It often helps to know something about drugs. A drug is a chemical substance. It can bring about a physical, emotional or mental change in people. Alcohol and tobacco are drugs. The caffeine found in coffee, tea, cocoa, and cola drinks is a drug.
Drug abuse is the use of a drug, legal or illegal that hurts a person or someone close to him. A drug user is the person who takes the drug. There are many kinds of drug users. We have the experimental users. These people may try out drugs once or twice. They want to see what the effects will be. Recreational users take drugs to get high. they use drugs with friends or at parties to get into the mood of things. Regular users take drugs all the time. But they are able to keep up with the normal routine of work, school, housework, and so on. Dependent users can’t relate to anything other than drugs. Their whole life centers around drugs. They feel extreme mental or real pain when they need drugs.
All drugs can be harmful. The effect of any drug depends on a lot of things. How a drug acts depends on how much or how often it is taken. It depends on the way it is taken. Some drugs are smoked. Others are swallowed or injected. Drugs act differently on different people. The place and the people around you affect the way a drug works.
Sometimes people take more than one drug. Multiple drug use is not only common, but also harmful. A deadly example is the use of alcohol and sleeping pills at the same time. Together these drugs can stop normal breathing and lead to death.
It is not always easy to tell if someone is on drugs. In the early stages, drug use is often hard to see. Sometimes people like drugs or need drugs so much they can’t do without them. We say they are dependent. Only a few kinds of drugs, like the narcotics, can cause physical dependence. But almost any drug, when it is misused, can make you think you need it all the time. By this time it is too late and the person has been “hooked.”
Tobacco, alcohol and marihuana are three very common drugs. These three are called the gateway drugs.” They are the first ones most people use and become dependent on.