Are you aware of all the negative effects that using drugs and alcohol has on your body, mind, and life? Here is a breakdown of those negative effects:

Generic Negative Physical Effects (these come with many kinds of drug or alcohol abuse)

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Cold sweats
  • Convulsions
  • Dependence
  • Dilated pupils
  • Dry mouth
  • Exhaustion
  • Gastrointestinal disease
  • Impaired memory
  • Loss of grey matter in the brain, shrinking brain size
  • Memory loss
  • Organ failure
  • Overdose
  • Premature aging
  • Seizures
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Death

Generic Mental/Emotional/Social Effects (these come with any kind of drug or alcohol abuse)

  • Agitation
  • Altered sleep patterns, sleep disturbance that is permanent
  • Anxiety
  • Attention impairment
  • Committing crimes to pay for drugs
  • Confusion
  • Delusions
  • Depression
  • Drinking or drugging heavily to calm down or sleep after using stimulants
  • Dysphoria
  • Hyperactivity, restlessness
  • Inflated sense of confidence, importance, and power
  • Isolation
  • Legal issues related to drinking or using drugs, like DUIs or assaults from being under the influence
  • Paranoia
  • Picking and scratching skin
  • Psychosis
  • Schizophrenic-like behavior
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Very talkative or no talking at all, unusual social patterns
  • Violent impulses
  • Wild mood swings


Negative Effects of IV Drug Use

  • Abscesses
  • Cellulitis
  • HIV infection
  • Hepatitis B and C infection
  • Increased risk of overdose


Negative Effects of Smoking Drugs

  • Burns on lips, fingers
  • Lung cancer
  • Lung damage
  • Respiratory illness


Special Negative Effects of Methamphetamine

  • Brain hemorrhage
  • Hallucinations, feeling of bugs crawling on skin
  • “Meth mouth,” rotten brown teeth
  • Rapid deterioration of physical appearance


Special Negative Effects of Heroin

  • Coma
  • Impotence
  • Lethargy
  • Death


Special Negative Effects of Alcohol

  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Blackouts, lost time
  • Cancer-related to alcohol consumption and processing, such as cancer of the esophagus, mouth, throat, colon, and liver
  • Delirium tremens, or “DTs”
  • Poor balance
  • Malnutrition
  • Rapid eye movements
  • Stroke
  • Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome

Special Negative Effects of Cocaine/Crack Use

  • Coughing up black mucous
  • Hallucinations, feeling of bugs crawling on skin
  • Hypersexuality
  • Nosebleeds, nose collapse
  • Parkinson’s disease

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