Top Most Commonly Abused Substances Among University Students

It's important to be aware of the most commonly abused substances among university students to help aim to prevent addiction. Here's how.

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October 8, 2019
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It’s no secret that young adults experiment with different types of drugs during their college days. If you are addicted to smoking marijuana, drinking alcohol or snorting cocaine, be wary of the risks involved when using these substances since they can sometimes lead to death. Knowing these risks will help you make the right decisions that will positively improve your health. Understanding the negative effects of these substances on your body and the deadly threat of being addicted to them is just the first step in taking care of yourself. Experts at Clarity Way Addiction Treatment Center say that the physical and emotional effects differ depending on the individual and the substance being abused.

To get things started on your way to a clean life, here are the most common substances being abused by college students and why you should avoid them:

Alcohol

Countless college students are encouraged to drink at campus parties by friends and classmates. However, most of them don’t just drink. They binge drink, which means they drink three to six alcoholic beverages every hour. This brings their blood alcohol content to alarmingly high levels. Recently, a study was released on how deadly binge drinking is at any level. Alcohol is one of the most common causes of death in the world and an expensive addiction, so we must act urgently in order to prevent more deaths.

Marijuana

This substance is a mind hallucinogen which is derived from a plant called Cannabis sativa and is the most commonly abused drug in the world. When marijuana is used, often by smoking, it acts as a stimulant for the central nervous system. Marijuana speeds up a person’s heart rate and boosts blood pressure which makes the user paranoid and dulls their memory. In addition to this, marijuana makes your brain slower and unable to focus on things.

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Death from marijuana overuse is rare, but similar to smoking cigarettes, exaggerated use of the substance can lead to heart problems. Just like cigarette smokers, marijuana users are also prone to persistent coughing and recurring lung diseases. The smoke coming from the plant also contains carcinogens which may be linked to the formation of cancer cells in the lungs.

Stimulants

Prescription medicines including Adderall and Ritalin are rapidly becoming an addiction inside school grounds. This is because of their effect on boosting concentration and helping students focus on studying. For students who usually stay up at night rushing to finish assignments, these benefits are all worth the risk. According to a study done in 2017, almost 70% of college students who are using prescription medication stimulants for nonmedical intake have received them from friends.

Methamphetamine

This illegal substance is a potent and intensely addictive illegal drug. If offers a high which lasts almost 50 times longer than cocaine. Similar to cocaine, this drug suppresses the user’s appetite which leads to abnormal weight loss and malnourishment. In addition, methamphetamine also causes physical changes to the body such as tooth loss, hair loss and skin problems. In addition, studies have shown that methamphetamine causes behavioral problems such as acting violently, severe depression, psychosis and paranoia. The hazardous effects of this drug do not end there since it also causes permanent damage to internal organs such as the liver and kidneys. In turn, it can cause the body to go into seizures which can lead to death.

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Cocaine

A potent and highly addictive stimulant, cocaine gives a euphoric feeling when consumed, which, depending on the user, may or may not feel good. Some people say that the sudden rush is satisfying but others don’t actually like it. This feeling usually lasts anywhere between 35 to 40 minutes. Cocaine is usually taken as a powder but it can also be turned into a rock and smoked. The effect of this substance constricts blood vessels and speeds up heart rate. These effects on the cardiovascular system are the main reasons for deaths related to cocaine. Sudden death is not rare when using this drug since even a small dose can kill you.

Sedatives

Another substance commonly abused by college students are sedatives such as Xanax and Valium. These are only prescribed to people who are suffering from severe panic attacks and anxiety. These drugs are made to help people relax and get better sleep. However, when mixed with alcohol, these drugs will slow down your breathing pattern and can even result in death.

Opioids

The abuse of prescription drugs is arguably the most hazardous type of substance abuse existing today. There is an opioid epidemic happening all over the world, making it a commonly abused drug among students. Even though opioids are legal to use under a doctor’s supervision, abusing them can often be deadly.

Conclusion

It has been proven over the years that drug abuse among college students is common. A careless decision like this can often result in a difficult fight for sobriety. Luckily, there are treatment centers and rehabilitation facilities available to those in need of a better chance at life.