A Parents Guide To The Drug Talk

Chapter 1 Drug Basics

Drugs are chemicals, which can change the way bodies work. If you have ever been sick and take medicine, you already have an idea about the different types of drugs. Medicines are drugs that doctors provide to those who are sick. But, did you know that even medicines can be dangerous if they are not taken carefully. There are some kinds of drugs that are dangerous all the time. These are not given by physicians or doctors. Cigarettes and alcohol are included in these kinds of drugs. Even if people can purchase these legally at stores, these can be dangerous. Illegal drugs are also harmful and these may include marijuana, LSD, heroin, ecstasy, and cocaine.


Different Kinds of Drugs


You have probably heard that drugs can be bad for you. But, why are they bad? And what does that mean? Below are the different kinds of drugs you should be aware of for you to know their effects and impacts to your life:
Medicines – The Legal Drugs


If you are sick and you take medicine to feel better, you already know this kind of drugs. Medicines are considered as legal drugs. This just means that doctors are allowed to give medicines for patients. Store may also sell them and individuals are allowed to purchase them. However, it is not safe or legal for people to take medicines in any way they like or buy them from those who are selling these in an illegal manner.


Alcohol and Cigarettes


Alcohol and cigarettes are other kinds of legal drugs. In most countries, people who are 18 years old and above can purchase cigarettes and those who are 21 years old and above could purchase alcohol. However, excessive drinking and smoking aren’t healthy for adults and are prohibited to kids.


Illegal Drugs


When individuals talk about drug problems, they typically mean abusing illegal or legal drugs including ecstasy, cocaine, marijuana, crystal meth, heroin, and LSD. Generally, marijuana is an illegal. But, due to its health benefits, some states let doctors recommend it to adults for particular illnesses.


Illegal Drugs: Why Are They Dangerous?


Illegal drugs are not good for everyone. They are bad for teens and kids whose body are still growing. Illegal drugs could damage one’s heart, brain, and some organs. For instance, cocaine can cause heart attack even in a teen or a kid.


While using such drugs, individuals are also less able to perform well in school, sports, and several activities. It is frequently harder to think clearly and create wise decisions. People may do dangerous or dumb things, which could hurt themselves or some people when using drugs.


Why Some Use Illegal Drugs?


Sometimes, teens and kids try using drugs to fit in a group of peers. There are cases that they are bored or curious. Someone could also use illegal drugs for several reasons, but in most cases, they take these for helping persons escape from reality. Drugs might make someone feel better and forget about their problems temporarily. But, this escape could last only until drugs wear off.


Drugs do not solve problems. Using drugs could cause other problems aside from the problems you have. Somebody who is using these could become addicted. This just means that the body of the person may become so accustomed to have this drug that he or she can’t do well without this.


Once you are addicted to these drugs, it is tough to stop taking them. Stopping may cause withdrawal symptoms including sweating, tremors, and vomiting. Such sick feelings may continue until the body of the person has already adjusted to being free from drugs again.


How Would You Know If Someone Is Using Drugs?


If someone is using such drugs, you will notice changes in how person acts or looks. Below are some of the signs, but it is also essential to remember that depression or another issue could cause such changes. Some who use drugs could:


 Lose interest in going to school
 Hang out with kids who are also using drugs
 Become negative, worried, cranky or moody all the time
 Want to be alone all the time
 Can’t concentrate
 Sleep everytime especially during class
 Always gets fights
 Gain or lose weight
 Have runny nose all the time
 Cough a lot
 Have puffy or red eyes


What You Can Do to Help?


If you think your kid is using drugs, the best thing you should do is to have some talk about drugs. Drug talk is essential most particularly if your kid is always curious about drugs and want to know if these are really risky or not.
When having a drug talk, you should understand about drugs and why these are dangerous. Being familiar with some terms like the following can be helpful:


 Addiction – Someone is experiencing addiction if she or he becomes dependent on drugs all the time.


 Depressant – Depressants are drugs that slow a person down. Physicians prescribe depressants in helping people be less anxious, angry or tense. Depressants can also relax muscles and make anyone feel less stressed out or sleepy. Several individuals can also use such drugs in an illegal manner to slow themselves down as well as help bring on sleep particularly after using different types of stimulants.


 Stimulant – Stimulants speed up the brain and body. Some of these are cocaine and methamphetamines. These have opposite of depressants. Typically, stimulants can make someone feel energized and high. When effects of stimulants wear off, a person will feel sick or tired.


 Narcotic – Narcotics dull the senses of the body and relieves pain. These may cause someone to fall into the stupor, sleep, slip into coma, and have convulsions. Particular narcotics like codeine are legal if provided by doctors in treating pain. Heroin is also an illegal narcotic as this has harmful side effects and can be very addictive.


 Hallucinogen – Hallucinogens are a drug like LSD, which changes the mood of the person and makes her or him hear or see things that are not really there or think of some strange things.


 High – This is the feeling, which drug users like to acquire when taking drugs. There are numerous kinds of highs like a spacey feeling or very happy, which someone has special powers like ability to see the future or fly.


 Inhalant – Like gasoline or glue, once sniffed could provide users an immediate rush. Inhalants generate a quick feeling of getting drunk, which can be followed by staggering, confusion, sleepiness, and dizziness.

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