Substance Abuse: People abuse substances such as drugs, alcohol, and tobacco for varied and complicated reasons, but it is clear that our society pays a significant cost. Symptoms and signs of substance abuse include forgetfulness, frequent hangovers, having blackouts, and getting into trouble with the law. Treatment typically involves counseling and prescription medications to control withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings.
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AddictionAddiction is possible whenever ingesting a substance causes the basic pleasure and reward circuits in the brain to activate. Addiction is an illness that requires treatment, because people with addictions cannot stop on their own. Symptoms of addiction include a person's inability to stop using the substance, devoting a lot of time and effort toward obtaining, using, and recovering from the substance's effects, discontinuing important social, employment, and recreational activities due to preoccupation with the substance, developing tolerance for the substance, and developing withdrawal symptoms.
Barbiturate AbuseBarbiturates are a group of drugs in the class of drugs known as sedative-hypnotics, which generally describes their sleep-inducing and anxiety-decreasing effects.
Cocaine AbuseCocaine is one of the most commonly abused drugs in the U.S. Symptoms of cocaine abuse include dilated pupils, recurrent nosebleeds, and hallucinations. Medical professionals diagnose cocaine abuse by looking for signs and symptoms such as cocaine-induced headaches and cocaine-induced seizures; psychiatric complications like anxiety, hallucinations, and psychoses; nasal and throat complications like nosebleed and perforated nasal septum; pulmonary conditions like asthma and pneumonia; cardiovascular complications; and infectious complications.
Drug Dependence & AbuseDrug dependence is the physical need for a certain substance. Drug abuse and dependence comprise a huge public health problem with no easy treatment available.
Drug OverdoseOverdoses of drugs or chemicals can be either accidental or intentional. Drug overdoses occur when a person takes more than the medically recommended dose. Overdose is often a cause of death, coma, or other injury with heroin and other drugs commonly abused.
Narcotic AbuseNarcotic abuse is when people use narcotics for reasons apart from the narcotic's pain-relief purpose. Signs and symptoms of narcotic abuse include euphoria, shallow breathing, small pupils, nausea, vomiting, slurred speech, confusion, and needle marks on the skin. Treatment involves addressing the long-term psychological dependence associated with narcotic abuse and administering medications such as buprenorphine, clonidine, and naltrexone to alleviate withdrawal symptoms.
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