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  LiveWire / Teen Forums / Alcohol & Substance Support / Viewing Topic

Alcohol & Substance Support FAQ
Replies: 10Last Post Dec. 18, 2008 10:01pm by greatescape
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In an effort to improve the amount of support available in this forum, I'm putting this together.  This should help to consolidate all of the information floating around.

    In this sticky:

  • What is a drug? Here
  • Classes of drugs Here
  • What is addiction? Here
  • Could I be addicted?  Here
  • Resources for dealing with addiction Here
  • Dealing with addiction in the family Here
  • Facts on Drug Dosages and Overdose  Here
  • What are hard and soft drugs, and how do they relate to addiction? Here
  • Legality Here
  • Other links/sources Here

Message me for additions or corrections

Post edited at 3:02 pm on May 27, 2009 by greatescape

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What is a drug?

Put simply, a drug is any substance that is introduced into an organism that has the ability to alter normal functioning.   Drugs are often categorized as either pharmaceutical or recreational.

Pharmaceutical: Drugs that are used for medicinal purposes.  Uses include the "treatment, cure, prevention, or diagnosis of disease or used to otherwise enhance physical or mental well-being." They may be used for a short period of time, or to treat a chronic injury or illness.  

Recreational:  Drugs that are used for their effects on perception, consciousness, personality, and behavior.  The focus of recreational drug use is to alter consciousness and perception, rather than treat a condition.  Drugs that are deemed to have only recreational uses are often illegal.

**NOTE:  Many (if not most) drugs can fall under both categories.  For example, opiates (such as morphine) are used frequently by doctors as pain killers, however it can also be used to get high. Conversely, marijuana which has long been considered a recreational drug is now being used (in some places) for it's ability to help alleviate side effects of medical conditions such as AIDS and cancer.

Post edited at 7:21 pm on July 16, 2014 by greatescape

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7:46 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 | Joined: July 2007 | Days Active: 1,606
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Classes of Drugs

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) regulates five classes of drugs

Full Drugs of Abuse chart

Narcotics: A narcotic is a type of drug that is used to alleviate pain, help to suppress cough, reduce anxiety or tension. True narcotics, or opioids, are made from opium, which is extracted from the poppy.

There are two types of narcotics, opiates and synthetics. Some examples are:


  • Heroin
  • Morphine
  • Codeine
  • Oxycodone
  • Vicodin
  • Fentanyl
  • Methadone

Side effects:


  •  Euphoria
  • Reduction of physical pain
  • Improved mood
  • Sedation
  • Respiratory depression
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea
  • Constipation
  • Itchiness
  • Tolerance/Dependence/Physical dependence

Depressants: Substances that depress the activity of the central nervous system. Depressants are often referred to as "downers" because of their sedative, hypnotic and tranquilizing effects. Legal depressants are often prescribed to induce sleep, relieve stress, and subdue anxiety.

Some examples of depressants are:


  • Barbiturates (Types of barbiturates)
  • Tranquilizers(Xanax, Ativan, Valium, Librium, Haldol, Navane, Thorazine, Mellaril, flunitrazepam, etc)
  • Alcohol
  • Quaaludes (Glutethimide and Methaqualone)

Side effects:


  • Relaxation
  • Increased mood
  • Loss of inhibition
  • slowed pulse and breathing
  • slurred speech
  • drowsiness
  • lowered blood pressure
  • poor concentration
  • fatigue and confusion
  • impaired coordination, memory and judgment.

Stimulants: Stimulants are substances that stimulate the activity of the central nervous system. Stimulants are often referred to as "uppers" because they increase or speed up mental and physical processes in the body. Legal stimulants are often prescribed to increase alertness and physical activity.

Types of stimulants:


  •  Caffeine
  • Nicotine
  • Many weight loss pills (ephedra, etc)
  • Legal Amphetamines (Adderall, Desoxyn, Dexadrine)
  • Methamphetamine
  • Crack
  • Cocaine
  • Ecstasy (MDMA)

Side effects:


  • Increased blood pressure and heart rate
  • Euphoria
  • Increased energy/wakefulness
  • Increased mood
  • Restlessness
  • Sweating
  • Decreased appetite
  • Possibility for physical dependence

Hallucinogens: Hallucinogenic substances are characterized by their ability to cause changes in the perception of reality. They often causes visual, auditory, and sensual hallucinations. They may come from plants/fungi or synthetic production.

Types of hallucinogens:


  • PCP
  • LSD
  • DMT
  • Psilocybin
  • Peyote
  • DXM
  • Ketamine
  • Morning Glory
  • Mushrooms
  • Salvia

Side effects:


  • Perspective shifting
  • Increase in sensual and aesthetic appreciation
  • Visual and auditory hallucinations
  • Altered perceptions
  • Mood lift; Euphoria
  • Flashbacks
  • Sleepiness
  • Delirium

Anabolic steroids: Steroid hormones related to the hormone testosterone. They increase protein synthesis within cells, which results in the buildup of cellular tissue (anabolism), especially in muscles. Anabolic steroids also have androgenic and virilizing properties, including the development and maintenance of masculine characteristics

Types of steroids:


  • Boldenone Undecylenate
  • Formebolone
  • Fluoxymesterone
  • Methandrostenolone
  • Methenolone
  • Methyltestosterone
  • Nandrolone Decanoate
  • Nandrolone Phenpropionate
  • Nandrolone Undecanoate
  • Oxandrolone
  • Oxymetholone
  • Parabolan
  • Proviron
  • Stanozolol
  • Testosterone Esters

Side effects:


  • Increased strength
  • Acne
  • Decrease in HDL to LDL ratio
  • Depression
  • Edema due to fluid and electrolytes retention
  • Impotence
  • Increased or decreased libido
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Prostate Enlargement
  • Bladder irritability
  •  Increased frequency of erection
  •  Testicular atrophy
  • Increase in facial hair

Post edited at 9:41 pm on Sep. 19, 2010 by greatescape

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What is addiction?

Drug addiction, put simply, is a physical and/or psychological dependence on any drug that is put into the body.  Often, it leads to interference with daily life and normal functioning.  The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) specifies three stages of addiction:
1. Preoccupation/anticipation (Cravings and preoccupation with drug use)
2. Binge/intoxication (Using more of the drug than necessary)
3. Withdrawal/negative affect (Gaining a  tolerance to the drug, withdrawal symptoms, and decreased motivation for normal functioning)

Forms of Addiction

Physical Addiction: Physical addiction (or dependence) is a reliance on a drug that results in an increased tolerance to the substance, as well as withdrawal symptoms when the drug is not present in the users system.
-Tolerance:  Occurs when an individuals  reaction to a drug decreases so that larger doses are required to achieve the same effect. While it can be both psychological and physical, it is typically considered more of a physical reaction.  The rate at which it develops is variable, depending on the amount and frequency of use, as well as the type of drug.  Tolerance is reversible (it will decrease if drug use is decreased).
-Withdrawal:  Characteristic signs and symptoms that appear when a drug that causes physical dependence is regularly used for a long time and then suddenly discontinued or decreased in dosage.  Common symptoms that are associated with withdrawal include shaking/convulsions, nausea,headaches, aches/pains, hallucinations, depression, anxiety and cravings.

Psychological Addiction: Dependency of the mind, rather than the body.  Psychological withdrawal symptoms include cravings, irritability, insomnia, depression, anorexia, etc.  Unlike physical dependence, tolerance and (physical) withdrawal does not occur.  Because the addiction is to the behavior (and the resulting feelings caused by the behavior), psychological addiction is not just limited to drug use.  Any behavior or substance can be psychologically addicting, including gambling, sex, eating, working or self-harm.

***It if important to note that drugs can be both physically AND psychologically addicting.  One can both get physically hooked to the drug itself, as well as become reliant on the behavior.

***Type of addiction is important when it comes to figuring out treatment.  A person who is Physically dependent, but not psychologically dependent can have their dose slowly dropped until they are no longer dependent. However, if that person is psychologically dependent, they are still at serious risk for relapse into abuse and subsequent physical dependence.


Factors that Contribute to Addiction
Though there is no single cause for addiction, several factors seem to influence one's odds of becoming addicted.  These include:


  • Family history of addiction: Although the correlation between between genetics and environment is not entirely clear, it has been shown that if you have a family history of addiction, you will have a higher risk for addiction yourself.
  • History of mental illness: Drug abuse can worsen mental illness or create new symptoms.  
  • Untreated physical pain: Without medical supervision, pain medications  can rapidly become addictive.
  • Peer pressure: Drug use by peers can often influence one's frequency and amount of drug use.
  • Cultural Impact:  Growing up in a setting where drug use is more prevalent (i.e. living in a home where parents use drugs, as well as in a neighborhood where drug use is common) can increase one's exposure to drugs, increasing the likelihood of drug use/abuse.


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Could I be addicted?

Three PRIMARY questions to ask yourself:
1. Is my drug use negatively impacting my everyday life and overall well-being?
2. Have I tried to stop using, and was/am unable?
3. Am I unhappy with the manner in which I am using drugs, or the amount that I am using?

*Answering "yes" to any of the above is a good indication that you may have a problem with drug addiction*


Other questions to ask:
1. Do you lose time from work due to your drinking or drug use?
2. Is drinking or drug use making your home life unhappy?
3. Do you drink or use drugs because you are shy with other people?
4. Is drinking or using drugs affecting your reputation?
5. Have you ever felt remorse after drinking or drug use?
6. Have you gotten into financial difficulties as a result of your drinking or drug use?
7. Do you turn to lower companions and an inferior environment when drinking or using drugs?
8. Does your drinking or using drugs make you careless of your family's welfare?
9. Has your ambition decreased since drinking or using drugs?
10. Do you crave a drink or drugs at a definite time daily?
11. Do you want a drink or drugs the next morning?
12. Does drinking or drug use cause you to have difficulty in sleeping?
13. Has your efficiency decreased since drinking or using drugs?
14. Is drinking or using drugs jeopardizing your job or business?
15. Do you drink or use drugs to escape from worries or troubles?
16. Do you drink or use drugs alone?
17. Have you ever had a complete loss of memory as a result of your drinking or drug use?
18. Has your physician ever treated you for drinking or drug use?
19. Do you drink or use drugs to build up your self-confidence?
20. Have you ever been in a hospital or institution on account of drinking or drug use?


Physical/Behavioral Symptoms of Addiction
-Abnormal energy levels
-Abnormally slow movements, speech or reaction time, confusion and disorientation  
-Sudden weight loss or weight gain
-Sleeping too often, or not enough
-Physical damage from drug use, including bruising or track marks at injection sites, damage to the nasal cavity from  
-Weakening, muscle loss

Psychological symptoms of Addiction
-Cycles of being unusually talkative, "up" and cheerful, with seemingly boundless energy.
-Increased irritability, agitation and anger
-Unusual calmness, unresponsiveness, detachment
-Apathy and depression
-Paranoia, delusions
-Temporary psychosis, hallucinations
-Lowered threshold for violence

Post edited at 8:42 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 by greatescape

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Resources for Dealing with Addiction

There are countless resources to turn to for help with addiction issues.  They vary in the type of drugs they specialize in, the severity of addiction they treat, and the method in which they treat addiction.  It is best to figure out what works best for you.

Alcohol
Alcoholics Anonymous
Alcoholism Resources
Sober Recovery
Intervention and Treatment Resource
Moderation Management
US Intervention & Referall Hotline: 1-(888)762-3750
US Alcohol Abuse Hotline: 1-(800)356-9996
Alcoholics Anonymous World Services (212) 870-3400
US Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (301) 443-3860
South Africa Alcoholics Anonymous:
Johannesburg: (011) 483-2470
Cape Town: (021) 247-550
Durban: (031) 301-4959
Welkom: (041) 554-019

Narcotics
Narconon
Narconon International
Recovery Resource
Narcotics Anonymous World Services

Nicotine
Smokefree.gov
American Lung Cancer Association Help Guide
Become an Ex
Craving Tips
Helpline: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669)
TTY 1-800-332-8615.

General Drug Programs
National Drug Helpline and Info
Drug Referral Alliance
Drug Free America
Rehab Treatment Programs
National Rehab Programs
SMART Recovery
LifeRing
US: Day One-Pasadena / Altadena (drug abuse) (626) 583-2755
US Institute on Drug Abuse (888) 644-6432
UK Talk to Frank National drugs helpline: 0800 776600
Australia Alcohol and Drug Information Counselling Service: 1-800-422-599
South African National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence:
Johannesburg: (011) 337-8400
Cape Town: (021) 930-6086
Durban: (031) 222-241
Welkom: (041) 551-927

**If you have any other sources not listed, PM them to me so I can include them! :)

Post edited at 10:19 pm on Dec. 19, 2008 by greatescape

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Dealing with addiction in the family

Tips for dealing with a parent with addiction issues
1.  Know that alcohol/drug dependency is not your fault, and you are not responsible for correcting it.
2.  You can take care of yourself by talking with a trusted person and making healthy choices in your own life.
3.  Treatment for alcohol/drug dependency is available and can help a parent with addiction get on the road to recovery.
4.  There are resources for you as well.  You don't have to deal with it on your own.

Resources:
Hopelinks
Ala-Anon/Alateen


Helping a friend with addiction

Worried that a friend might be abusing drugs?  There are a few things you can do to help them out.

1. COMMUNICATION!  The best thing you can do for your friend is to talk to them.  Don't accuse them of anything, yell at them or place blame.  Let them know that you're worried about them, and ask what you can do.
2.  If you think your friend is in serious danger, don't hesitate to talk to someone else who can help.
3.  Be there for them.  Addiction recovery is a process, and it won't be easy for them.
4.  Be understanding.  
5.  Refrain from doing things that may make your friend crave their addiction (i.e. if its smoking they're trying to kick, don't smoke around them)
6.  Find things to do with your friend that do not involve using.  Sometimes the hardest part of overcoming addiction can be finding new things to do with new people that don't involve using.  Show them that there are other things out there.

Resources:
Ala-Anon/Alateen

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Facts on Drug Dosages and Overdose

Common Over-the-Counter Drugs  
Acetaminophen/Paracetamol  
(Tylenol, Panadol) Acetaminophen belongs to a class of drugs called analgesics (pain relievers) and antipyretics (fever reducers). It is also a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAIDs)  
Dosage:  

  • Recommended: The oral dose for adults is 325 to 650 mg every 4 to 6 hours. The maximum daily dose is 4000  milligrams.  
  • Acetaminophen shouldn't be taken for more than 10 days continuously without first seeking advice from a doctor as it can cause stomach ulcers and heart problems  
  • Overdose: Acetaminophen is extremely toxic to adults in single large doses of about 7000 mg (or 150 mg per kilogram of body weight), although as little as 4000 mg when taken throughout the day can also be toxic. Also note that the risk of severe liver damage increases acutely when combined with alcohol.  
 
Overdose Symptoms  
     
  • Liver and kidney damage  
  • Nausea/vomiting/sweating, followed by no other symptoms for 24 hours  
  • As damage sets in between 24-48 hours, liver damage occurs, which can lead to right upper quadrant abdominal pain, jaundice (yellow skin) or icterus (yellow eyes), confusion, coma, and kidney failure  
 

Ibuprofen  
(Advil, Genpril, Ibu-200, Midol, Motrin, Nuprin) Ibuprofen is in a group of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and is used for pain relief and to reduce fevers  
Dosage:  

     
  • Recommended: The maximum amount of ibuprofen for adults is 800 milligrams per dose or 3200 mg per day (4 maximum doses).  
  • Shouldn't be taken for more than 10 days continuously without first seeking advice from a doctor as it can cause stomach ulcers and heart problems  
  • Overdose: Severe toxic effects set in at around 400 mg/kg (or 182 mg/lb).  
 
Overdose Symptoms  
     
  • Blurred vision, ringing in the ears  
  • Diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, stomach pain, vomiting  
  • Little urine production  
  • Difficult or slow breathing  
  • Headache, agitation, confusion, drowsiness, dizziness, seizures  
  • Rashes or sweating  
 

Diphenhydramine hydrochloride  
(Bendryl, Nytol, Unisom, Midol, Theraflu, Sominex, etc) Symptomatic relief of perennial and seasonal allergies, runny nose and sneezing caused by common cold; motion sickness (injection only); nighttime sleep aid, etc.  
Dosage:  

     
  • Recommended: Dosage will vary depending on product. See packaging.  
  • Side note: The drug is sometimes used for recreational purposes, thus dosing may differ based on intent. More information on this can be found here  
  • Overdose: 400 mg will create a severely delusional state, and is considered an "at risk dose". Anything above 500mg is dangerous and potentially fatal.  
 
Overdose Symptoms:  
     
  • Agitation  
  • Blurred vision due to large pupil size  
  • Confusion, delirium, drowsiness, incoherence  
  • Convulsions, movement problems  
  • Diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain  
  • Rapid heart rate  
  • Inability to urinate  
  • Cotton mouth  
  • Flushing of skin  
 

Dextromethorphan  
(Robitussin, Vicks 44, Benylin, Nyquil, etc) Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant. It affects the signals in the brain that trigger cough reflex.  
Dosages:  

     
  • Recommended: Most doses are between 5mg and 25mg. Follow instructions given on packaging.  
  • Side note: The drug is sometimes used for recreational purposes. Additional information can be found  here.  
  • Overdose: Over 1000 mg will likely result in very strong psychological effects, as well as physical impairment. Over 2,500mg begins drastically increasing the risk for permanent damage or death.
 
Overdose Symptoms:  
NOTE: Symptoms may be interpreted differently depending on intent of drug use.  
     
  • Drop in blood pressure, rapid heart rate  
  • Slow, labored, shallow breathing  
  • Blurred vision  
  • Blue tint to skin  
  • Stomach/intestinal spasms, nausea, vomiting, constipation  
  • Drowsiness, dizziness, hallucinations, spasms, coma  
 

Pseudoephedrine  
(Sudafed, Dimetapp, Elixsure, Sudrine) Pseudoephedrine is a decongestant used for temporary relief of nasal congestion caused by hay fever, allergies, the common cold, sinus infections, or other upper respiratory diseases  
Dosage  

     
  • Recommended: 30-60 mg every 4-6 hours, sustained release: 120 mg every 12 hours; maximum: 240 mg/24 hours  
  • Overdose: Dosage required for overdose is extremely high. No exact data is available. Use symptoms of overdose to determine if emergency action should be taken.  
 
Overdose Symptoms  
     
  • Seizures  
  • Nausea, vomiting  
  • Cardiac cardiac arrhythmias, hypertension  
  • Agitation, hallucinations  
 

 
Pharmaceuticals  

I. Narcotic Opiates  
Narcotics are drugs that alleviate physical pain, suppress coughing, alleviate diarrhea, and induce anesthesia. Natural narcotics are derived from the Opium poppy and synthetic narcotics are made to act like Opium.  

1.Codeine  
Dosage:  

     
  • Common doses: Most codeine products contain anywhere from 8mg-60mg of codeine, accompanied by 325mg of acetaminophen. Other products may contain aspirin or caffeine. See above information of toxicology of these drugs.  
  • Recommended: Codeine is available only by prescription in the United States. Take the dose recommended by your  doctor/pharmacist. In other countries, low doses are available over the counter. Follow packaging instructions.  
  • Overdose: Because codeine is a narcotic, the exact dosage for overdose varies from person to person based on body weight and tolerance to the drug. Pay attention to potential codeine AND acetaminophen overdose. 100mg-500mg doses of  codeine have shown to cause early side effects of overdose. Doses between 500-800mg can cause serious and prolonged symptoms of overdose, and doses over 800mg are very dangerous.  
 

2. Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab, etc)  
Dosage:  

     
  • Common doses: Most hydrocodone products come in one of three ratios (of hydrocodone to acetaminophen). Those are 5mg:500mg (Vicodin), 7.5mg:750mg (Vicodin ES) and 10mg:660mg (Vicodin HP).  
  • Follow the instructions of your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Overdose: Due to the nature of the drug, exact dosage for an overdose varies by user's tolerance and body weight. Users with no tolerance should not exceed 40mg in one day, however heavy users have been reported to take 100-200mg per day with little side effects. Because of this, instructions should be followed, and symptoms of overdose should be monitored. REMEMBER that this product also contains acetaminophen. See above for toxicology.  
 
Overdose Symptoms  
*Symptoms for both drugs are very similar, and are listed together.  
     
  • Depressed, slow, shallow breathing  
  • Pupil contraction  
  • Loss of consciousness/altered state of consciousness  
  • Flushed skin  
  • Itchiness  
  • Agitation, confusion  
  • Drowsiness  
 

SSRI's  
(Celexa, Lexapro, Provac, Paxil, Zoloft, etc) Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are a class of antidepressants used in the treatment of depression, anxiety disorders, and some personality disorders.  
Dosage  

     
  • Recommended: SSRI's are available by prescription. Take what is recommended by your doctor or pharmacist  
  • Overdose: SSRI overdose is relatively rare, in comparison to other types of antidepressants. Studies show that a dose of over 75x the normal dose is likely to lead to potentially long-term damage or fatality.  
 
Overdose Symptoms  
*See Serotonin Syndrome  

Psychostimulants  
(Aderrall, Ritalin, etc) The drug is used primarily to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and narcolepsy, which are its only two approved indications  
Dosage:  

     
  • Recommended: Available by prescription only. Do not exceed dose recommended by doctor or pharmacist. Average dose ranges from 20-60mg daily.  
  • Overdose: Do not exceed 100mg in one day.
 
Overdose Symptoms:  
     
  • Overstimulation of the nervous system resulting in twitching, agitation, tremors, shaking, convulsions and an increased heart rate.  
  • Cotton mouth  
  • Nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting  
  • Confusion, delirium, hallucinations  
  • Sweating, change in body temperature  
 

-----------------------------------------------  
End notes:  
*This does not advocate the misuse or abuse of any of the above drugs.

If you believe you are experiencing an overdose:  
Call 911, or an emergency number immediately.  

National Poison Control Hotlines  
United States: 1-800-222-1222  
United Kingdom: 0870 600 6266  
Ireland: 353 1 8379966  

Global Poison Control Hotlines from the World Health Organization  

Sticky on Course of Action for Suspected Overdose

Post edited at 8:14 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 by greatescape

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What are "hard" and "soft" drugs?

The purpose of categorizing drugs as either "hard" or "soft" is to describe their potential for addiction, risk for poisoning/overdose, and effect on the health of the user.  

Common Categorizations:

Hard Drugs: Drugs in this group are generally described as being physically addictive, easier to overdose on, and/or posing serious health and social risks, including death.

Soft Drugs:Drug has little to no potential for physical addiction, and a toxic overdose on the substance requires, in some cases, hundreds of times a normal dose. However, it is possible for one to take more than one is psychologically capable of handling, which can lead to negative experiences.

"In-between" Drugs: Some drugs such as MDMA, Ketamine , and caffeine, have propeties that would classify them as both a hard and soft drug.  Alcohol is sometimes not included as a hard drug because of it's widespread use in society.

Post edited at 8:27 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 by greatescape

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Legality


United States

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is the federal U.S. drug policy under which the manufacture, importation, possession, use and distribution of certain substances is regulated. The legislation created five Schedules (classifications), with varying qualifications for a substance to be included in each.

It is important to note that drug laws are different in each state.  Find your state's controlled substance policy.


United Kingdom

Guiding illicit drug legislation in the United Kingdom is the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (MDA).  This legislation and associated regulations control the use of both legal prescription drugs and illegal drugs.  Drugs are classified as either A, B or C to reflect the degree of harm they are considered to cause to the individual or society when abused.  Each class has different maximum penalties that apply to prohibited activities.



The Misuse of Drugs Act states that it is an offence to:


  • possess a controlled substance unlawfully
  • possess a controlled substance with intent to         supply it
  • supply or offer to supply a controlled drug (even if it is given away for free)
  • allow a house, flat or office to be used by people taking drugs


Ireland

The Irish Misuse of Drugs Act is a drug control law that lumps all controlled substances into one Schedule. It was originally passed in 1977.

Read the Misuse of Drugs Act


Australia

Australian drug laws closely followed the development of international drug treaties. The National Campaign Against Drug Abuse (NCADA) began in 1985, which stresses that drug use should be treated primarily as a health issue. The National Drug Strategy emphasizes the importance of harm reduction. Some of the goals of the Strategy are to:

  • Minimize the level of illness, disease, injury and premature death associated with the use of alcohol, tobacco, pharmaceutical and illicit drugs;
  • Minimize the level and impact of criminal drug offenses and other drug-related crime, violence and antisocial behavior within the community;
  • Minimize the level of personal and social disruption, loss of quality of life, loss of productivity and other economic costs associated with the inappropriate use of alcohol and other drugs; and
  • Prevent the spread of hepatitis, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases associated with the unsafe injection of illicit drugs.

In June 1999, Commonwealth, State and Territory health and law enforcement Ministers agreed on a national approach to the development of a treatment instead of incarceration initiative designed to divert illicit drug users from the criminal justice system into education and treatment. Diversion is not considered appropriate for trafficking offences. Drug-involved offenders may be cautioned on the streets and provided with treatment referral information if their offense is minor. They can also be sent for assessment or directly to treatment rather than prison, as long as they do not pose a threat to society.

Post edited at 3:18 pm on Sep. 19, 2014 by greatescape

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Helpful Sources

Erowid
Complete registry of information on both legal and illegal drugs.  Provides an unbiased approach to drug law and use.  Additionally, contains extensive information on legality and drug-related current events.

The Lycaeum
Drug registry, forum, and source for unbiased drug information. (similar to erowid)

Drugs.com
Database for prescription medication

Drug Policy Alliance Network
The Drug Policy Alliance Network (DPA Network) is the nation's leading organization promoting policy alternatives to the drug war that are grounded in science, compassion, health and human rights.

WebMD
Medication encyclopedia

FreeVibe
The anti-drug approach

BlueLight
Complete drug discussion, information.

Post edited at 2:44 pm on May 27, 2009 by greatescape

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"We're all Heliogabalus, Bill"


10:01 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 | Joined: July 2007 | Days Active: 1,606
Join to learn more about greatescape Wisconsin, United States | Queer Female | Posts: 42,466 | Points: 62,011
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