Get informed : Drugs and addictions

Drugs
   
Addiction

WHEN DOES DRUG USE BECOME A PROBLEM?

Your drug use is a problem if:
  • You spend a lot of time planning your drug purchases
  • You take drugs on your own
  • You abandon your regular activities (athletic, artistic, other) to spend more time taking drugs
  • You need larger quantities of drugs to get the same effect you got from lower quantities earlier on
  • You spend more and more money on drugs
  • You trade personal effects for drugs
  • You commit crimes in order to purchase drugs

WHAT IS ADDICTION?

The majority of young people who take drugs believe they can control their drug use. Truth be told, we don’t develop a drug addiction from one day to the next. The addiction takes hold progressively, even if the person believes their drug use is under control. You have to be very careful!

There are two types of addictions:

Physical addiction occurs when a person develops a tolerance to a substance: the body gets used to the substance, and more and more is needed in order to produce the desired effect. In addition, stopping taking the drug can cause withdrawal symptoms such as tremors, sweating, nausea, and vomiting.

Psychological addiction is the irresistible need to take one or several substances. The person feels like they can’t do without their drugs. Drugs are taken not for pleasure but out of the belief that taking them will make one feel more comfortable or better able to deal with stress, fear, grief, anxiety or difficult situations. A person who is psychologically addicted to drugs has a hard time controlling their drug consumption.

Some drugs (alcohol, tranquilizers, sleeping pills, opiates, minor and major stimulants) can lead to physical addiction, but all psychotropic substances can lead to psychological addiction.


HOW TO HELP YOURSELF
  • Get support from people you trust.
  • Take the time to examine your drug habits. Take note of what you take, when, where, how, and why.
  • Be aware of the advantages and disadvantages. Do things get easier when you take drugs? What happens when you don’t take drugs?
  • Find ways to reduce or stop your drug use (avoid certain friends, prepare answers for people who will ask questions about changes in your drug use, participate in activities that you enjoy).
  • Above all, talk to a counsellor who’s familiar with drug problems. It’s very difficult to get out of this situation on your own.
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