Sign in
Download Opera News App



Health Living


Disease prevention and treatment

A list of the commonly abused drugs and their potential effects

What Are the Most Commonly Abused Drugs?

They include: Marijuana, alcohol, cocaine, meth, heroin


This mild hallucinogen, derived from the Cannabis sativa plant, is the most commonly abused illegal drug in the United States, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. When used, usually through smoking, marijuana acts as a central nervous system stimulant. “It speeds up heart rate and raises blood pressure,” Dr. Collins says. “It can stimulate the nervous system enough that some people become paranoid while taking it.


A powerful, addictive stimulant, cocaine gives users a euphoric feeling when ingested, which, depending on the person, may or may not actually feel good. “Some people experience that rush as very pleasurable, but others don’t like it.

Cocaine is usually snorted as a powder, but it can also be modified into rock form — so-called crack — and smoked.


These drugs, which include both street drugs like heroin and pharmaceutical painkillers like morphine and codeine, act on the body’s central nervous system by stimulating the brain’s “reward center,” which controls pleasurable feelings. Opiates mimic the effects of healthy feel-good activities, like having sex or eating. However, in high doses, opiates can cause some of the brain’s critical functions, like breathing, to slow down or stop working.


Usually a white powder that is smoked, snorted, or injected, this powerful stimulant is highly addictive. Like cocaine, methamphetamine (often known simply as "meth") can speed up the heart, as well as cause hyperthermia, an extremely high body temperature. When used over a long period of time, methamphetamine can cause anxiety, insomnia, and even psychotic symptoms, like hallucinations. Severe dental problems can also occur; the drug is acidic and can wear down teeth over time. Users often grind their teeth as well, further damaging them.


Moderate consumption of alcohol is safe for most people, but heavier use can lead to problems. Over the long term, having more than one alcoholic drink per day for women or anyone over 65 or two drinks per day for men under 65 can increase a person's risk of developing medical conditions like pancreatitis and liver and heart disease.

Content created and supplied by: Ibrahim (via Opera News )

Cannabis National Institute on Drug Abuse United States


Load app to read more comments