It is natural and right to use drug when one is having an unwarranted or strange feeling of his/her health in relation to Professional health and government approved medical doctors prescription, because, being healthy is one of the reasons for actualizing our lives good aspirations of becoming contributiive citizens to national development. Notably, there are drugs that when taken can help us achieve all forms of stable living such as- drugs to put one to sleep, relieve pains and anxiety, to restore our used energy. And also, there are drugs that affect blood pressure, fertility and appetite. But when these drugs are used without medical supervision, they can cause serious health problems.

  1. Drug abusers generally do not understanding the risks that drugs pose to physical, mental, social and emotional well-being. Drug abuse (mostly among the young people) can disrupt the lives of users. This is because, drugs misuse often lead to problems at home, at school and may even drop out of school. At home, an abuser may withdraw from family and friends as he or she becomes more dependent on drugs. At work, the influence of drugs may cause poor habits such as lateness or carelessness on the job, and this could lead to loss of job.
    Lesson Objectives:
    By the end of this chapter, students should be able to:
    1. List methods of drug use;
    2. Identify some common ways youths misused drugs.
    3. Discuss the risk factors in drug abuse;
    4. Explain and be aware that sharing injection needles increase the spread of HIV/AIDS among drug addicts.
    Methods of Drugs Abuse
    The taking of a drug for its medically intended purpose, following appropriate amount, frequency, strength and manner is referred to as drug use. In contrast, drug abuse is the taking of a drug for a non-medical purpose and in manner that can damage a person’s health or ability to function. Drug abuse can also be described as taking a drug without proper prescription, or self administration of drug in a way that deviates from the approved medical or social pattern. Lesson to learn from my precepts above is that ‘all drugs can be abused, even those prescribed by the physician. Example, using or administering a drug for the purpose of inducing sleep, alertness or relaxation. All these amount to drug abuse. Though, curiosity, lack of confidence, trying to fit into a peer group, search for excitement, trying to have a grown up feeling, reduction of stress and frustration, and even the availability of the drugs at home and reachable places by young people causes drug abuse and misuse.
    Methods of drug misused are ;
    1. Ingestion: This also called ‘swallowing’, many drugs such as tablets, capsules, syrups are taken through the 👄 with water or without water.
    2. Inhalation: This is an intake of drugs through the respiratory system or organ. Inhalants(anesthetic gases) such as aerosols, petroleum products, or solvents, including cocaine, ate inhaled or sniffed into the body through the nostrils. In whichever way it is inhaled, the drug’s effect on the central nervous system is immediate. These drugs are inhaled to induce intoxication, excitement, aggression or hallucination.
    3. Injection: This involved injecting drugs directly into the blood stream, through the capillaries, arteries or veins. Drugs in form of liquid (syrups) and other powdered form, e.g. cocaine, is frequently mixed with a liquid and injected directly into the vein. The intravenous injection results in the most rapid and most intensive sensation.
    4. Smoking
    Drugs like marijuana (Indian hemp) are smoked either rolled in paper, leaf or put in a pipe.
    5. Absorption through the skin
    Drugs used in this form are mild body creams. Some are used to maintained the skin while some are used to treat skin diseases.
    Drugs misused is the wrong use of drugs that differs from the medically-intended purpose, amount, frequency, strength, or manner. Misuse of drugs may occur in the following ways;
    1. When a patient misunderstood the direction for prescribed drugs. For example, not taking the drugs at stipulated times, periods, or intervals.
    2. When a patient share a prescribed drugs with a friend or family member for whom the drugs was not prescribed for .
    3. When a patient take the prescribed drugs for a purpose or condition other than that for which it was intended. Administering drugs intended for the treatment of stomach ache for headache.
    4. When a patient take a dosage other than the recommended. In this case, it may involved overuse (or overdose).
    5. Taking drugs to induce sleep without seeking for prescription from a qualified medical personnel.
    6. Taking drugs to gain confidence or boldness to commit crimes such as, suicide, rape, assault, hurting someone or onself.
    7. Taking drugs to achieve full sexual gratification (satisfaction).
    8. When any drugs is used in any of the above ways it may cause health problems. For example, under-dosage of an antibiotics, which is administered over a periods of time, but for less than the recommended period leads to development of drug resistance by the causal-micro organism or parasites. Also, overdose of drugs such as Chloroquine through self-medication and its continuous use for a long period can cause blindness or heart failure.
    Social Risk Factors in Drug Abuse
    The following are the social risk factors of drugs use and abuse:
    1. Being brought up in a drugs dependent family: A child that grows up in this type of family will see nothing wrong in using drugs any how.
    2. Having negative self-esteem
    A person with negative self-esteemb is never satisfied with needs and may be setting unrealistic goals.
    3. Being unable to resist peer pressure
    In some groups, drugs are often a part of social events and in the desire to fit in, the person certainly has to conform to the norms or rules of the group.
    4. Being economically disadvantaged
    The little money the drugs user has is always spent on drugs.
    5. Experiencing family disruption
    A drug abuser may withdraw from family and friends as he or she becomes more dependent on drugs.
    6. Mind-altering drugs, e.g alcohol and marijuana slow users’ reaction and often impairs users’ sense of reasoning and judgment.
    Other risks or consequences of drug abuse include:
    i). The high tendency to attempt or commit suicid, risk of contracting HIV infection;
    ii). Gradual death of the liver(from chronic use of alcohol).
    iii) Arrest by the NDLEA for drug possession;
    iv) Impaired sense of reasoning;
    v). Sexually transmitted diseases;
    vi). Unwanted pregnancy.
    Drug use and HIV/AIDS
    Human immunodeficiency Virus(HIV) live only within body cells and blood fluids, and not outside of the body. It can be transmitted through the anal or virgina sexual intercourse with infected person, transfusion of infected blood, infected mother to unborn child and sharp objects such as needles, knives,razor and blades. Therefore students are adviced to stay away from sharp objects at all times.
    Needles or syringes cotton wool used to inject drugs such as herion and cocaine are sometimes contaminated with the blood of the user. If such needles are shared, a small amount of one person’s blood can be directly injected into another person’s blood stream. Injectable drugs, e.g. Heroin are responsible for much of the spread of HIV infection among injectable drugs users. It is, therefore, generally unsafe to share needles as HIV can easily be transmitted from an infected person to a healthy person by this means.