The use and abuse of drugs are serious issues that cannot just be wished away or ignored. If left untreated, the use and abuse can develop into full scale drug dependence. For this reason, it is important to recognize early, the signs and symptoms of drug and alcohol abuse among your peers.
Most times, alcoholics and drug addicts are last to know that they have a problem without knowing they are exhibiting signs of their addiction. While alcohol and drug use and abuse, manifests in different ways, they share a number of common symptoms and signs such as:
Dishonesty: Most times because they live in denial, when confronted, will deny any use of them. They become artful liars and find ways and means to hide their addiction.
Blood shot eyes: They have perpetual red eyes and their pupils could be either too small or larger than normal. Often times, they wear sunglasses to cover the redness of their eyes.
Nose bleeding: This specifically relates to a drug addict who snorts all kind of stuff, from burnt rubber, to burnt toothpaste. When toothpastes finish too quickly, don’t just sweep it under the carpet, find out why.
Personal grooming: Deterioration in appearance and personal cleanliness and or Unexplainable wounds, cuts or abrasions. Most have unusual smell on their breath, body and clothing.
Unstable coordination: They are wobbly, shaky, show tremors and are sometimes incoherent or slurred speech and exhibit generally, impaired or unstable coordination.
Unexplained change in personality and attitude: Sudden mood shifts, angry outbursts, laughing at nothing, irritable, agitation, hyperactive, drop in attendance at school or work, change in relationships, being unnecessarily secretive, acting suspiciously.
Money problems: Unusual and unexplained need for money or having financial troubles, borrowing or stealing of money and valuables. Money starts to disappear in small amounts at first then later in large quantities.
Paraphernalia: Finding drug items in any form, it could be excess drugs or cough mixtures, pipes, syringes, rolling papers, bongs, tourniquets, burned tinfoil or spoons; this signifies high possibility of drug use.
Questions and answers
Question: Can one have a harmless addiction?
Answer: Potentially no! Others might argue that such things as ‘social use’ or ‘passion’ (e.g. watching T.V; sports, hobby; foods) might not be harmful. When your ‘passion’ or ‘social use’ is detrimental to your studies or morals, it is a harmful addiction. But as long as these habits or addictions don’t impact negatively on your life or cause problems for anyone else, then they are ‘casual addictions.’
Question: Some friends of mine have started smoking weed, calling it soft drug. What is the difference between hard and soft drugs?
Answer: These are arbitrary terms with no clear criteria or scientific basis, however, hard drugs are drugs that are addictive and injectable, notably heroin, crystal, meth. Marijuana is generally the only drug amongst soft drugs, although some include nicotine and alcohol, because they are legalized for adult use only. The term soft drug could be termed ‘getaway’ drug also. But, I’ll like you to make up your own mind from the under listed: