TOPIC: Drugs and Drug Abuse


  • Definition
  • Symptoms of Drug Abuse
  • Types of Drugs and how they can be abused
  • Causes of Drug Abuse
  • Effects of Drug Abuse
  • Curbing Drug Abuse
  1. Definition Of Drug:

The World Health Organization defines Drug as any substance other than those required for the maintenance of normal health which when taken into living organism may modify one or more body functions.

A drug is, in the broadest of terms, a chemical substance that has known biological effects on humans or other animals.

Examples of Drugs

Examples of Drugs

Drug abuse is the continued misuse of drugs. Drug abuse, also called substance abuse or chemical abuse, is a disorder that is characterized by a destructive pattern of using a substance that leads to significant problems or distress. It can also be defined as a patterned use of a drug in which the user consumes the substance in amounts or with methods which are harmful to themselves or others, and is a form of substance-related disorder. Widely differing definitions of drug abuse are used in public health, medical and criminal justice contexts.

Drug Abuse is the illegal, wrong or excessive use of drugs and other substances.

Drug abuse by Students

Drug abuse by young people

  1. Symptoms of Drug Abuse

Family signs and symptoms: Exhibiting lackadaisical attitude towards laws and parents, sneaking to unusual secret places, isolation from family members, hiding in the room e.t.c.

Physical signs and symptoms: Frequent minor illnesses such as sluggishness, frequent naps, smell of marijuana, alcohol and menthols.

Symptoms of drug abuse

Symptoms of drug abuse

Social signs and symptoms: Over popularity and excessive greetings in a noisy way with friends, breaking of rules and regulations, promiscuity.

School signs and symptoms: Fighting always with teachers and other students, bullying, sleeping in class, hating and avoiding schools, frequent truancy.



Emotional signs and symptoms: These include talking to one’s self repeatedly, smiles and laughter, traces of insanity, violent acts like stabbing, breaking bottles.

     3.  Types of Drugs and how they can be abused.

Substance Name Common Name Mode of usage Health effects

Cocaine hydrochloride: blow, candy, coke, crack, ganja, rock, flake, snow

Snorted, smoked, injected

Irritability, feelings of exhilaration, panic, paramoia, reduced appetite, tremors

Tobacco Nicotine Found in cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco (snuffs, chew, spit tobacco) Smoked, snorted and chewed Increased blood pressure and heart rate, chronic lung disease, cardiovascular diseases, stroke cancer of the mouth.
Alcohol Found in spirit, beer, liquor and wine Swallowed(through drinking) Euphoria, mild stimulation, loss of coordination, visual distortions, impaired memory
Club drugs (MDMA-methylene-dioxy-ethamphetamine) Ectasy, adam, clarity, eve, lovers speed, peace uppers Injected, snorted, swallowed

Mild hallucinogenic effects, chills, muscle cramping, sleep disturbances, anxiety, emphatic feeling increased, sweating, and depression.

Desxtrometh Orphan Found in some cough syrup and cold medication Swallowed Euphoria, slurred speech, confusion, distorted visual perceptions and dizziness
Dissociative Drugs Ketamine Ketalar: Cat valium, Special k Injected, snorted, swallowed Impaired motor function and anxiety, Feelings of being separated from one’s body and environment
Injecting drug into the body

Injecting drug into the body

  1. Some causes of Drug Abuse

Doubt: Some people do not believe in the specific prescription made by the medical doctors hence the need to increase their dosage.

Psychological suppression: Some people believe that the best way they can cure psychological problems like depression, sorrow, anxiety, sadness and frustration is through the use of drugs.

Inspiration: People such as musicians, athletes, students, drivers and writers believe that the easiest way to gain inspiration is to remain under the influence of drugs.

Poverty: Some people believe that the only way to shift their minds away from poverty is to remain under the influence of drugs. It will also give them the confidence needed to commit crimes such as robbery, killing.

Bad Influence: Bad company of friends, neighbors, colleagues can lure into drinking, smoking and engaging in immoral behavior.

Smoking after school hours

Smoking after school hours

Boldness: Naturally shy people sometimes feel that using drugs can boost their moral and enable them face the public.

   5.  Effects of Drugs and Drug Abuse:

There are two kinds of effects, the positive and the negative.

a) Positive uses of drugs: The positive effects of drugs can be sited as follows.

For Preservation Purpose: Most drugs are used for the preservation of things and human lives e.g. the mortuary needs drugs to preserve a dead body, we need drugs to preserve most food we eat.

For Growth: Some humans and animals use drugs for growth, many agricultural product need drugs for growth which can be said to fertilize them and enhance proper germination.

For Healing: Many drugs are used to cure different ailments and diseases either in plants, animals or humans e.g. catarrh, cough, headache.

b) Negative Uses of Drugs: Negative effects on individuals include –

Death: Untimely death as a result of drug abuse

Mental Disorder: Some drugs when abused can cause insanity

Social Vices and Problems: People found under the influence of drugs can engage in social vices like rape, cultism, robbery, terrorism and fraud.

Hooliganism and Violence: People who engage in drug abuse have a tendency to be aggressive in their behaviors and they end up becoming touts, wayward, destitute.

Loss of Job: Employees who are drug addicts may end up misbehaving or showing lackadaisical attitudes at work and this can lead to retrenchment.

6. Curbing Drug Abuse

There are certain mediums through which drug abuse can be curbed. They are:

Public Symposia: People should be enlightened on the harmful effects and dangers of drug abuse ranging from children to adults. Also handbills and posters can be place at strategic places.

School: The schools and institutions should take it upon themselves to teach drug abuse as part of the subject curriculum in Civic education, Social studies, International Law and also organize seminars to orientate students.

Mass media: Mass media such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines and internet should include the dangers of drug abuse on their various advertisements and public orientation programmes.

Drug Sale: Only professionals should be engaged in the sale of drugs and also anyone coming to buy a drug should endeavor to go with a prescription from a doctor to the pharmacy.

The Police/Security: All forms of security agents should fight seriously against the public sale of hard drugs and their distribution within the country. Any offender caught should be charged and punished; this will serve as a warning to others.

Government agencies working to curb drug abuse:

NAFDAC: National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control was established on November 15th, 1993.

NDLEA: National Drug Law Enforcement Agency – They coordinate all drug laws, enforce punishments on offenders, eradicate illicit cultivation of narcotic plants, makes sure no illicit drug is smuggled in and out of the country and also perform policing functions on dealer of narcotics.


  1. Over popularity is a ………….. symptom of drug abuse. a) School b) Social c) Family d) Emotional
  2. ……………. Is an example of the type of club drug that can be abused. a) cocaine b) heroine c)ecstasy d) spirit
  3. Drug Abuse is the ………………. and excessive use of drugs a) irresponsible b) illegal c) legal d) immaculate.
  4. ……………… is an example of the negative use of drugs a) insanity b) healing c) growth d) sleep
  5. You can’t use drug to cure one of the options listed a) catarrh b) cancer c) depression d) malaria



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