Psychodelic Drugs AlcoholAlcohol is one of the most widely used drugs in this society. It isaccepted as a part of social life. Its use is widely promoted via sponsorship ofsporting events. Advertising infers that drinking is the path to happiness,success, romance, etc.
There are references to alcohol and its effects fromearliest known writings. Alcohol is consumed in the beverage form and soldlegally in this state to persons over 21. Alcohol is absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the stomachand small intestine. It is distributed by the blood throughout the body,affecting literally every organ it touches in a matter of minutes. Enzymes inthe liver metabolize alcohol at a rate of 10-15 ml (less than one half ounce)per hour.
Hence, only time can sober someone up. Coffee, cold showers, orexercise do not work. The warm glow of disinhibition, “letting go” is a major desired effectof alcohol. People feel more sociable and talkative with small amounts of thedrug.
Alcohol is a relaxant, so many people drink to unwind from the demands oflife. Because alcohol has been around for so long, its effects are well-known. Two key concepts to understand in dealing with alcohol use and abuse areimpairment and tolerance. They are both problems in themselves and signals ofpossible additional difficulties. IMPAIRMENT refers to the deficits in performance, judgment, memory, andmotor skills which occur because of alcohol consumption. Impairment becomesnoticeable at blood levels of 0.
05%, which can occur when as few as two drinksare consumed in an hour by a 160 pound person. The deceptive part aboutimpairment is that, by definition, impaired judgment cannot recognize its ownimpairment. The individual thinks he or she is functioning well, when actuallys/he is not. Later, there is impaired memory of the impaired performance.
TOLERANCE means that a drug loses some of its effect with repeated use,and that higher and higher doses are needed. It is the body’s way of adapting tohaving a foreign substance in the system. People develop a high tolerance to alcohol when they drink a great dealover an extended length of time. “WHILE TOLERANCE MAY SEEM TO SOME TO BE ADESIRABLE STATE, IT SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASES THE RISK OF ALCOHOLISM AND LONG-TERMHEALTH AND SOCIAL PROBLEMS”. For example, a heavy drinker could still be lucidat 0.
25%, whereas the average person would barely be able to function. Even so,the heavy drinker would be extremely dangerous on the highway. Thirteen percent of male and five percent of female college studentsnationwide are alcoholic. Persons are considered alcoholic if they exhibit threeor more of the following symptoms for more than one month, or if the symptomsget repeated over a longer period of time:1.
Alcohol is consumed in greater quantities or for longer periods oftime than the person intended; 2. The individual has a persistent desire tocontrol or eliminate drinking, or has made one or more unsuccessful efforts todo this (for example, there are resolutions to “cut down,” but these effortsdisappear after a period of time); 3. Considerable time is spent in obtaining,using, or recovering from alcohol and its effects; 4. Intoxication or itsaftereffects (e.
g. , hangovers) frequently occur at times when the person isexpected to fulfill work, family or school obligations; or there is physicallyhazardous use (e. g. , while driving); 5.
The individual gives up or reduces social,recreational or job-related activities because of alcohol use; 6. Drinkingcontinues despite the knowledge that alcohol causes the person to have social,psychological or medical problems; 7. Significantly increased tolerance hasdeveloped; 8. Withdrawal symptoms occur when initially attempting abstinence(e.
g. , flu-like symptoms, headaches, gastrointestinal distress, sweatiness, moodswings, irritability, anxiety); 9. Alcohol or other drugs are used to ward offthe withdrawal. Other long-term medical problems include high blood pressure, increasedrisk of heart attack, pancreatitis, various cancers, cirrhosis of the liver. Chronic heavy drinking in men is associated with testicular atrophy and breastenlargement.
In women, as little as one drink a day greatly increases the riskof breast cancer. Drinking during pregnancy can cause birth defects and mentalretardation. Alcohol is also fattening. One glass of wine daily added to the diet canresult in a weight gain of ten pounds a year.
Cocaine and CrackCocaine is an alkaloid extracted from the leaves of the coca plant. Itis a stimulant and euphoric substance that has powerful effects on the humanbrain. The practice of sniffing (“snorting”) cocaine actually dates back to thebeginning of this century as knowledge spread about cocaine’s ability to inducefeelings of well-being and increased energy. At that time, cocaine was alsoavailable in over-the-counter tonics and potions. Crack is cocaine that has been processed so that it can be smoked.
It isgenerally sold in small quantities and distributed in small glass vials or smallplastic bags. When crack is smoked, it produces an immediate, short-lived effect. Intravenous use (“shooting up”) also results in rapid onset of effects, whilethe effects of sniffing are delayed several minutes. The onset of the high, or rush, from cocaine and crack is reported byusers to be intense and pleasurable. Some users have called the rush “an orgasmof the brain.
” The rush lasts only a few seconds, followed by a 20 minute high. Individuals report an increased sense of well-being and self-confidence, alongwith a decrease in fatigue and hunger. Some people report that they experiencecocaine as an “aphrodisiac”. There is a social aspect to cocaine use as well, ascocaine is frequently obtained from “friends” and consumed in small get-togethers. Cocaine (and in particular “crack”) is one of the most addictive drugsknown to humankind. Laboratory studies have shown that animals, when offered theoption to self-administer cocaine, will continue to administer the drug untilthey die, ignoring their needs for food and water.
It is reported that as many as one out of every three crack users becomeaddicted to cocaine. There is no scientific way to predict who will becomeaddicted. However, there has been a good deal of news media attention given tostories of successful people who have lost themselves, their jobs, fortunes, andfamilies because of their involvement with cocaine. The problems cocaine causesin people’s lives are so severe and the pull to use the drug again is so strongthat it generally takes people two years of rehabilitation to recover from acocaine addiction, once they seek treatment. Crack is a very rapidly addicting form of cocaine, with addiction oftenbecoming apparent within a matter of weeks. Some users have reported becomingaddicted after their first experience with this form of cocaine.
Thus crack isan especially dangerous form of the drug. Cocaine can be quite toxic to the cardiovascular system and cause death. Death occurs from one of two primary effects. Cocaine can cause a spasm of thecoronary arteries, which supply the heart with blood, and cocaine can alsodisrupt the rhythm of the heart by interfering with its electrical conduction. There is no way to tell who is sensitive to these effects.
As in the cases ofthese athletes, being in excellent physical shape is no protection. Furthermore,what is a non-lethal dose for one person may be lethal for another, and thismakes the question of dosage a risky one for the novice users. In high dose orprolonged use (binges) users often exhibit extreme irritability (which mayexplode to violence), and paranoia. While the high from cocaine is generally well understood by the generalpublic, less well-known is the withdrawal or “crash”: fatigue, prolonged sleepand severe depression.
These symptoms escalate as the frequency of use or thedose increases, leading many people to use the drug again soon. This sets up theaddictive cycle, and people have been known to go on “cocaine binges” to copewith such crashes. During a binge, an individual may use up hundreds and eventhousands of dollars’ worth of cocaine, and put them selfs in significant risk. For those injecting cocaine, this could mean 10 or more injections in a night,with increased risk for AIDS if sterile needles are not used. To complicatematters medically, users often consume large quantities of alcohol to handletheir crashes.
Other “Speed” DrugsTwo other stimulants are known to be abused locally. They have manysimilarities to the cocaine drugs, but have some important differences. Methamphetamine (meth, crank, crystal) has the stimulant properties of cocaine,but lasts from four to six hours. It can be taken orally or injected.
Recently adrug called “ice” known in Japan and other countries has come to Oregon. Ice isa smokable form of methamphetamine, just as crack is a smokable form of cocaine. The effects of ice last for a long time, 14 hours or more, with a similarpotential for addiction, irritability and paranoia as cocaine. The other stimulant of concern is a prescription drug called Ritalin(Methly Phenidate). It is prescribed by physicians for hyperactive children, butis often diverted by drug abusing parents. This drug is a powerful stimulant.
When abused, the tablets are crushed and mixed with water, then injected. Theproblem associated with Ritalin abuse, besides the typical stimulant problems,has to do with the chemicals used to make the tablet. Talc (like talcum power)is used to hold the pill together. Talc does not dissolve in the body orbloodstream, and can clog veins, causing embolisms and strokes. LSDLSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is an extremely powerful hallucinogen–100 times as potent as psilocybin and 4000 times as potent as mescaline. LSD or”acid” saw its heyday in the late 1960s and early 1970s but is still used today.
It is usually taken orally, in tablets, capsules or on blotter paper. The attraction. The effects of LSD begin within an hour of ingestion andlast from 2 to 12 hours. The effects taper off gradually.
Users provide avariety of reasons for taking the drug, including a desire to experiencesomething profoundly beautiful, a wish to achieve a transcendent state, enhancetheir creativity or take a vacation without going anywhere. Sights and sounds may be merged and intensified, and the sense of timemay be altered. Visual hallucinations often occur and can be novel andfascinating . Because LSD diminishes an individual’s capacity to differentiatethe boundaries of one object from another, and oneself from the environment,some users report a pleasant feeling of oneness with the world. The description above is one side of the coin, the so-called “goodtrip.
” The other side of the coin is the “bad trip,” in which hallucinations,loss of boundaries, and perceptual changes are experienced as unpleasant andscary . This can cause paranoid feelings, extreme anxiety and/or panic, and insome cases a psychotic reaction, triggering a process which, in some, is notalways reversible. There is no way to predict which individuals will have goodor bad trips. Even expe rienced users can have an unanticipated bad trip, someeven requiring psychiatric hospitalization. Another problem with LSD is the occasional occurrence of flashbacks,strong evoked memories of the LSD experience. Flashbacks often cause fear in theuser and are especially dangerous if the individual is driving a car oroperating machinery.
Short-term effects on the body can include increased blood pressure,rapid heartbeat, muscular weakness, trembling, nausea, chills, hyperventilation,and impairment of motor coordination. Another drug, PCP (Angel Dust) is sometimes marketed as LSD. It ischeaper and easier to make, and it is potentially lethal. EcstasyLike cocaine, Ecstasy (3,4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine) is not a newdrug.
It was synthesized in 1914 by a pharmaceutical company for use as anappetite suppressant, but was never marketed. It has been “rediscovered” inrecent years and goes by the name of MDMA, ADAM, XTC, X, “the love drug,” andthe “hug drug. ” It is chemically similar to but less potent than MDA. The drug is taken orally and produces a high which lasts two to fourhours.
After the initial onset of symptoms, which can be seriously unpleasant,some users report a period of relaxation and emotional openness, where problemsseem to disappear and the user feels receptive to those around him. He or shemay feel self-assured, friendly, and sociable. Such feelings are, of course,obtainable without drugs, but Ecstasy seems to provide a shortcut for some whomay have problems in these areas. Users report that the drug has a “mind-expanding” effect without the extreme reactions found in some of thehallucinogens, such as LSD. One of the problems with Ecstasy is the initial onset of symptoms, whichusually begins with a jittery feeling accompanied by teeth-gnashing, sweating,blurred vision, and an increase in pulse rate and blood pressure. These lattertwo symptoms have been implicated in seizures and heartbeat irregularities, andthe drug effect on certain brain centers has led to psychotic reactions in someindividuals (hallucinations, paranoid delusions, misinterpretation of reality).
There is no way to predict in advance who will be affected in this way. Becausethis drug appears to have milder effects than some of the other drugs discussed,some users double or triple their dose, creating serious medical problems. Repeated use of the drug produces tolerance (that is, the drug becomesineffective), and it can produce a crash. A recent study found that one of the by-products created when Ecstasy ismetabolized is a toxic substance harmful to nerve endings. This seems to causeParkinson’s disease-like symptoms in persons as young as 30 years of age.
Thesesymptoms do not appear immediately, but may occur after a period of time. Theyare apparently non-reversible. MushroomsThere are a number of plant materials which have LSD-like effects andwhich come under the heading of mushrooms or “shrooms” as they are often called. These include the psilocybe mexicana and several other species which have theactive ingredient psilocybin. Mushrooms are generally dried and then eaten.
Mescaline originally came form the “buttons” which grow on the top of peyotecactus. Several varieties of psilocybin mushrooms grow and are illegallymarketed in the Northwest. The initial effects of psilocybin are experienced in 30 minutes and thehigh generally lasts several hours. Small doses can reportedly produce feelingsof physical and mental relaxation and pleasant changes in mood and perception.
Larger doses can produce marked changes in perception, with the userexperiencing effects similar to those found with LSD. With mescaline, the effects appear slowly and last from 10-18 hours. Commonly reported effects include euphoria, heightened sensory perception,visual hallucinations, alterations in body image, and some muscular relaxation. With regard to perceptual processes, the unpleasant effects of thesedrugs are similar to those found with LSD. In addition, psilocybin can causedizziness, light-headedness, abdominal discomfort, numbness in the mouth, nausea,vomiting, shivering, facial flushing, sweating, and fatigue.
With mescaline,nausea and vomiting frequently occur, and high doses can produce low bloodpressure, cardiac depression, slowed respiration, and headache. These sideeffects have the potential to be medically serious. Both psilocybin and mescaline can be manufactured in the laboratory. MarijuanaMarijuana consists of the dried leaves and flowering tops of the hempplant (cannabis sativa).
The plant’s principal psychoactive ingredient is delta-9 THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). Hashish or “hash” is the dried resin from the topsand leaves of the female plant. It contains a higher concentration of the THCand is therefore more potent. Both marijuana and hash are usually smoked. When smoked, the effects of marijuana produces a feeling of euphoriawhich gives rise to a tendency to talk and laugh more than usual. Color, sound,and taste, touch and/or smell may be enhanced and experienced as pleasant andfascinating.
Muscular relaxation may occur, as well as a sense of well-being andrelief from tension. Cannabis impairs the ability to perform complex motor tasks such asdriving a car. It also impairs short-term memory and logical thinking. At veryhigh doses, effects can be similar to those of hallucinogens, and the user canexperience confusion, restlessness, hallucination, paranoia, and anxiety orpanic. These problems have become more noted in recent years, as the strains ofmarijuana now available are many times more potent than the marijuana of theearly 1970s.
Heavy use appears to interfere with brain cell functioning, producingproblems with sequencing ability, time sense, depth perception, memory storage,and recall. Chronic heavy users sometime demonstrate apathy, loss of energy,confusion, and memory problems. Long-term use of THC is also associated with lower sperm counts in malesand alterations in sperm shape and mobility. In women, irregularities inmenstruation and ovulation occur. Pregnant women who are heavy marijuana smokershave higher levels of miscarriages, still-births and genetic disorders. Marijuana smoke contains more cancer-causing agents than tobacco smoke.
Laboratory studies have shown pre-cancerous cellular changes in the lung tissueof long term users. Warning SignalsSigns That The Chemical Has Taken ControlThe following symptoms and behaviors, when related to chemical use(including alcohol, of course), indicate that a person has seriouslyoverindulged. Beyond this, these symptoms could indicate a more serious problemor addiction: MEDICALAccidents or injuries Nausea and vomiting Mysterious bruises Gastritis Blackouts (cannot remember something while drinking) Passing out(unconsciousness) Emergency room visitsACADEMIC/EMPLOYMENTAcademic failure/poor work performance Missing classes/absenteeism from work Not living up to one’s potential Difficulties with deadlines or procrastination SEXUALImpotence Sexual assault Inability to resist unwanted sexual advance Engaging in sexual activities that are contrary to valuesSOCIAL/PSYCHOLOGICALLoss of self-respect Mood swings Panic and unexplained fears Depression Property damage Paranoia Fights and arguments Social isolation and withdrawalProblems with legal or college authorities Causing emotional pain to friendsor loved onesDRINKING/USING BEHAVIORSneaking drinks or drugs or using alone Hiding bottles/drugs Consuming morethan intended Inability to predict how much one will consume Using again rightafter sobering up Using to relieve anxiety, insomnia, pain or depression Usingto feel more confident in social situations Spending substantial amounts ofmoney on alcohol and drugs Preoccupation with next high Centering one’srecreational activities around chemicals Family members or friends expressingconcern about one’s drinking or other drug use Feeling annoyed or angry whenone’s chemical use is discussed Inability to carry out an intention to “cutdown”State LawsThe following chart describes the penalties for POSSESSION of key drugs(the schedules are more inclusive) according to the Federal Drug Schedules:Max. Prison Time Max . Fine SCHEDULE #ClassHeroin, LSD, other hallucinogens marijuana, others 10 years$100,000 SCHEDULE II Class C Felony Methadone, morphine, amphetamines cocaine,PCP5 years $100,000 SCHEDULE II Class A MisdemeanorsNon-amphetamine stimulants,1 year$2,500SCHEDULE IV Class CMisdemeanors some depressants1 Valium-type tranquilizers, some less potentdepressants 30 days $500SCHEDULE VViolation Dilutemixtures, compounds with small amounts of controlled drugsNone $1,000Delivery of less than five grams or possession or less than one ounce ofmarijuana is a violation. established mandatory evaluation, education andtreatment services for those under 18 years old.
If services are successfullycompleted, the charge will be dropped. Alcohol is an illegal drug for those under 21 years of age. For a driverunder 18 ANY detectable amount of alcohol (above . 00 BAC) is grounds for losingthe license. That pretty much sums it up for psychodelic drugs.
I hope this proved toyou that if you use a psychodelic drug that you should stop, unless it is alcholbecause it is not as bad as LSD, pcp, or anything you have to inject or snort.So I sign out with I hope you learned something, I mean you had to you could’enthave know all of this information.BiblyographyName Year TypeMicrosoft Encarta96’EncyclopediaDartmouth collage95’Brochure White House97’InternetSocial Issues