Taking drugs has both beneficial and detrimental effects.
Drugs - power to change behavior or experience of living. Table 1 gives the major categories of psychoactive drugs and their effects.
No drug can cure mental illness but can offering symptomatic relief.
In using any drug, whether it be for doctor's orders or for sport, the prudent person should recall that these are chemical foreign to the body and should exercise caution in their use. Drugs are the result of wonderful scientific advances but should not be misused or abused.
Our awareness of the world is in continual flux. We fluctuate from wakefulness
to sleep, from arousal to letargy. Some of the more potent external modulators
of awareness are the drugs that act upon the brain. Threse are psychoterapeutic
drugs, psychogenic drugs stimulants, narcotic drugs. Like most advances
in science, drugs are both very benefical and potentially harmful.
Stimulant drugs - These drugs act to excite the brain, alleviate fatigue. The mild forms include caffeine, which is in coffee, tea and coke. Nocotine, which is in tobacco.They are rather safe and have no side effects for most people. Amphetamines are powerful agents used to alleviate fatigue, decrease appetite, reduce the need for sllep and increase awareness. They produce euphoria, often followed by depression. Continued overuse of amphetamines results in a condition similar to psychosis (a lost of contact with reality). Their medical uses are in combatting abnormal drwsiness and serving as an aid to weight loss.
Alcohol - In small amounts, it appears to produce a mild euphoria and stimulate appetite and sex. Although it has few side effects, it is actually a depressant drug. In greater amounts or when taken by chronic alcoholics the situation is altogether different. There are lack of coordination, brain and liver damage, distortions of space and time, impaired perception. It is considered a dangerous and potentially addicting drug when consumed in large amounts.
Narcotic drugs -These drugs are powerful agents for producing a notable sense of well-being and relieving pain. These drugs, for example, morphine and heroine, are the most addictive agents known to man.
Psychogenic drugs - The drugs criate psychosis-like states. Some of
them include marijuana, LSD, psilosibin, mescaline. Marijuana produces
euphoria, psychosis like states and hallucinations (visions of objects
that are not present).
LSD are the most dangerous and powerful drug in the group of psychogenic drugs. They have distorting effects on sensory experience. The resulting behavior can be bizarre such as strange hallucinations.
Psychoterapeutic drugs - These drugs have three groups: antianxiety
or tranquilizer, the antidepressant, and the antipsychotics.
Antianxiety drugs are prescibed when it is desirable to reduce anxiety and produce some euphoria. Produce an effect similar to mild doses of alcohol but without the sleep-producing effects.
|Stimulant||Increase awareness, decrease appetite, produce anxiety; moderately addictive||caffeine, nicotine, amphetamines|
|Alcohol||Produce euphoria, impair perceptions, may damage brain and liver, potentially addictive||whiskey|
|Narcotic||Promote feelings of well-being, relieve pain, addictive||Morphine, heroine|
|Psychogenic||Produce distortions of time and space, hallucinations, psychosis-like states.||Marijuana, LSD, mescaline, psilosibin|