Most people know that extended drug use can take its toll on both the mind and the body, but what are the exact effects that drugs have on the human body? Well, it depends on multiple factors. The type of substance being consumed, the amount that’s being taken, the frequency of the dosing, not to mention the tolerance level of the person taking the substance as well as if they are mixed with something else. There are both short- and long-term effects, and these effects can be physical and psychological. Here are a few different substances and the effects that they have on the body.
Depressants, Hallucinogens, and Stimulants
Drugs change the way your brain communicates with the nervous system. There are three main categories of drugs, and they each have a different effect on the body. Depressants slow down the function of the nervous system. Things like alcohol, cannabis, and opiates are depressants. Stimulants do the exact opposite. Things like nicotine, caffeine, and ecstasy all speed up the processes happening in the brain making you feel more alert. Hallucinogens are the last main category of drugs. These substances distort your perception of reality.
Physical harm from drug use
One thing that a lot of people fail to consider is that drug use can do damage to not only your own body but also to those around you if you aren’t careful. Drug use can lead to risky or out-of-character behavior that can feel out of control. Once a substance has entered the brain, drugs affect many aspects of the human body. You are more likely to get into an accident, be assaulted, assault someone else, or do something you didn’t intend. Long-term physical effects can include damage to organs. Throat and lung damage from smoking is a very common example. Drugs can cause cancer, lead to birth defects, lead to spread of disease, baldness, tooth rot, acne, and other skin issues. The severity of these issues correlates with the amount of substance abuse taking place.
Psychological harm from drug use
There are a wide variety of mental problems that can arise from substance abuse. As more and more of the substance is consumed, the brain slowly retrains its reward systems so that the substance becomes a top priority. When anyone tries to quit the habit, anxiety is one of the most common symptoms to appear first. Depression is another common problem that recovering addicts face because not only are there withdrawal symptoms, but many of these patients are dealing with feelings of shame and self-hate for getting themselves into such a situation in the first place.
Substance Abuse Treatment with American Treatment Network
American Treatment Network is a US treatment facility with locations in Havertown, PA and Newark, DE that provides an addiction network to recovering addicts struggling with alcohol and opioid abuse. If someone you know is struggling in the battle with addiction, set up an appointment. The decision to get help isn’t an easy one, but we are here to make the process easy.