This country is in the grip of an epidemic that has claimed countless lives, this is the scourge of drug use and substance abuse. Not only is it responsible for devastating effects on the lives and health of the users, but on those that love and care for the ones who become caught in the web of addiction. But these drugs aren’t just the insidious and dangerous drugs we learned about in school, there are everyday substances like nicotine and alcohol that rank among the most addictive, and even some that are legitimately prescribed by doctors and other healthcare workers, that still ruin lives every day.
Some drugs are prescribed for the treatment of ADD & ADHD, which are necessary for some children to be able to focus in class. Drugs like these are abused by those looking for a cheap stimulating high and are often at the heart of someone taking advantage of someone else. Some drugs are prescribed to help those with debilitating back or leg injuries live with the constant pain, but when they’re abused they are some of the most powerfully addictive substances on the planet.
Even when legally prescribed, and used per the doctor’s orders, many medications can become addictive and build dependency in their users. Then there are the drugs that you expect to be highly addictive and are known to be dangerous, and people still become addicted to them. Even after warnings from everyone around them, they end up falling down the slippery slope of dependence and addiction and are eventually too deep to escape on their own.
There are countless different drugs, and they all have a long list of ways they are dangerous to the average person. They will each have their potential side effects and withdrawal symptoms as well. While all of the effects and potential health risks may vary to some extent, most of the common signs of addiction will remain the same. In fact, the signs of addiction are so predictable, they have been distilled down to a formal set of criteria outlined in the DSM-V.
What Are The Most Dangerous Drugs in The World?
The most dangerous drugs in the world are a long and diverse list, and there are several factors that are considered when each is chosen. Some considerations include how addictive or potentially addictive the substance is, the power of the effects and their duration, and how difficult they are to break an addiction to. Here are some of the most dangerous drugs currently available:
While it may seem innocuous to many, alcohol remains one of the most commonly abused substances in the entire world, and the US is no different. Not only has our country become so entrenched in the alcohol-centered standard of “recreation”, but we have also begun to create our own “holidays” out of events where the largest activity can arguably be drinking.
In many areas of the country, the 21st birthday of a young adult is one of the most important and heavily celebrated days in their lives. Not only are they finally able to purchase their own alcohol at any standard point of sale, but that transition is often celebrated with an unbelievable display of binge drinking. This can involve drinking to such excess that the individual blacks out or experiences alcohol poisoning. This is just one example of an occasion when alcohol is often consumed to incredible excess.
The US has also ascribed a heavy value to drinking during national holidays like Christmas or the 4th of July, where most people have the day off of work and do not have to moderate their intoxication much. This leads to the normalization of frequent and abusive alcohol consumption, nationally.
Benzodiazepines are a special class of sedatives or depressants that are most frequently used to address and control the symptoms of anxiety or panic disorders. They are most often recognized by brand names such as Xanax, Valium, and Klonopin, and are abused for their intense and fast-acting relaxant effects. They are also responsible for a large portion of overdose events.
While “benzos” often bring a rapid sense of relaxation or calm, they are also a constant source of dangerous withdrawal symptoms that, if experienced without medical supervision, could be deadly. Not only can they cause significant and severe respiratory depression, but stopping them once the nervous system has become dependent on them can lead to potentially fatal seizures.
- Cocaine & Crack
The coca plant was used for many years as a source of traditional medicine, but once it was concentrated it became a source of addictive stimulation and a euphoria-producing drug. Cocaine is a white powder that not only makes the user feel a surge of euphoria but also makes them feel much more social and outgoing. It also raises the blood pressure, heart rate, and respiration of the user to potentially dangerous levels.
When cocaine is processed it can be made into a smokable form called crack. This not only makes the effects much more potent, but it makes the user feel them almost immediately. The drawback to this, however, is that the intense high only lasts for a short while, leaving the user with a strong craving for more of the drug, as well as the beginnings of withdrawal sickness.
Heroin is the most popular preparation of the sap from the opium poppy and is used by countless addicts every day. It is a powder that can range from white to black and is taken in several different ways depending on the needs of the user. Some users snort it, like cocaine, while other users smoke it, though smoking it is much less common. The most common way for a user to administer their heroin is to inject it.
Heroin is incredibly addictive, and those who are dependent on it can begin feeling withdrawals set in within hours of the last dose. Heroin is also known for making the user heavily dependent on it, resulting in incredibly difficult withdrawal and detox symptoms. This is also commonly seen in prescription opioids.
- Crystal Meth
Methamphetamine is one of the most potent stimulants available, and when encountered in its crystal form it can be one of the most addictive as well. Frequently seen as a glassy crystal or powder, the meth is often either snorted, smoked, or injected, resulting in a variety of feeling intensities and durations.
Those who become addicted to meth can suffer some of the most serious health effects, particularly from smoking, due to the corrosive nature of the smoke. The damage caused by meth can reach just about every system and organ in the body.
Side-Effects of Using The Most Dangerous Drugs In The World
There are countless different side effects and risks of using some of the most dangerous drugs in the world, but most of them will have a large overlap for the most serious effects. The most dangerous side effects of these drugs can include risk of seizure, risk of coma, respiratory depression, nausea & vomiting, dangerous increases or decreases to blood pressure, dangerous increases or decreases in heart rate, irregular heart rate, delirium, delusions, hallucinations, and potentially fatal central nervous system depression.
There is also a long list of side effects that are considered to be much more minor, however, when taken in combination with other effects, they can often prove more dangerous than when encountered by themselves. The more minor side effects include headache, tremors and muscle spasms, dizziness, vertigo, vision problems, slurring speech, itching or other unpleasant sensations, sexual dysfunction, and more.
Signs You Are Addicted To One Of The Most Dangerous Drugs
There are significant changes that you may notice in your life, or in the life of someone who has become addicted to one of the most dangerous drugs. Some will be obvious, but some may be much easier to hide or conceal to those who aren’t very close.
There will often be significant changes to personal grooming, appearance, and hygiene, with the user often becoming less concerned with these things. There is also likely to be a reduction in the effort put towards things like personal relationships, education, and professional status or career.
There will also frequently be a change socially, in how they associate and conduct themselves in their social circles, with addicts often changing peer groups to a large degree. This is due to the new peers gained through substance use.
What To Do If You Are Addicted To One Of The Most Dangerous Drugs: Treatment Options
If you or someone you care about may be addicted to one of the most dangerous drugs, the most important thing you can do is reach out today to discuss your needs privately. Not only will professional help be much more likely to succeed than your efforts alone, but they will also be much more comfortable and safer from a medical standpoint. Start recovery off right, by getting help and building a strong foundation for future recovery.