, cerebral abscess, Osteomyelitis, septic arteritis and AIDS with its neurology (Cunha 811-813)
Risk of bingeing
Recreational drug use with time causes a tendency to dose oneself repeatedly with substances. This is an indicator of dependence-forming properties of a drug and therefore, its presence indicates harm to both the individuals and the society. Taking excessive amount of drugs will result in bingeing, a behavior that is unacceptable in the society since it lowers the productivity of an individual in the family, and community. Psychiatric disorders linked with bingeing include depression, Bipolar disorder, and anxiety (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”).Additionally, bringing recreational drugs such as methamphetamine and Cocaine dehydrates the body whereby the body may go into toxic shock.
Recreational drug use causes coordination problems
Drug abuse not only affects the coordination between the brain and physical movements but also affect the motor sensitivity and performance. These drugs affect the sensory coordination of the brain making it awry. Therefore, an individual abusing the drugs lacks synchronization of various body organs develops impaired speech and judgment as well as loss of self-control.
Recreational drugs tamper with the brain
The brain releases chemical dopamine to produce intoxicating effects of drugs also known as the ‘high’ pleasurable effect. The presence of these chemicals taps the system of brain communication by resembling the chemical messengers of the brain. Since these chemicals imitate the structure of the neurotransmitters, hallucinogenic information is sent to the brain receptors that result in wrong and abnormal messages in the brain. Moreover, other recreational drugs cause the nerves to release neurotransmitter in large amounts that affect the activeness of dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical that controls movement, feelings, emotions and motivation (Seeman 230). This chemical ensures that the brain system is associated positively with survival behaviors. Changes in the concentrations of Dopamine result in immense pleasure of the ‘high’ feeling that causes memory problems and mental confusion. Long-term usage of recreational drug causes brain hemorrhage accompanied by severe headaches and loss of consciousness. Prolonged use of these chemicals causes seizures, dependence, and psychosis among the addicts (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”).
It causes respiratory problems
Use of recreational drugs makes a person more receptive to chronic diseases. For instance, the use of tobacco causes respiratory diseases and side effects such as respiratory depression, cancer of the lungs, bronchitis, emphysema and shallow breathing. Notably, some drugs slow breathing rate, block air entry into the lungs and aggravate asthma symptoms. Marijuana contains carcinogenic chemical compounds that cause severe respiratory damage. For instance, Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) compound in marijuana causes hyperinflation and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (Owen 65).
Weakening immune system
Drugs such as opiates, ecstasy and cocaine produce reaction within the body that weakens the immune system. The immune system helps fight the pathogens that may invade the body, therefore; weakening the system makes an individual more susceptible to disease and infections. Recreational drugs such as amphetamines suppress the killer cells made in the bone marrow thereby degrading the immune system. Drugs such as marijuana increase individual susceptibility to diseases such as cancer and other infections. With a weakened immune system, susceptibility to diseases such as HIV, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and hepatitis is high. Methamphetamine dries the mucous membrane in the mouth and rectum-increasing individual’s susceptibility to infection and diseases (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”).
Regular use of recreational drugs impairs the sexual performance for both men and women. Both active and passive exposure to these chemicals results in low libido, sexual arousal disorders, and erectile dysfunction. Sexual disorders affect the ability of men and women to maintain erection and sexual arousal respectively during sexual intercourse. Moreover, the drugs cause orgasmic dysfunction whereby both men and men fail to reach an orgasm easily (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”). These drugs lure person to addiction abandoning sexual responsibility leading to loss of sexual contact.
Drug abuse causes birth defects
Recreational drug consumptions facilitate birth of premature and underdeveloped babies. Pregnant women who use recreational drugs such as Amphetamines develops low immunity system that make them prone to infections thereby exposing them to high risk of miscarriage, getting premature births and giving birth to low birth-weight babies. Withdrawal symptoms of mothers who take drugs are linked to birth defects and behavioral problems. Therefore, engaging in unhealthy behaviors results in poor nutrition pattern among pregnant mothers and increased chances of sexually transmitted infection. These impurities from drugs are harmful to the pregnant women (“Top 10 Side Effects Of Recreational Drugs | Listsurge”).
Recreational drugs may cause death
All recreational drugs, when used in large quantities, result in body intoxication. Organs fail to operate normally causing death. According to the office of National Statistics, 2,955 deaths registered in 2013 were drug-related. Heroin and Morphine account for the highest number of deaths (McDonald 93).This indicates that long exposure to recreational drugs causes mental and behavioral disorders due to drug poisoning that eventually results in the death of the addict. For instance, Synthetic opioid claimed the lives of two thirteen-year-old Utah boys. This shows that social determinants and drug use initiations are modified by individual characteristics. The two boys were minors thus their family structure contributed a lot in their drug abuse lifetime. The boys did not have close family relationships and this contributed to their beginning of substance abuse. Each year, more than 400,000 Americans die from cigarette smoking induced conditions (Galea 36).
Reasons why recreational drugs should be illegal
Prohibition curbs drug usage
There is an intuitive assumption that legalizing drug will result in the rise of the number of drug addicts. In reciprocity, health problems that result from drug abuse will increase. Drivers will drive under the influence of alcohol and other substances. Recreational drugs such as heroin and marijuana are terrible for an individual’s mental health. Legalizing them will result in violation of morality in the society. Therefore, drugs are more addictive and making of law that prohibits acquisition of the substances is a potential guide to repeal on drugs. Consequently, as the law prohibits possession of drugs such as heroin, it ensures that drug usage declines. According to World Health Organization, cannabis is an illegal drug whose cultivation, harvesting and distribution are not subject to quality control (Hall 24).Therefore; usage of these substances can cause death or seriously affect the health of the users since the government does not enforce quality control on them.
Recreational drug use is deadly
Death caused by recreational drug use is 174 percent higher than those caused by alcohol are. Legalization of these drugs will not reduce crimes. Therefore, it should be illegal to acquire these drugs as they are linked to domestic violence and deaths. Legalizing drugs also will not stop the behavior change in people who use the drugs. A drug considered legal for adult cannot be kept away from the children. Notably, children may not understand the side effects of certain recreation drugs. Therefore, it is important to declare them illegal in the first place to prohibit the access and possession since most of these substances are health hazards and deadly to human life.
There are penalties against drugs
In some countries, there are rules that govern the possession of certain substances. States such as U.S have penalties against recreation drugs. These penalties prevent and delay millions of people from abusing drugs. People especially children and adolescents have to respect the law, therefore, acquisition of these substances is termed illegal, contrary to the law and penalties may apply where necessary. For instance in some countries, smuggling illegal drugs is an offenses punishable through jail sentence or death. This is harsh and scary laws ensure people understand that recreational drugs are illegal to have.
Decriminalization of drugs challenges government
Decriminalizing drugs add more challenges to the government and its people. More financial resources are used to treat drug-related health conditions. In addition, social ills such as violence, robbery will increase. The government uses more funds to treat drug-related challenges than controlling. Therefore, most governments prohibit access to these drugs in the first place by declaring them illegal within its jurisdiction.
Recreational drug abuse is a global phenomenon that affects every person negatively. Drug abuse is associated with but not limited to addiction effects, physical risks such as withdrawal symptoms, deaths, birth defects, depression, sex dysfunction, weakened immune system among other effects. Arguments against decriminalizing dangerous and harmful poisons such as cannabis and heroin have contributed in the elimination of criminal marketplace for recreational drugs through prescriptions, licensing, and laws on sales to minors. Recreational drugs destroy the lives of young people whose social lives deteriorate. Addicts feel alienated from other members of the society whereby most of them put the final nail in their coffin. To counter such instances, some countries have declared recreational drug as illegal to use and possess. The illegality of these drugs has deterred about 60% of children from abusing them (Duke 571) Drugs are declared illegal since they are dangerous to human health. However, despite the effort to illegalize recreational drugs, it is irresponsible to make other harmful drugs available to young people. Additionally, it is difficult to justify restriction of prescription drugs whereas the recreational drugs are available.
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