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MAF Corporation 2018 Ojoku Students, Community Orientation Program Effect Of Drug Abuse And Addiction


With an objective to create sentience about the drug abuse and its harmful effects, a lecture on ‘Drug Abuse’ was conducted at Ojoku Grammar School, Ojoku Kwara State on December 4, 2018. Titled "MAF Corporation 2018 Ojoku students and community orientation program Effect of Drug abuse and addiction".


CNSL Afolabi Adelola Mariam who is the host and also the speaker for the lecture, in her speech at the grand opening of the event discussed extensively on DRUGS AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE AMONG Youths, PREVALENCE AND EFFECTS;

She said;

"Drugs mean chemicals that have effect on the body, mind or behaviour. In other words, drugs are substances other than food that change the structure or function of the body or mind. In medical terms, a drug is a chemical taken in prescribed dosages to treat or prevent illness."

"Drug is often referred to as medicine, a vaccine, a tranquilizer, an antibiotic or some other medical terms. In legal terms, a drug is a chemical that has a high possibility of being abused."

"People abuse drugs by using them improperly either socially or medically. For this reason, according to Wayne and Dale (1998), certain drugs are controlled substances. Laws restrict or prohibit the use of controlled substances. Restricted drugs are those sold only by prescription or only to persons of legal age. Alcohol and tobacco can only be sold to persons of legal age, although, the reverse is the case these days. Prohibited drugs cannot be prescribed by physicians or sold legally (Wayne & Dale, 1998)."

"The World Health Organization (2010) defined substance abuse as the harmful or hazardous use of psychoactive substances, including alcohol and illicit drugs. Drug abuse is the arbitrary over dependence or misuse of one particular drug with or without a prior medical diagnosis from qualified health practitioner. The majority of Nigerian youths ignorantly depend on one form of drug or the other for their various daily activities, social, educational, political and moral use etc (Garwood, 2012).
The United Nations (2012) reported that about 185 million people globally over the age of 15 were consuming drugs by the end of the 20th century. The most commonly mentioned drugs were marijuana, cocaine, amphetamine-types stimulants (ATS), opiates and volatile solvents (Durani, 2012). Durani, stressed also that substance abuse touches millions of people worldwide each year. It is estimated that about 76.3 million people struggle with alcohol use disorders contributing to 1.8 million deaths per year.
Drug abuse therefore, is a disorder that characterized by destructive patterns of using a substance that leads to significant problems or distress. The drugs mostly abuse by adolescents are; cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana, glue, paint, paint thinners, polish remover among others (Sweetney & Neff, 2001).

"In terms of tobacco use, it has been noted that its use is more prevalent and that most children are trying to experiment with tobacco at 9 years of age. The use of tobacco and alcohol in children are critical since both are considered as gateway drugs (McWhirter, 2004)."

"Many people most especially the youths use drugs as an escape from reality (such as unhappiness, low performance in school, family/relationship problems). Another factor why the youths use drugs as noted by Nicholsin (2013) is curiosity. Youngsters are eager to experiment on how drug works as a result of what they hear from their peers and other adults in the society that drugs make one feels good, alerted and functioning therefore, they become abusers."

"Some youths inherit drug abuse/addiction from parents. Genetic factor just like some congenital diseases that are inherited from the parents to children, the drug addict/habits may also be inherited (Slideshare, 2012). Lack of knowledge about what drugs encompass makes youngsters engage in drinking alcohol as most people do not count it as a drug."

"Other factors that make youths engage in drug abuse involve, dealing with anxiety and depression, lack of parental care, loneliness, physical pain, low self-esteem, life frustration such as unemployment or broken homes. The easy access to these drugs and lack of stiff penalty on the abusers are part of reasons drug abuse is prevalent among Nigeria youths."

"Youths involvement in drug abuse has been found by researchers to have a disastrous effect on the abusers, the family and the society at large. Odedeji (2001) observed that the use of drugs among youths has always been a thought for concern. Maladjusted cases such as riots, indiscipline, moral laxity and poor academic performance of youths has been linked with the abnormal use of drugs. The health effects of drug abuse starts from the brain of the abuser. Drug causes a surge in levels of dopamine in brain, which trigger feelings of pleasure. The brain remembers these feelings and wants them repeatedly."

"Changes in brain thus interfere with ones ability to think clearly, exercise good judgment, control of behavior and feel normal without drugs (Lawrence, Melinda, & Joanna, 2013). The individual may also experience heart attack, liver cyrosis, respiratory failure, coma, which may lead to death."

"Drug abuser places a burden on the family members as they expend on him financial and emotional support. Abusers involve in crimes such as stealing, assassination, armed robbery, prostitution and other unwanted behaviour. According to Olatunde (2001), drug abuse is associated with violent and anti-social behaviours; suicidal delinquency, acute psychosis and youth wastage in Nigeria."

Drugs that affect the brain alter mood and behaviours are legally controlled substances and the most commonly abused drugs. These psychoactive drugs can be categorized according to the nature of their physiological effects which fall into one of the general categories: stimulants, depressants, hallucinogens, cannabis, narcotic, inhalants and alcohol.

Stimulants
Stimulants are a group of drugs that excite or increase the activity of the central nervous system (CNS). Stimulant effects can be mild or strong depending on the kind of drug and the amount taken. Stimulants may cause an increase in alertness or give body a temperature, feeling of energy and wellbeing. Thus, the user feels uplifted and less fatigued. Example of stimulant drug include: caffeine, amphetamine and cocaine.

Caffeine: The methylxanthines are family of chemicals that includes three compounds, caffeine, theophylline and theobromine. Of these, caffeine is the most heavily consumed. Caffeine is a tasteless drug found in coffee tea, cocoa, many soft drinks and several group of over-the-counter drugs. It is a relatively harmless Central Nervous System (CNS) stimulant when consumed in moderate amounts. Many coffee drinkers believe that they cannot start the day successfully without the benefit of a cup or two of coffee.

Amphetamines: These are stimulants that accelerate function of the brain and body. They come in pills or tablets. Prescription diet pills also fall into category of drugs. It street names are speed, uppers, dexies, bennies and are being used by swallowing, inhaled or injection. Amphetamines users get fast high, making them feel powerful, alert and energized. Uppers pump up heart rate, breathing, blood pressure and they can also cause sweating, shaking, headaches, sleeplessness and blurred vision. Excessive and prolonged use may cause hallucination and intense paranoid. Tragic highway accidents have occurred when a driver who has taken amphetamines to stay alert has swerved to avoid a danger that was not there at all, (Wayne & Dale, 1998).

Crystal Methamphetamine: Crystal methamphetamine otherwisely called ice or speed, is the most recent and dangerous forms of methamphemine. When smoked the effects are felt in about seven seconds as a wave of intense physical and psychological exhilaration. This effects last for several hours until the user becomes physically exhausted.

Ritalin: Ritalin is a drug prescribed to elementary-age children who are hyper-active or cannot concentrate to help focus attention. Although Ritalin has not historically been considered a significant drug of abuse, the recent surge in the prescribing of Ritalin for children and teens has become a subject of debate (Pollock, Candace & Charles, 1979).

Cocaine: Cocaine is the primary psychoactive substance found in the leaves of the South American Coca plant. Cocaine is a power and illegal stimulant which its abuse has become a major health problem in our society. Cocaine create a feeling of exhilaration and a burst of energy, followed by depression as the drug wears off (the effects of cocaine last only briefly from five to thirty minutes). When users take more of the drug to relieve depression, they become dependent on it.

Depressants
Depressants (or sedatives) calm nerves and relax muscle i.e it slows down the CNS function. Drugs include in the category are alcohol barbiturates and tranquilizers. Depressants produce tolerance in abuser, as well as strong psychological and physical dependence. The concept of alcohol shall specially be addressed as being the commonly and popularly abused drugs across different ages in our society. Thus, here we shall focus on other category of depressants.

Barbiturates: Barbiturates sometimes called sleeping pills are used to cause sleep. Barbiturates showed reactive, reduced mental functioning and memory, slurred speech, loss of inhibition, causes drowsiness and sleep. High doses of barbiturates can lead to coma and death (Merki, 1996). The danger of death from barbiturate abuse multiplies when taken with alcohol because both have similar effects. Seizures, delusion, hallucinations, convulsion, collapse of cardiovascular system and death are some of the withdrawal syndrome from barbiturate use. Wayne and Dale (1979) suggested that withdrawal must occur gradually by reducing the amount of the barbiturate. Withdrawal from barbiturate dependence should be done only under medical supervision.

Tranquilizers: Tranquilizers are depressant for managing stress and reduce anxiety and relax muscle. They are specifically not designed to produce sleep but rather to help people cope during their waiting hours. Such tranquilizers are termed minor tranquilizer of which diazepam (Vallium) and chlordiazepoxide (Librium) may be the most commonly prescribed example (Pollock, Candace & Charles, 1979). Some tranquilizers are designed to control hospitalized psychotic patient who may be suicidal or who are potential threat to others. These major ones permit them to regain consciousness and subdue people physically. Their use is generally limited to institutional setting and can produce physical and psychological dependence and tolerance. Hallucination and convulsion can result from sudden withdrawal from tranquilizers.

Rohypnol: Rohypnol is a prescription drug manufactured in South America, Mexico, Europe and Asia and illegally transported into the United States. It is a low cost increasingly popular drug because it often comes in pre-sealed bubble packs; many teens think that the drug is safe. Its street names are roofies, roach, forge-time pill, date rape drug. This drug is swallowed, sometimes with alcohol or other drugs. Rohypnol is a prescription anti-anxiety medication that is ten times more powerful than valium (Durani, 2012). It can cause the blood pressure to drop, as well as cause memory loss, drowsiness, dizziness and an upset stomach. Rohypnol has received a lot of attention because of its association with date rape. Many girls report having been raped after having rohypnol slipped into their drinks (Merki, 1996). The drug also causes anterograde amnesia. This means it is hard to remember what happened while on the drug, like a blackout. Because of this, it can be hard to give important details if a young woman wants to report rape (Durani, 2012)

Hallucinogens
Hallucinogens also called psychedelic drugs or phantasticants are drugs that cause great changes in the way a person feels and interprets things. As the name suggests, hallucinogenic drugs cause hallucinations perceived distortion of reality. i.e it becomes difficult for the mind to  distinguish fact from fantasy.

Hallucinogenic drug include laboratory produced Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD), mescaline (from the peyote cactus plant) and psilocybin (from a particular genuse of mushroom) (Pollock, Candace and Charles, 1979). Hallicinogen consumption do not produce physical dependence but mild level of psychological dependence, no withdrawal symptoms, however, tolerance could be developed. All hallucinogens produce similar reactions but the intensity of the reaction varies according to the kind and amount used.

Hallucinogens users experience synesthesia, a sensation in which users report hearing a color, smelling music or touching a taste. Moods may swing from completely joy to absolute terror.
Designer Drugs: Designer drugs are drugs produced by chemist in their home laboratories. These are illegal drugs similar to the controlled drugs but are sufficiently different so that they escape governmental control. Designer drugs are said to produce effects similar to their controller counterparts. It is a great risk using this type of drug because its manufacturing is unregulated. The neuro-physiological effects of these home-made drugs can be quite dangerous.

Phencyclidine: Phencyclidine (PCP, angel dust) is unique because it produces multiple effects. It acts not only as hallucinogenic but also as analgesic, a depressant, a stimulant and an anaesthetic. This makes the typical PCP experience impossible to predict or describe. After consumption, the physical effects of PCP begin a few minutes and continue for four to six hours (Merki, 1996). PCP was studies for years during 1950s and 1960s and was founds to be a suitable animal and human anaesthetic (Pollock, Candace & Charles, 1979).

Cannabis
Cannabis (marijuana) is a wild plant (cannabis sativa) whose fibers were once used in the manufacture of hemp rope. It grows wild in nearly every part of the world. The leaves and flowering tops of the hemp plant are dried to obtain marijuana. Hash (commonly smoked in pipe) is obtained by collecting the sticky substance that comes from the flowers of the hemp plant. The immediate effects of smoking marijuana include increased heart rate, reddened eyes and increase feeling of well being. Marijuana  impair short term memory;

  • Users over estimate the passage of time; and users lose the ability to maintain attention to a task.
  • Damage of lungs, damage of immune system, a motivational syndrome, lung cancer are some of the long-term effects of marijuana use.

Narcotics
Medically, narcotics are used to relieve pain and induce sleep and are among the most dependence producing drugs. Narcotics can be sub-grouped into the natural, quasisynthetic and synthetic narcotic on the basis of origin.

Natural Narcotics: Naturally occurring substances derived from the oriental poppy plants includes opium (the primary psychoactive substance extracted from the oriental poppy), morphine the primary active ingredient in opium and the bane (a compound not used a drug). Morphine and related compounds have medical use as analgesic in the treatment of mild to severe pain.

Quansisynthetic Narcotics: Quasisynthetic narcotrics are compound created by chemical altering morphine. These laboratory produced drug are intended to be used as analgesic, but their benefits are largely out weighted by a high dependence rate and a great risk of toxicity (Durani, 2012). The best known of the quasisynthetic narcotic is heroin. Heroin comes from the dried milk of the opium poppy, also range from white to dark brown powder to a sticky, tar like substance. It is popularly known as house, smack, big H, junck and its being injected, smoked or inhaled ( if it is pure) (Merki, 1996).

Heroin given someone a burst of euphoric (high) feelings especially if its injected. This high is often followed by drowsiness, nausea, stomach cramps and vomiting. Users feel the need to take more heroine as soon as possible just to feel good again. Heroin ravages the body with long-term use. It is associated with chronic constipation, dry skin, scarred veins, and breathing problems. Users who inject heroin often have collapsed veins and put themselves at risk of getting deadly infections such as HIV/AIDS hepatitis B or C and bacteria inhalants.

Synthetic Narcotics: Meperidin (Demerol) and propoxyphene (Darvon), common postsurgical pain killers and methadone, the drug prescribed during the rehabilitation of heroin addicts, are synthetic narcotic. These opiate-like drugs are manufactured in medical laboratories. They are not natural narcotics or quasisynthetic narcotic because they do not originate from the oriental poppy plant (Pollock Candace & Charles, 1979). However, like true narcotics, these drugs can rapidly induce physical dependence.

Inhalants
Inhalants are a class of drug that includes a variety of volatile (quick evaporating) compounds that generally unpredictably produce drunk-like effects in users. They are substances that are sniffed or huffed to give the user an immediate rush or high. They include household product like glues paint thinners, dry cleaning fluid, gasoline, felt tip marker fluid, correction fluid, hair spray, aerosol deodorants and spray paints. Inhalants are breathed in directly from the original container (sniffed or snorting), from a plastic bag (bagging) or by holding an inhalant soaked rag in the mouth (huffing).

Inhalants make the user feel giddy and confused, as if he was drunk. Longtime users get headaches, nosebleed and may suffer loss of hearing and sense of smell. Inhalants are the most likely of abused substance to cause severe toxic reaction and death. Even it use can kill at one time (Durani, 2012).

Alcohol
Alcohol is a drug that is produced by a chemical reaction in fruit, vegetables and grass. That is, alcohol is created from the fermented grain, fruits or vegetable. Fermentation is the process that uses yeast or bacteria to change the sugar in the food into alcohol. Fermentation is used to produce many necessary items everything from cheese to medications. Alcohol has different forms and can be used as a cleaner, an antiseptic, or a sedative (Durani, 2012).

Effects of Drug and Substance Abuse
Brain damage: Brain is the centre of all the vital functions. When a drug causes a brain injury, alteration is being produced a times irreversible ones, in the organic functions. Also, when psychoactive substance destroys several thousands of neuron, the loss is final

Drugs make the organism develop tolerance. When a harmful substance is introduced into the human body, it reacts by trying to eliminate it. At the same time it prepares itself to tolerate it. This means that the drug users, in order to get the desired effects need a larger dose each time. Logically, the organic balance is broken when the dose is excessive and this produces very serious symptom even causing death in some cases (Melgosa, 2005).

Emotional problems: Drug abuse can cause or mask emotional problems such as anxiety, depression, mood swings, suicidal thoughts and schizophrenia. Infact, among teens with major depression, 34.6% report using drug (Casapalmera, 2012).

Unfortunately, drug use can also increase the severity of these emotion problems.
Behavioural Problems: Teens who abuse drugs have an increased risk of social problems, depression, suicidal thought and violence. According to a recent survey by the substance abuse and mental health administration, teens who abuse drugs are more likely than teens who do not abuse drugs to engage in delinquent behaviours such as fighting and stealing (Casepalmera, 2012).

Dependence: A long time use of drug may lead to dependence or desire for the drug. A person becomes psychologically and physiologically dependent on a drug.

According to Wayne and Dale (1998), Psychological dependence occurs when a person use the drug to satisfy an emotional need. Mild psychological dependence is called habituation. A person can be habituated to anything that gives a feeling of well-being. For example a person can become habituated to the caffeine found in coffee, tea, cocoa and cola drink because it seems to provide a lift during the day.

Physical dependence often results from tolerance on the other hand the body become use to a particular drug that it must have a certain amount in bloodstream and tissues all the time in order for the person to feel normal. Both psychological and physical dependence on drug is sometimes refers to as addiction.

Drugs affect specific organs. Alcohol for example attack the liver and the heart, the smoke and tar tobacco damage the lung, opium derivatives-heroin, morphine, methadone affect the brain considerably.
Risk factor: Using drug via needle parental or intravenous, increase their risk of blood borne disease like HIV/AIDs and hepatitis B and C. In Spain, two thirds of the HIV (AIDs virus) are transmitted by drug (Melgosa, 2005).

Mental disorder: Drug wakes up latent mental disorders and may also provoke them. The DSM-IV manual for psychiatric use list over 60 clinical disorders associated with drug taking (Melgosa, 2005).

Auto-accident: Drugs abusers are more likely to be involved in a car accident related injuries or death. One study showed that 4 to 14% of drivers who are injured or die in traffic accident test positive for THC (Casapalmera, 2012)."







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