Commonly Abused Drugs

Table of Contents

    Marijuana Abuse

    person rolling marijuana in a jointThough illegal to use or have possession of, marijuana is a commonly abused drug and many people are unaware of its harmful effects. Marijuana abuse can lead to distorted perceptions , impaired coordination as well as difficulty with thinking , problem solving, learning and with memory.

    Those affected by marijuana addiction can find help in outpatient programs. Medication can be prescribed to reduce marijuana withdrawal symptoms.

    Talk therapy and rest are usually the best practices for this particular addiction treatment.

    Alcohol Abuse

    “passingAlthough legal to use, obtain and possess, alcohol is another commonly abused drugs with the potential for serious consequences. Alcohol abuse manifests as drinking becomes increasingly important and takes priority over everything else of importance, including job, friends and family. It can present a danger to ones' self and others, as alcohol abuse increases.

    The physical and emotional effects of alcohol abuse can often impair judgement to a dangerous level. While some people are able to maintain this pattern for a long amount of time, alcohol abusers are at risk for progressing to alcoholism.

    Cocaine Abuse

    person snorting cocaineCocaine is an illicit or illegal commonly abused drug. Cocaine abuse can lead to addiction, severe health problems and death. Many cocaine abusers report to be trapped in a vicious cycle of increased cocaine abuse in failed attempts to recreate the pleasurable sensations of their first exposure to cocaine. Due to the intense cravings and high relapse rate associated with cocaine addiction, recovery in a supportive environment, such as residential treatment centers, provide the recovering addict much more support than private or outpatient therapy.

    In most cases, the cocaine addict will attend outpatient therapy after completing residential cocaine addiction treatment for continued support. In conjunction with outpatient therapy, most addicts are urged to attend 12 step support groups to augment their commitment to recovery.

    Valium Abuse

    “personValium is a commonly abused drug that requires a doctor's prescription to legally obtain and use. Valium abuse, if continued over a long period of time, will lead to tolerance of the drug. When this occurs, larger doses of Valium will be needed in order to produce the same effects.  Additionally, Valium abuse can lead to physical dependence which means that withdrawal will occur when the Valium abuse is reduced or stopped suddenly and it can be very dangerous.

    In many cases withdrawal can be easily managed by a qualified healthcare provider in a medically-based detox facility, but treating withdrawal is not the same as treating addiction. Drug addiction can be effectively treated with behavioral-based therapies once medical stabilization has been achieved in drug detox.

    Heroin Abuse

    person heating up spoon with lighterHeroin is an illegal commonly abused drug which is extremely harmful to the user and to society. Heroin abuse often leads to heroin addiction which is one of the hardest drug addictions to beat. Heroin is one of the worst drug addictions and one of the hardest to break, causing the most damage both physically and mentally.

    Heroin related deaths are not uncommon and may come as a result of taking a mixture of drugs. All drug addictions that have to do with heroin need to be treated on an inpatient basis at a qualified addiction treatment center.

    The detox facility within the treatment center will medically manage the heroin withdrawal symptoms and other medical problems will also be addressed.

    Percocet Abuse

    person taking white pillsPercocet is a commonly abused drug that requires a doctor's prescription to legally obtain and use. If Percocet abuse takes place there is the potential for physical dependence and addiction. Those who abuse Percocet may try to enhance the euphoric effects, while at the same time increasing the risk for serious medical consequences, such as overdose. A useful precursor to long-term treatment of opioid addiction is detoxification.

    Detox itself is not a treatment. Rather, its primary objective is to relieve withdrawal symptoms while the patient adjusts to being drug free. To be effective, detox must be followed by long-term treatment that either requires complete abstinence or incorporates a medication, such as methadone or buprenorphine, into the treatment program.

    Prescription Drug Abuse

    man reading prescription bottlePrescription drug abuse can refer to the intentional misuse of a drug without a written prescription from a doctor. Because certain prescription drugs induce a state of euphoria in addition to relieving pain, they are popular street drugs for intentional prescription drug abuse.

    Some people have legitimate reasons for taking these controlled substances. Doctors will prescribe very strong opiate drugs to manage debilitating or chronic pain problems. Though they play a critical role in pain management, opiates aren't appropriate for all pain. Treatment needs to be tailored depending on a patient's specific condition and physician supervision is critical to avoid prescription medication abuse and addiction.

    Physical dependence, which is sometimes unavoidable, develops when an individual is exposed to a drug at a high enough dose for long enough that the body adapts and develops a tolerance for the drug. This means that higher doses are needed to achieve a drug's original effects and if the patient stops taking the drug, withdrawal will occur. But the development of physical dependence doesn't necessarily lead to addiction in all cases. It means that the individual can't just stop taking the drug. Instead the dose has to be tapered off to gradually decrease a drug's amount over time to prevent withdrawal reactions.


    Hotline to Call

    For help with any of these commonly abused drugs, or for drug abuse or addiction of any kind, call our Drug Abuse Helpline at 1-888-744-0069Who Answers?.  We offer support, counseling and referral services 24/7. All calls are toll-free and confidential, so call now!


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    Last updated on June 11, 2019
    2019-06-11T11:00:23+00:00
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