Effects of Substance Abuse

What are the physical & mental effects of Drug & Alcohol misuse?

What are the side effects of drug and alcohol abuse?

Abusing alcohol or drug is in most cases not a harmless practice. The emotional stability of the individual involved is an obvious side effect to the individual abusing the substances, but what is not considered is the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Side Effects and how the individual’s substance abuse affects their loved ones wellbeing with worry and stress.

But in this article let’s look at the health problems substance abuse may cause.

Drug and Alcohol Abuse Side Effects

According to The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, chronic heavy drinking, during adolescence and the young adult years, can dramatically compromise bone quality and may increase the risk of osteoporosis.

The effects of heavy alcohol use on bones cannot be reversed, even if alcohol consumption is stopped. Drinking is also closely related to liver damage and disease, two irreversible medical conditions.

Alcohol consumption during pregnancy has been shown to greatly increase the risk of birth defects in the unborn child.

Babies born with a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) experience a range of symptoms that may include the following:

Premature birth Hyperactivity
Undeveloped head or body size Delayed speech
Abnormal facial features Poor judgment skills
Learning disabilities Vision or hearing problems
Heart, kidney or bone problems

These effects can be permanent and lifelong. This greatly impacts upon the unborn child’s quality of life and their ability to develop and learn.

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The Effects of Prescription Drug Abuse

Misusing prescription drugs increases the chance of overdose or harmful drug interactions. These can be fatal or can leave users with permanent organ or cognitive damage.

Prescription stimulants like Adderall and Ritalin can permanently damage blood vessels, creating high blood pressure and increasing the risk of heart attack and stroke.

The Effects of Recreational Drug Abuse


Recreational drugs which are often mistaken as physically harmless can have serious and permanent side effects. Marijuana has an immediate effect on memory, an effect that is typically short-lived although not without the possibility for academic, personal or professional consequences. Long-term marijuana use has been proved to lead to serious and permanent cognitive damage, depression & paranoia. There is also strong evidence that Marijuana currently a class C drug can lead to the individual take more serious drugs such as heroin or cocaine.

LSD & hallucinogens

LSD abuse can lead to permanent issues with anxiety and paranoia. For some people this may lead to schizophrenia or mental disorders. LSD and other hallucinogen use may lead to the development of hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD).

HPPD may involve flashbacks, false perceptions or the re-occurrence of other hallucinogen-related perceptual changes long after LSD drug use has ceased.


Cocaine misuse is widespread in modern society, but many people are unaware of the serious ramifications on their health. Cocaine misuse can cause anxiety and paranoia while taking the drug. It raises the blood pressure, which if you have an existing heart condition can cause heart attacks. It also can lead to depression after use and loss of appetite. Snorting cocaine long-term can erode away the septum causing facial disfiguration.

Read: How long does Cocaine in your system?

Ending the Effects of Substance Abuse

f you or you believe a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, get help before it is too late. One of the first steps in getting help is being able to understand that you have a problem. Drug addiction in most cases creeps upon the person taking drugs and they often do not realize they have a problem before they are addicted.

Many family members may have a suspicion that a loved one is taking drugs but do not know for sure which drugs are being abused. One way to know for sure is to submit the loved one to a peace of mind drugs test. This is fully confidential and the test samples are taken at home and sent to our state of the art laboratory for analysis.

The results of this test can help you with the correct treatment for your loved one.

Drug abuse and addiction have long-term and far-reaching effects, and the only way to end the disease of addiction is to get professional treatment.

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