Drugs can harm your wellbeing
Most people don’t take drugs but some people do use drugs on the basis that they might feel pleasant or relaxed or achieve a ‘high.’
However, in many cases, these feelings may be followed by even more powerful sensations, such as depression, anxiety, nausea, confusion, lack of control, paranoia, guilt, embarrassment, hangovers, loneliness, and cravings for more drugs.
Drugs are chemicals. Every drug is different, but generally, drugs interfere with your nervous system's basic functions. Drugs are potentially dangerous. And because most drugs are illegal there's no way to control what goes into them.
Some drugs can cause more long-term damage from a physical point of view while other drugs can have a stronger psychological impact and can trigger pre-existing mental conditions (like schizophrenia). There's no way of you knowing that beforehand.
Drugs in Liverpool
Drugs are a major problem nationwide and Liverpool as a major international seaport plays a key role in reducing international drug trade. Merseyside has amongst the highest rates of individuals found guilty or cautioned for drug offences in England. Drugs are a major threat to wellbeing not only in users and their families but to the wider community in the crime that is associated with drugs.
Liverpool has helped pioneer a range of initiatives to reduce harm from alcohol and drugs. With a huge student population and a very high visitor population accessing nightlife there is a constant challenge needed to eradicate the dangers posed by illegal drugs.
You will often hear about a drug culture and it is true that if you keep away from situations or places that might entice you or your friends or family to drugs then drugs will stay away from you.
Types of drugs
There are hundreds of different types of drugs and as a result people try to classify them either officially within law or even making their own decisions as to the drugs potential impact– you may have heard people use terms such as hard or soft drugs.
Such judgment can be misinformed and whilst it is true that not all drugs are addictive and the chance of getting hooked after taking drugs once is very low; the risk of developing a problem can be high.
There is a constant debate about some drugs such as cannabis, which is not a physically addictive drug, but can be a trigger to any underlying mental health problems.
Drugs can also easily become a habit and then an addiction.
The National Drugs Helpline is a 24-hour, seven-days a week, free and confidential telephone service that offers advice and information for those who are concerned, or have questions, about drugs.
0800 77 66 00
Talk to Frank is accessible to young people and can be contacted on the same number as National Drugs Helpline. They also have a text phone number:
Taking drugs – finding help and support
People who are dealing with addiction usually feel the need for the drug regularly and have a constant supply of it. Having failed to stop using they will do things they normally wouldn't do (such as illegal activities like stealing).
If you think you, a member of your family or a friend has a problem, think about how you're going to approach dealing with the situation and seek help.
The sort of help offered will depend on the individual and could require any of the following : becoming an In-patient and/or outpatient, detox, prescription medication, counseling or group therapy or complimentary therapies (like acupuncture, meditation).
Help for adults
ACT Now for 24 hour advice and help
0800 028 1300
The Lighthouse Project is a local organisation reducing harm caused by substance misuse
0151 530 2566 www.lighthouseproject.co.uk