Substance abuse refers to the harmful or dangerous use of psychoactive substances, including alcohol and illicit drugs. One of the key impacts of illicit drug use on society is the negative health consequences experienced by its members.
substance abuseis the medical term used to describe a pattern of substance (drug) use that causes significant problems or distress. This can be missing work or school, using the substance in dangerous situations, such as driving a car.
May cause legal problems related to substances or ongoing substance use that interferes with friends, family relationships, or both. Substance abuse, as a recognized medical brain disorder, refers to the abuse of illegal substances, such as marijuana, heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamine. Or it could be the abuse of legal substances, such as alcohol, nicotine, or prescription drugs. Alcohol is the most common legal drug of abuse.
Substance abuse, also known as drug abuse, is the use of a drug in quantities or by methods that are harmful to the individual or to others. It is a form of substance-related disorder. Different definitions of drug abuse are used in public health, medicine and criminal justice contexts. In some cases, criminal or antisocial behavior occurs when the person is under the influence of a drug, and long-term personality changes can also occur in people.
In addition to potential physical, social and psychological harm, the use of some drugs can also result in criminal penalties, although these vary widely by local jurisdiction. The purchase, sale and non-medical use of all the above-mentioned drugs are illegal, and these psychotropic drugs can only be obtained on the black market. There is evidence to suggest that substance abuse disproportionately affects the population of homeless veterans. Drug abuse is observed in several different age groups and in people from almost all walks of life and socio-economic strata.
The use of psychoactive drugs without medical supervision is associated with significant health risks and can lead to the development of drug use disorders. For example, GHB, a natural substance of the central nervous system, is considered a drug and is illegal in many countries, while nicotine is not officially considered a drug in most countries. Dependence varies from drug to drug in scope and effect; it can be physical or psychological or both. Concerned physicians are educating themselves on how to identify drug-seeking behavior in their patients and are becoming familiar with the red flags that would alert them to potential prescription drug abuse.
UNGASS marked a shift in the overall discourse of drug policy to highlight the public health and human rights dimensions of the world drug problem and to achieve a better balance between supply reduction and public health measures. Advances in research have led to the development of evidence-based strategies to effectively address substance abuse. Some people may begin to feel the need to take more than one drug or to take it more often, even in the early stages of their drug use. Substance abuse is usually diagnosed by a family doctor, psychiatrist, or qualified mental health professional.
A variety of substance abuse treatment (or recovery) programs are available for inpatients or outpatients. There is now a deeper understanding of substance abuse as a disorder that develops in adolescence and, for some people, it will develop into a chronic disease that will require lifelong vigilance and attention. The onset of drug use, including alcohol, is more likely to occur during adolescence, and it is common for older teens to experiment with substances. However, men are more likely to abuse drugs than women, single people are more likely than married people, and urban dwellers are more likely than rural dwellers.