Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

With the use of drugs being such a controversial issue in today’s society we felt as a group it was important to further explore this issue. As we possess a high interest in how drugs affect a number of social groups. These groups of course range from young teens to high-class older individuals who will have different reasons and different acceptable standards of behaviour.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper


The question that is being explored in our presentation asks what drugs are doing to our society. This means exploring the various groups that use recreational drugs their reasons for this the effects that drug use has and the methods to help prevent and stop use of drugs. By recreational drugs we mean such substances as marijuana and heavier more addictive drugs as heroin and cocaine. For which the use of these has increased throughout society over time.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Recreational drugs are not limited to any particular group in society meaning that a very wide variety of people choose to use these drugs these of course include teenagers, parents, business people and often very dedicated students for a number of reasons. For a long time the common misconception that only youths use drugs and those who do are disrespectful and dishonest has become out dated and inaccurate. Teenagers can use drugs and there are certainly individuals who do who are disrespectful and dishonest however this is more likely to do with an individual’s personality than their use or experimentation of drugs.

The survey we conducted showed that most people believed it was more common for youths in the 14 to 22 age group to use recreational drugs. This was closely followed by the 23 to 30 age group, while the 13 and under age group was considerably further behind. The survey question that followed indicated that people also believed that drug users were irresponsible and inconsiderate. This slightly supports the misconception that teens are more likely to be involved with recreational drugs.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

The reasons why people choose to use drugs will differ from group to group. While for many the use of drugs serves as an escape from the stresses of everyday life for others it is exactly used as it is called for recreational purposes. People also take drugs to feel happy and relax.

Drugs are everywhere. Nearly everybody knows somebody who has used or uses drugs, whether the user is a friend or a celebrity. Since drugs are everywhere, so are the effects of drugs. While drugs affect everyone around them, some of the effects that drugs have on a user include becoming antisocial, losing sight of goals, being content with less, transforming into a different person, and gambling with health.
Withdrawing from loved ones, such as friends and family, a drug user usually becomes antisocial. After using drugs over time, they tend to avoid most or all public situations. If a teen is experimenting or using drugs while in school, he or she may never begin and sometimes quit extracurricular activities such as clubs and sports. This type of person becomes so involved in their drugs that they eventually just stay to their self. A user's withdrawal from normal social functions may also cause problems within various relationships. While an addict may not mind the distance widening between them and their boyfriend, their mom, or their best friend, their loved one's do care and sometimes feel hurt. Drugs simply steal and imprison the people who use them.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper
Not only do drugs cause a person to draw away from their friends and family and social activities, but they also cause a person to withdraw from their goals. Developing a general lack of interest, a drug user may lose sight of their future. They may stop attending school or work and not complete homework or simple, necessary tasks. For a student using drugs, college suddenly may not appear important anymore. They may settle for a career at Mc Donald's or Burger King. Workers or parents may not seem concerned with earning their next raise or even taking care of their children.

The most disturbing thing about drug addiction is that people in different countries of the world are becoming addicted to all kinds of drugs. There are different types of street drugs such as – cocaine, meth, marijuana, crack, heroin etc. Heroin is one of the dangerous drugs that suppress your heart’s work and is appropriate to achieve narcotic effect.

The alarming rate of drug consumption has always been a problem and has detrimental effects on the society. Personal and family problems also lead to drug abuse among youngsters who fail to deal with personal problems. The physiological effects of drug addiction can be difficult to endure and this is why the addict must be treated for their condition. The worst thing is that drugs are that they affect youth in every country of the world.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

The term drug not only means medicine, but fatal narcotics with different specifications. These drugs have their evil effects on mind and body cells of the addicts. The addict becomes dependent on the drug to a great extent that he/she cannot stop using it. Despite of having full knowledge of its effects on health, addicts use it on a regular basis.


Drug addiction is basically a brain disease that changes the functioning of brain. There is an uncontrollable desire to consume drugs, as a result of which addicted people engage in compulsive behavior to take drugs. The addicts find it impossible to control the intake of drugs, as a result of which they fail to fulfill day-to-day responsibilities in efficient manner. Drug addiction is also referred as drug dependency, as the addict develops dependency for particular substance.

Essay on the Signs of Drug Addiction

Drug addiction is a compulsive disorder that leads an individual to use substance habitually to achieve desired outcome. Millions of people in the world are suffering with drug addiction and the number is expected to increase in the coming years. If the person is using drugs for a longer period, the outcome may change. For example – early experimentation with drugs is rooted in curiosity. However, as the frequency of substance becomes frequent – the body starts to depend in it to function properly.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

The most common signs and symptoms of drug addiction are – obsession with a particular substance, loss of control over the usage of drugs, abandoning the activities which you used to enjoy, etc. Drug addiction may have long term impact on life and one may develop severe symptoms such as – fatigue, trembling, depression, anxiety, headache, insomnia, chills and sweating, paranoia, behavior changes, dilated pupils, poor coordination problems, nausea etc.

Essay on the Causes of Drug Addiction

There are a number of reasons why youth and teenagers are addicted to drugs or related substances. Lack of self-confidence is considered as one of the primary causes of drug addiction. It can also be due to excessive stress, peer pressure, lack of parental involvement in child’s activities etc. some people consider drug addiction can be the cause of drug use and ignorance. The ignorance of drug addiction along with physical pain of condition becomes a primary cause of drug addiction. Here are some of the causes of drug addiction.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

High Level Stress

Young people who have just started their college life or moved to a new city in search of job often face problems with life change. They are more likely to alleviate stress through the use of drugs and similar substances. Finding an easy fix often seems easier than facing the real problem and dealing with it. Trying illegal drugs can lead to addiction and becomes a long term habit.

Social Pressure

Today, we are living in a highly competitive world and it is difficult to grow in such world. There is always a peer pressure in young and old people. However, it is never visible. A lot of young people expect to experience the pressure to use drugs, smoke and drink alcohol. Young people find it difficult to be the person who doesn’t drink or smoke. As they feel isolated and like a social outcast, they make a habit of taking drugs.

Mental Health Conditions

Another primary reason for trying drugs is mental health condition. People who are emotionally weaker tend to feel depressed about the facts of the world. They look for ways to feel free and live life in a normal way as they go through the period of growing up. In such situation, they make a habit of taking drugs and can lead to addiction.

Psychological Trauma

A history of psychological trauma appears to increase the risk of substance abuse. More than 75% of people who suffered from psychological trauma use drugs as a part of self-medicating strategy or provide an avenue towards self-destructive behaviors. Women are more sensitive to drugs than men, and hence need less exposure to similar effects. The availability of these drugs plays an integral role in perpetuation of addictive behaviors within families.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Exposure to Drug Abuse

Exposure to drug abuse in which the young people are raised is another cause why young people get addicted to drugs. If the individuals grow up in an area where adults use drugs, then the person is likely to try the substance themselves. Setting a good example is extremely important to keep them off drugs and related substances. Providing genuine information about drugs is the best way to prevent drug addiction.

Essay on the Effects of Drug Addiction

There are many negative effects of drug addiction on physical and mental health. As said, drug addiction refers to compulsive and repeated use of dangerous substances. The effects of drug addiction are wide and profound. The psychological effects of drug addiction comes form the reason that the user is addicted to drugs as well as the changes that take place in brain. Many people start using drugs to handle stress. However, the psychological effects of drug addiction involves craving of the substance and using it to the exclusion of all else.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Emotional Effects

The emotional effects of drug addiction include – mood swings, depression, violence, anxiety, decrease in everyday activities, hallucinations, confusion, psychological tolerance to drug effects etc. Besides these, there are many physical effects of drug addiction that are seen in the systems of the body. The primary effects of drug addiction take place in brain, which changes the brain functions and impacts how the body perceives pleasure.

Physical Effects

Other effects of drug addiction include – heart attack, irregular heartbeat, and contraction of HIV, respiratory problems, lung cancer, abdominal pain, kidney damage, liver problem, brain damage, stroke, seizures, and changes in appetite. The impact of drug addiction can be far-reaching and affects every organ of the body. Excessive usage of drugs can weaken immune system and increase susceptibility to infection.

Brain & Liver Damage

The effects of drug addiction are seen in people because the drug floods the brain repeatedly with chemicals such as – serotonin and dopamine. The brain becomes highly dependent on these drugs and cannot function without them. The effects of drug addiction are also seen in babies of drug abusers and can be affected throughout their life.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Drug addiction can cause the liver to work harder, causing significant liver failure or damage. Regarding brain function, drugs can impact daily activities by causing problems with memory, decision making, mental confusion and even permanent brain damage.

Short Term Effects

Different drugs affect body in different ways. There are some short term effects that occur in drug users depending on the amount of substance used, its purity and potency. Drugs can affect the person’s thinking, mood and perception to a great extent. Drugs can temporarily impair motor functioning and interfere with decision making and even reduce inhibition. The most common substances of drug addiction include – opiates, alcohol, barbiturates, inhalants etc.

A lot of people do not realize the damage caused by drug addiction because the short term effects are not apparent at first. The individual may feel quite invincible and unaware that drugs can actually affect almost every system in the body. The long lasting effects of drug addiction may not be known to addict. If treatment is not sought in time, the physical and emotional health will deteriorate.

Long Term Effects

The long term effects of drug addiction can have disastrous consequences on physical and mental health. As the body adapts to the substance, it needs increasing amount of it to experience the desired outcome. As the individual continues to increase the dosage, he/she may develop physical dependence. The individual may face deadly withdrawal symptoms, once he/she stops using the substance.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Legal Consequences

Drug abuse not only causes negative effects on your physical and mental health, but can have legal consequences. Individuals may have to deal with the legal consequences for the rest of their life. A lot of companies require the employees to take drug test before offering job. Driving under the influence of drugs can lead to serious legal action and even heavy fines.

By understanding the physical impact of the substance, individuals can make informed decision regarding their health. Remember that it is never late to seek help, when it comes to treat drug addiction. There are many rehabilitation centers that help you combat drug addiction in a supportive environment.


Essay on the Prevention of Drug Addiction

As said, prevention is always better than cure. It is always best option to deter people from drug abuse. Though it is practically impossible to prevent everyone from using drugs, there are things we can do to avoid drug addiction. Here are some effective tips to prevent drug addiction.

Deal with Peer Pressure

The biggest reason why people start using drugs is because of their friends or colleagues who utilize per pressure. No one in this world likes to be left out, especially teens and youngsters. If you are in such situation, you should find a better group of friends who won’t pressure you into harmful things. You should plan ahead of time or prepare a good excuse to stay away from tempting situations.

Treat Emotional Illness

Individuals suffering with any mental condition such as – anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress etc. should seek help from a physicist. There is a strong connection between mental illness and drug addiction. Those with weak emotional status may easily turn to drugs.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Learn to Deal with Pressure

People of today’s generation are overworked and often feel like taking a good break. However, they make the mistake of turning to drugs and end up making life more stressful. Many of us fail to recognize this. The best way is to find other ways to handle stress. Whether it is taking up exercising or reading a good book, you should try positive things that help in relieving stress.

Understand the Risk Factors

If you are not aware of the risk factors of drug addiction, you should first know about drug abuse. Individuals who are aware of the physical and emotional effects of drug addiction are likely to overcome them. People take up drugs when something in their life is not going well and they are unhappy about their life. One should always look at the big picture and focus on priorities, instead of worrying about short term goals.

Develop Healthy Habits

Eating a well-balanced diet and doing regular exercise is the best way to prevent drug addiction. A healthy body makes it easier for people to deal with stress and handle life effectively, which eventually reduces the temptation to use drugs.

The above tips are a just a few ideas that can help prevent drug addiction. However, if the person has already developed drug addiction, he/she should seek drug detox treatment at the earliest.

Essay on the Treatment of Drug Addiction

Drug addiction can be managed effectively like other chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, asthma etc. Treatment of drug addiction is becoming personalized. The comprehensive treatment options not only address addiction, but treat the underlying issues resulting in addiction.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Though there are many options to treat drug addiction, it is not easy. Drug addiction is a chronic disease and one can’t stop using drugs within a few days. A lot of patients need long term or repeated care to stop using drugs completely. Drug addiction treatment depends on the severity of drug abuse. The treatment must stop the person from using drugs as well as keep him away from drugs.

Different treatment methodologies are employed in treating drug abuse. The treatment plan will be devised as per the condition of the addict. It is essential that the treatment is tailored to the unique individual as there is no single treatment that works for all.

Inpatient drug abuse treatment is one of the options that allow the addict to focus on his/her recovery. Attending this treatment facility can increase the chances of completing the drug addiction rehabilitation program, especially if the addict does not have good support system at home.

Outpatient drug abuse treatment is ideal for those addicts who have a supportive environment at home. It is usually recommended for those who want to attend short-term inpatient treatment program.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is another treatment option that is highly effective in treating drug addiction issues. CBT helps in controlling negative thought patterns that lead to drug abuse. Patients can identify the triggers that cause them to use drugs and learn to respond without the need to turn to the substance.


Drug addiction is a complex disease that results from a number of factors such as genetic predisposition, history of violence at home and stress. Researchers have been able to identify the factors that lead to drug abuse. Understanding the root cause of drug addiction is one of the best ways to improve treatment options and outcomes of drug addiction in future.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

A lot of people do not understand why people get addicted to drugs and related substances. They mistakenly view drug abuse as a social problem and characterize the addict as a weak person. Though there is no scientific evidence on how exactly drugs work in brain, it can be successfully treated to help people stop abusing drugs. There are many treatments that help people counteract the disruptive effects of drug addiction and regain complete control over life.

Behavioral therapy is the best way to ensure success in most of the drug addicts. The treatment approaches are tailored to meet the drug abuse pattern of patients. It is not uncommon for an individual to relapse and start drug abuse again. In such case, an alternate treatment is required to regain control and recover completely.

Targeted Populations in Drug Abuse

Stage Performers

Drugs are usually abused by stage performers such as musicians, singers, and dancers due to the stress or fear they feel of performing on stage.

The most commonly abused drug by pop musicians is cocaine, as it provides alertness and a feeling of euphoria. These effects make the performer feel that they own the stage and help them deliver a high-quality performance. Sometimes, this may be a wrong example to the common audience who may also want to experience this feeling, and thereby engage in misusing drugs.

The death of Michael Jackson on June 25, 2009, was due to the acute intoxication of propofol (anesthetic drug) and benzodiazepine (anti-anxiety drug).

Homeless or Street Youth

There is a high proportion of homeless youths due to several reasons like child abandonment, poverty or poor socio-welfare systems, lack of orphanages and runaway kids. They do not have enough guidance on healthy living and are easy targets for drug lords or drug trafficking.

Street youth initially experiment with drugs for recreational purposes and later get addicted, which in turn leads to drug abuse. This makes them indulge in various anti-social activities.

Drug Abuse among Refugees

The impact of high stress on refugees leads them to use drugs or psychotropic substances. Depression due to the separation from their families, anxiety because of language barrier, racism, discrimination and physical trauma during pre-migration or illegal transit phases force these refugees towards drug abuse, mainly to deal with the stressors mentioned above.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Refugees who are addicted to drugs require money to procure these drugs and this makes them indulge in crime such as robbery, assaults and various criminal activities; this in turn can lead to the formation of gangs and can slowly become a major security threat for the nation.

Psychological Effects of Drug Abuse

Euphoria and Illusion: Drugs would distort the normal perception capacity and functionality of the brain and make a “pseudo” visualization and perception. It would create illusion and artificially make you feel euphoric, excited or pleasurable.

Stress: Drugs would make you feel as if it is helping you in relaxation and forget about all the issues that make you stressed. However, in reality, it is the opposite. Long-term use of drugs can cause a deep impact on the way your brain works, and lead to increased anxiety and stress.

Anxiety and Depression: Feeling low after alcohol consumption is common. Some drugs would make you feel depressed, while others make you depressed and anxious because of something that happened while you were under its impact. People often use drugs as a way to overcome their depression, but in reality, the drug use can often worsen these.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Mental illnesses: Scientists have showed that there is a link between drug use and serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia, yet it’s still unclear whether serious drug use leads to mental illnesses. However, a person having any chronic psychological illness has an increased chance of drug abuse.

Health and Sexual Effects of Drug Abuse / Drug Addiction

Accidents and Injuries:Drug distorts your perception and thoughts and it would make you do unwarranted acts that you would not do normally. Drugs can increase your chances of getting seriously injured or losing your life through falls and road accidents and can even pose a threat or cause harm to others around you.

Internal Organ Damages:Prolonged use of certain addictive can cause damage to the internal organs such as brain, liver, kidneys, heart, lungs, throat and stomach. For example marijuana smoking is 10 times potentially more harmful to lungs than cigarettes. 2-3 marijuana cigarettes cause more damage to the lungs and respiratory tract than 20-25 tobacco cigarettes. Continuous use of marijuana can damage your brain and destroy your memory, learning attention and understanding capacity.

Methamphetamine, a powerfully addictive drug, can destroy your teeth and damage your heart. Once the drug enters in a person’s body, it causes the neuro-receptors to release a great amount of dopamine, leading to the typical euphoria. Short-term effects include extreme wakefulness, a lasting boost of energy and a lack of appetite. Long-term effects include high blood pressure, stroke and serious heart problems.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Risk of Infectious Diseases: Needle-sharing for injecting drugs would put you at risk of catching serious diseases like HIV / AIDS, Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B etc. Apart from this, sharing pipes or cigars would expose the users to infections like common cold, flu, pneumonia, or tuberculosis.

Sexual Effects: Illegal drugs are widely perceived as sexual stimulants and aphrodisiacs: however the impact is often contradictory to the desired one. Cannabis drugs like marijuana are regarded as aphrodisiacs, increasing the good mood and sexual arousal by stimulating sexual activity. However, the fact is that marijuana distorts the sense of time, and an illusion of prolonged arousal and orgasm is experienced by the user. Long-term users of cannabis have low sperm counts and low testosterone levels and women can have abnormal ovulation.

Drugs like MDMA or Ecstasy impede erections and orgasms for both genders, and can cause erectile dysfunction in males. Under the influence of this drug, you will not remember to have safe sex and you would end up having risky unprotected sex with one or multiple sexual partners. It can lead to unwanted pregnancy or contracting of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as syphilis, gonorrhea and HIV/ AIDS.

Social Effects of Drug Abuse

Effects of Drugs on relationships and your future

Drug abuse has an immediate impact on the body and mind but it can also affect your future and your relationship with others. When drug use becomes an important part of your life, your relationships suffer. You would behave more violently for the access of money for your need for drug. Conflict and breakdowns in communication would become a routine. Drugs would affect your ability to concentrate and focus at work. The side effects of using drugs like a hangover feeling can reduce the ability to focus. Poor performance at job can make you lose your job.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Safety: Use of illicit drugs increases chances of being in dangerous situations and compromise the safety of self and others. Under the influence of some drugs, you drive rashly compromising the safety of yourself and other road users. Drug abusers are at greater risk of overdosing.

Financial pressures and mounting debts: Drug Addiction can become an expensive affair to the family. In extreme situations, people addicted to drugs try anything from selling household goods to illegal activities

like theft and robbery, to secure money to get their next dose. Drug addicts also tend to behave violently for the need of money, with family members, often ending up with crimes like murder.

Violence: Drugs can increase the likelihood of violent behavior. Drug-induced violence can lead to serious injury to the drug users and to others. Serious crimes like murder or rapes could be committed unknowingly under the influence of drugs.

Homelessness: Spending most of the money on drugs would make you poor and leave no money to cover the basic living expenses like rent, food, or utility bills.

Legal issues: Buying, selling, possessing or making illicit drugs is illegal. It’s also against the law to give prescription drugs to people who don’t have a prescription from a doctor, yet several prescription drugs are routinely abused. Getting caught in possession of illicit drugs or in violent acts can land the drug user in jail or mental rehabilitation centre.

Corruption: Drug lords and people in drug trade bribe politicians and police officers with hefty ransom for securing their trade. Traffickers try to corrupt or intimidate officials for removing blocks in the drug transit and often have private armies. Judges, public officials and even police officers are lured into the trap of corruption because of illicit drug trade. Honest officials initiating courageous campaigns against the drug traffic are often killed or kidnapped.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Signs of Drug Abuse

  • Neglect in grooming
  • Changes in appetite and sleep patterns
  • Sudden weight loss or weight gain
  • Abnormality in pupil size or bloodshot eyes
  • Slurred speech, lack of concentration or poor memory
  • Mood swings and unusual fears or anxiety
  • Secret behavior
  • Strange agitation or hyperactivity
  • Avoiding social places or hangouts with friends or family

Commonly Abused Medications

Prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications such as anxiety pills, sleep-inducing medicines, and pain relievers are the widely misused or abused drugs by the public. Other substances include cocaine, hallucinogens, narcotics or psychotropic injections and marijuana.

The medicines are misused mostly by combining one or more of these substances.

  • Barbiturates - phenobarbitone
  • Benzodiazepines - flunitrazepam, alprazolam, diazepam, lorazepam
  • Hallucinogens such as dimethyltryptamine (DMT), Lysergic acid Diethylamide (LSD)
  • Narcotics - opium, Heroin, morphine, codeine
  • Stimulants - caffeine, amphetamines, cocaine

The pharmacy law should be strictly reinforced at times and regular inspection in must be carried out in pharmacies to ensure that all medications are properly dispensed as per the guidelines provided by the health ministry.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Drugs Used to Treat Drug Abuse or Addiction

  • Buprenorphine
  • Naloxone
  • Methadone
  • Suboxone
  • Naltrexone

Tips on How to Deal with Drug Abuse

  • Before treatment is initiated, it is necessary for to find out if the patient is suffering from any pre-existing mental issues that can make them prone to drug abuse. Doing a dual diagnosis is essential for the success of treating patients with drug abuse.
  • Take all the medications exactly as prescribed, and do not stop unless advised by the physician.
  • Never double the prescribed dose with the intention of overcoming drug dependence.
  • Knowing and handling withdrawal symptoms of abused drugs effectively.
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy for developing problem-solving skills.
  • Participating in drug education or drug abuse awareness conducted by educational institutions or social welfare groups.
  • Proper parenting or family care and support.
  • Attending motivational speeches and interviews.
  • Explaining the effects of drug abuse in pregnant women or who wish to conceive to avoid possible damage to the fetus.
  • Socializing with friends and family frequently or involving in a social group will be of great help.
  • Taking up a part-time job or volunteering in some rehabilitation programs will keep one engaged, thereby reducing the craving for drugs greatly.
  • Joining in fitness programs such as aerobics, gym or some short-term study courses is recommended.
  • Adopting pets is the best way to have a companion, especially for those who live single.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper


  • Get acquainted with the laws and punishments for illegal use or drug trafficking.
  • Adolescent community support is required to reduce the negative environmental influences. This helps build positive structures for healthier societies and behavior.

Drug abuse is rife in many countries. Billions of dollars are spent internationally preventing drug use, treating addicts, and fighting drug-related crime. Although drugs threaten many societies, their effects can also be combated successfully. This essay looks at some of the effects of drug use on society, and suggests some solutions to the problem.

Drug abuse causes multiple problems for countries and communities. The medical and psychological effects are very obvious. Addicts cannot function as normal members of society. They neglect or abuse their families, and eventually require expensive treatment or hospitalization. The second effect is on crime. Huge police resources are needed to fight smuggling and dealing. Criminal gangs and mafia underworlds develop with the money from drugs.

However, the menace of drugs can be fought. Education is the first battle. Children need to be told at home and in school about drugs. People need to be aware of the effects so that they can make avoid this problem. A second approach is to increase police manpower and powers to stop dealers and to enforce the law. However the main target should be the user. Families and counselors need to talk to children and people at risk. Parents need to look at their children and help them to Jobs are needed to give people a role in society.

In conclusion, although the problem of drugs may seem impossible to eliminate, there are concrete steps that can be taken to weaken the hold of drugs on society. The danger from drugs is too great to ignore.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

‘Drug addiction refers to the habit of taking the substance that affects the nervous system. Some of the drugs are cocaine, heroin, opium, brown sugar, hashish, etc. The people who are drug addicts have different drugs regularly. Nowadays, especially the young boys of towns are victimized. They are badly intoxicated in drugs.

Nowadays, drug addiction proves to be a major and serous social problem. This problem is rapidly increasing especially in urban regions. The teenagers have been victimized by thi problem. The boys of high schools and higher secondary schools are fond to have been drug addicts. The percentage of the school girls who have been intoxicated in drugs is very low. That’s why this is the major social problem among the boys who Ar teenagers.

Some responsible circumstances and causes have paved the way to drug addiction. The children seem to be imitating the adults behaviour. When the adults smoke, the children are lured and they start smoking. And smoking leads them to drug addiction. Some of the boys start taking drugs imitating the habit of their friends. Some people start taking drugs because of being pessimistic; they are hopeless about their future. The people who are fed up with life do not want to live for a long time. They want to enjoy the life taking drugs for a few days. Some of the smugglers of drugs provide the youths with drugs free of cost at the beginning. Their prime motive is to make the youths habitual or intoxicated in taking drugs. When the youths become drugs addicts, they go to the sluggers to buy the drugs. Similarly, some Sadhus also take some drugs. Some of the youths for to these Sadhus and learn to take drugs from them.

Drugs addiction is harmful not only for the addicted but also has negative impact on the fabric of the society. The effects of such an addiction can cause dangerous changes in the mind, body and spirit of the drug addict. The most disturbing aspect of drug addiction is that it is reaching epidemic proportions in the whole world. People in our part of the world are increasingly becoming addicted to all kinds of drugs including street drugs and prescription drugs etc.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Street drugs include cocaine, heroin and crack, marijuana and meth, while prescription drugs include those such as Valium, Oxycontin, Percocet and Ritalin etc. The price of drugs can be very heavy. Simple ill-effects of such addiction include physical itchiness, coma and even premature death. On the other hand, the psychological ill effects can make a person completely dependent on taking drugs in order to survive.

Drugs addiction is a very serious problem and even if the addict is using prescribed drugs, the ill effects can be very harmful indeed. It is, therefore, important that the government takes administrative, legal and policy measures that put an end to the menace of drug addiction. The right kind of information can help the addict avoid overdosing and it can also prevent medical-related complications.

The ill effects of addiction to drugs can be very difficult to endure, which is why the addict must be treated for their condition at the earliest. A lot of research is being done on how addiction to drugs harms people and societies. An individual that takes drugs will expect certain changes to take place in his being.

In the US, addiction to drugs is quite widespread. One study on this problem revealed that one in every five American aged between sixteen and fifty nine had used at least one drug. What’s more is that about half (46 percent) of Americans, aged between 16 and 21, admitted having used drugs in different phases of their life. Even more worrying is the fact that approximately twenty million people, aged above twelve years, have used illegal drugs in the US. In fact, about 1.47 percent of Americans are addicted to drugs.

North America, which includes US and Canada and even Mexico, has a major drugs addiction problem. The problem is no less dangerous in Central America where countries such as Belize, Guatemala and Nicaragua are major centers for drug abuse.

Drugs addiction in Pakistan is no less worrisome. Though its neighbors (India, Bangladesh and Maldives as well as Nepal) all have drugs addiction issues, Pakistan is the worst affected throughout South Asia. It is, after all, home to the largest market for heroin consumption. What’s more, Pakistan is also a major exporter of heroin and, in fact, approximately fifty tons of opium is illegally brought into Pakistan to produce heroin.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and even Sri Lanka all have major issues with use of drugs. Afghanistan, for example, has about 28,513,677 drug addicts, while Bangladesh has 141, 340, 476 addicts. India has a staggering 1,065, 070,607 drug users, while Pakistan has 159, 196, 336 addicts.

The worst thing about being addicted to drugs is that it is affecting the youth in every part of the world in a major way. The trouble starts among the school-going children but the problem is exacerbated with abutment by those who wish to earn money out of selling drugs.

The problem among children and youth arises because of a perception that they seem to harbor the notion of their inadequacy for failing to measure up to their expectations of their elders. Nowadays it has become fashionable for the actors and singers to include tales of drugs addiction and sexual references in their music. So instead of inculcating good values in the youth, the entertainment industry is responsible for propagating the use of drugs, which is further fueling the addiction to drugs in both the developed and developing world.

The youth has become the target of major drug peddlers. These peddlers sell drugs and package them as symbols of revolution and freshness but have no regard for the consequences of their actions. The youth that takes to drugs are more likely to commit suicide because of the harmful effects of the drugs they are taking. Misinformation about drugs is another reason for these deaths as the addict or user may take the drugs in wrong doses, which can then lead to a fatality.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Drugs addiction among the youth is killing them morally and socially as well as psychologically and even physically. And, drug barons are becoming increasingly wealthier by supplying these drugs that are causing untold misery.

It is time that societies and governments took a firmer view about preventing and stopping drugs addiction. There should be a community plan that should be implemented to stop addiction to drugs. This plan must identify the specific drugs that youth are using. It should build on existing resources such as existing drug abuse prevention program mes and it should also develop short-term goals relevant to proper implementation of research- based drug abuse prevention program mes.

In addition, the community plan must project its long- term objectives to ensure that resources are made available and in addition, the community plan must also incorporate ongoing assessments to evaluate the effectiveness of their preventive measures and strategies.

In fact, all preventive measures need to address different forms of drug abuse and addiction and should also target different types of drug abuse and addictions. It should also be tailored to address risks that are specific to certain populations or audience characteristics. It must be aimed at specific populations and at major transition points such as at middle-school level.

Unless serious measures are taken now, the very future of a large chunk of today’s youth will be severely compromised. The problem of drug addiction is too real and serious to be ignored. The governments need to involve communities and media in highlighting the perils associated with the drug addiction. Media has a responsibility to highlight such issues with a view to educating people and building a consensus among them to forge a united stand against such scourges.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

The perpetrators of doom and gloom are well entrenched in the power structures and have formed transnational partnerships for their nefarious purposes. The response to deal with such an organized menace should also be concerted for effective output. It calls for sustained engagement and coordinated action among countries. Individual efforts cannot produce desired results. For how long shall we turn a blind eye to such critical issues? It is now time to be responsible in our actions.

For many young people, using alcohol, drugs, or other substances like cigarettes is just part of growing up. Many of them try these substances only a few times and stop, while others may continue to use them on a more regular basis.

Young people may try a number of substances, including alcohol, household chemicals (inhalants), prescription and over-the-counter medicines, illegal drugs, and cigarettes. They use alcohol more than any other substance. Marijuana is the illegal drug that young people use most often.

Young people use these substances for many of the same reasons that adults do—to relax or feel good. But they may also have other reasons for using substances. For example, they may want to know what it feels like to get high. Or they may want to rebel against their parents or fit in with their friends.

Using alcohol or drugs can affect young people's general health, physical growth, and emotional and social development. It can also change how well they make decisions, how well they think, and how quickly they can react. And using alcohol or drugs can make it hard for young people to control their actions. For some young people, alcohol or drug use may turn into a substance use problem.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Parents can play a key part in teaching their children about alcohol and drug use by talking honestly and openly about the effects that alcohol and drugs can have on their children's health, schoolwork, and relationships.

Social behaviour is disturbed in many substance abuse and psychiatric disorders. Given the consensus that social behaviors of lower mammals may help to understand some human emotional reactions, the aim of the present work was to provide an up-to-date review of studies on the changes in social behaviour induced by drugs of abuse. Various animal models have been used to study the relationship between drugs of abuse and social behaviour. Herein, we describe the effects of different substances of abuse on the three most commonly used animal models of social behaviour: the social play test, the social interaction test and the resident–intruder paradigm. The first is the most widely used test to assess adolescent behaviour in rodents, the second is generally used to evaluate a wide repertoire of behaviors in adulthood and the latter is specific to aggressive behaviour. Throughout the review we will explore the most relevant studies carried out to date to evaluate the effects of alcohol, cocaine, opioids, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), cannabinoids, nicotine and other drugs of abuse on these three paradigms, taking into account the influence of different variables, such as social history, age and type of exposure. Drugs of diverse pharmacological classes induce alterations in social behaviour, although they can be contrasting depending on several factors (drug, individual differences and environmental conditions). Ethanol and nicotine increase social interaction at low doses but reduce it at high doses. Psycho stimulants, MDMA and cannabinoids reduce social interaction, whereas opiates increase it. Ethanol and psycho stimulants enhance aggression, whereas MDMA, opiates, cannabinoids and nicotine reduce it. Prenatal drug exposure alters social behaviour, whereas drug withdrawal decreases sociability and enhances aggression. As a whole, this evidence has improved our understanding of the social dimension of drug addiction.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Nearly every country in the world plays a part—as producer, consumer, or transit point—in the multi billion-dollar illicit drug trade that supplies more than 150 million people every year and keeps on growing.

To combat this trade, many countries over recent decades have launched so-called “wars on drugs” that entail crackdowns on participants large and small in the drug business, including harsh penalties for users.

Human Rights Watch has long documented the widespread human rights abuses resulting from this approach: in the United States, the devastation that disproportionate prison sentences for drug offenses have wrought on individuals and their families and disturbing racial disparities in drug law enforcement; in Mexico, the killings committed in the name of com batting drugs; in Canada, the US, and Russia, how fear of criminal law enforcement deters people who use drugs from accessing necessary health services, exposing them to violence, discrimination, and illness; in Afghanistan and Colombia, how narcotics production has fueled armed groups opposed or allied to the government;  in India, Ukraine, and Senegal, how cancer patients suffer severe pain due to drug control regulations that render morphine inaccessible; and in China, Vietnam, and Cambodia, the “drug rehabilitation centers” where people are subjected to torture, forced labor, and sexual abuse.

But there was a growing sense within Human Rights Watch that this approach did not go far enough—that the problem did not lie merely with ill-considered policies or their abusive execution. Rather, the criminalization of drugs itself seemed to be inherently problematic. Especially when it came to personal possession and use, imposing the full force of the criminal justice system to arrest, prosecute, and incarcerate appeared contrary to the human rights to privacy and personal autonomy that underlie many rights.

Heavy emphasis on enforcing criminal prohibitions on drug production and distribution was also dramatically enhancing the profitability of illicit drug markets and fueling the growth and operations of groups that commit atrocities, corrupt authorities, and undermine democracy and the rule of law in many countries.

In my own work as Human Rights Watch’s Colombia researcher from 2004 to 2010, it was clear that the illicit drug market was a major factor in the country’s long-running war involving left-wing guerrilla groups, right-wing paramilitary groups, and security forces.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Certainly, Colombia’s staggering levels of abuse—massacres, killings, rape, threats, and kidnappings that displaced more than 3 million people—had roots that went beyond the drug trade and predated the explosion in the cocaine market in the 1970s. But most armed groups in Colombia in some way benefited from the illicit trade. The paramilitaries, in particular, were among Colombia’s biggest drug lords. Often, they threatened or killed people living on land they wanted to control for coca production or as drug transportation corridors. Illicit drug profits helped pay for their weapons and uniforms, wages for their “soldiers,” and bribes for public officials to evade justice for their crimes.

So it became increasingly difficult—as we documented the atrocities, called for justice, and pressed the US to enforce human rights conditions on its assistance (the US provided Colombia more than US$5 billion in mostly military aid in 2000-2010)—to ignore that many of the abuses we advocated to end would inevitably continue in some form unless US and global drug policy itself changed.

My later work on US policy towards such countries as Afghanistan and Mexico, and on the US criminal justice system, only strengthened my view—which others at Human Rights Watch shared—that drug criminalization was inherently inconsistent with human rights.

After much discussion, the organization in 2013 adopted a policy calling on governments to decriminalize all personal use and possession of drugs. We also urged them to consider—and eventually adopt—alternative policies on the drug trade to reduce the enormous human rights costs of current approaches.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Change is urgent, as our research consistently shows.

Medellín: The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

Alex Pulgarín knew a lot about the power that the illicit drug trade gave to criminals—and the damage it could inflict.

When I interviewed him in 2007, he was a fresh-faced 30-year-old with an easy smile who looked younger than his age but spoke with the confidence of a seasoned player in the complicated politics of his city, Medellín, a major hub for Colombia’s cocaine trade.

As a child in the 1980s, Alex witnessed the bloody “war” the infamous Medellín cocaine kingpin Pablo Escobar waged against Colombia’s government in a bid to secure a ban on extraditions to the US. The car bombings, airplane hijackings, and frequent assassinations that Escobar ordered garnered Medellín the label, “murder capital of the world.”

So many rejoiced when Colombian security forces, with US backing, killed Escobar in 1993. But the bloodletting didn’t end there. As the world turned its attention elsewhere, others discreetly filled his shoes.

One of them was Diego Murillo, also known as “Berna,” a former Escobar rival who in the 1990s went on to build his own drug trafficking empire in Medellín, forging close ties with the paramilitaries. As a teenager in a low-income neighborhood, Alex saw his peers get swept into a seemingly endless cycle of brutality and death as Berna and others battled for control over the city.

But when I interviewed Alex, city officials were claiming that Medellín had turned a corner. The government and paramilitaries had announced a “peace deal,” and hundreds of young men had turned in weapons at “demobilization” ceremonies, signing up for government stipends. Former paramilitary leaders received reduced prison sentences. Homicide rates were near their lowest in years.

Among those who supposedly demobilized was Berna. Several of his henchmen formed the Democracy Corporation, a group with the ostensible mission of working with the city to help demobilized paramilitaries get education and jobs and reintegrate into society.

But Alex told a different story. The corporation, he said, was a front for organized crime, still under Berna’s control. The government’s backing gave the corporation a veneer of legality, allowing it to exert political influence while retaining its ruthless dominance over much of the city. “Peace with a knife to your throat,” as Alex called it.

A Democracy Corporation leader, Antonio Lopez (“Job”), had ordered his accomplices to kill demobilized individuals who disobeyed him—especially “coordinators,” point people for the demobilized in each neighborhood. Others confirmed what Alex said: the apparent peace that Medellín was experiencing was not due to Berna’s demobilization, but rather the result of his monopoly over crime in the city after he defeated most competing groups. And he was retaining that control in part through the Democracy Corporation.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper


While Alex knew many people in the world of local crime, he had taken a different path. He had become an activist, joined the left-leaning Democratic Pole party, and won a spot on his neighborhood action council. Respected and well-liked, he dreamed of running for higher office.

But Alex was now in Job’s sights. A few months earlier, Job had asked him to run for the Medellín City Council as the Democracy Corporation’s candidate, trying to capitalize on Alex’s popularity. Alex would get a car, armed guards, and a stipend if he agreed. He refused.

Instead, he began reporting what he knew to police and prosecutors, recording his calls with coordinators who were being threatened and sharing them with the authorities. He spoke during community meetings with international agencies and the Catholic Church. “Aren’t you afraid you’ll get killed?” I asked when we met. He brushed off the question.

Two years later, in 2009, it looked like Alex might emerge unscathed. Berna had been extradited to the US, where he pled guilty to cocaine trafficking charges and received a 31-year sentence from a federal court in New York City. Job had been gunned down, reportedly by rivals, in an upscale restaurant near Medellín. And Alex testified in a trial against another Democracy Corporation member, John William López, or Memín. Several witnesses were murdered during the trial, but Memín was convicted of forcibly interfering with elections, conspiracy, and forced displacement.

But it is hard to escape the grasp of Colombia’s criminal networks. That December, armed men—Memín associates—accosted Alex on the street and shot him several times in broad daylight. He died at the scene.

A Resilient and Lucrative Global Market

Profits from the illicit drug trade in Colombia have not only fueled the country’s conflict but have also enabled criminals to buy off or intimidate public officials. More than 100 Colombian congress members and countless other officials have been investigated in recent years for alleged collusion with paramilitaries. In Medellín, new groups with shadowy leadership structures have replaced Berna’s organization, much as Berna’s had replaced Escobar’s. Violence—often via threats and displacement—is pervasive.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

These problems extend well beyond Colombia. In many countries illicit drug profits are an enormous motivator and funding source for groups that commit atrocities, corrupt authorities, and undermine democracy and the rule of law.

Indeed, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), illicit drugs constitute the largest income source for transnational crime and may account for one-fifth of all crime proceeds. The UNODC also estimated the value of the 2003 global illicit drugs market to be $322 billion at retail—higher than the gross domestic product of 88 percent of the world’s countries at the time.

Afghanistan, for example, produces around 90 percent of the world’s opium (along with cannabis). In 2009, the late Richard Holbrooke, then-US special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, decried how enforcing drug policies—particularly US efforts to eradicate poppy (a crucial crop for many impoverished Afghan farmers)—drove people “into the arms of the Taliban.”  But that has only been part of the picture. The illegal opium market has dramatically distorted the country’s power structure, bankrolling armed groups such as the Taliban and local warlords responsible for numerous atrocities. It also fuels rampant corruption, making efforts to apprehend and prosecute those implicated in these crimes extraordinarily difficult.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Meanwhile, in Mexico the homicide rate has exploded, with at least 80,000 people killed in the country’s “war on drugs” since 2007 (El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala face similar problems). The US has provided more than $2 billion in funding to Mexico to combat drugs during that time. Yet the Mexican security forces deployed in the country’s “war on drugs” have themselves often been involved in torture, extrajudicial killings, and other abuses.

Nearly every country in the world plays a part—as producer, consumer, or transit point—in the multi billion-dollar illicit drug trade that supplies more than 150 million people every year and keeps on growing.

To combat this trade, many countries over recent decades have launched so-called “wars on drugs” that entail crackdowns on participants large and small in the drug business, including harsh penalties for users.

Drug addiction is a major public health problem that cost the U.S. a staggering $468 billion in 2005, according to the NY Times.com. (References 3) Costs result from disease, crime, accidents, child abuse, domestic violence, homelessness and lost wages. (References 2 and 5). Alcohol abuse, smoking and illegal drug use cause one in four deaths and many other serious economic and social consequences. (References 5) The negative effects of substance abuse affect everyone.


Crimes related to drug abuse include stealing to obtain money needed to buy drugs, buying or selling drugs and offenses related to the lifestyle of drug abusers that results in illegal activities. (References 4) Half of those arrested for serious crimes including murder, robbery and assault were under the influence of illegal drugs.(References 2) The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) reports that approximately 70 percent of state prisoners and 57 percent of federal prisoners used drugs on a regular basis before incarceration. (References 4) Economic costs of crime include law enforcement, court and incarceration. (References 3)Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Health Care Costs

Several of the most costly health care problems are the result of substance abuse. (References 2) Included are lung disease from smoking, liver cirrhosis from alcohol, overdoses (References 3), HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and tuberculosis. (References 5) Tobacco use results in 430,700 deaths and alcohol abuse causes100,000 deaths annually (References 5) Although an estimated16,000 deaths annually are attributed to illegal drug use, this is probably a conservative number. (References 5)

Child Abuse and Neglect

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), 50 to 80 percent of child abuse and neglect cases involve substance abuse by the child's parents. (References 2) Endangered children put into foster care from their parent's drug abuse cost approximately $904 million in 2005. (References 1)Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper

Other Effects

Over 75 percent of domestic violence cases were committed by a person using alcohol or drugs. (References 5) Drugs, often combined with alcohol, are used by 10 to 22 percent of drivers involved in crashes, according to the NIDA. (References 2). In 2005 exploding methamphetamine labs cost $61 million for injuries, deaths and toxic waste cleanup. (References 1) One third of the homeless suffer from drug or alcohol abuse. (References 2) Some major costs could not be measured, including the burdens on the families and friends of addicts and on children who are not put into the foster system.Drugs, Society And Human Behavior Paper