1. Definitions

Drug is an illegal substance that is usually addictive when ingested or induced into the body system and which is capable of altering one’s behavior and perception.

Drug addiction is the state of psychological and physiological dependence on drug substances, which are potentially harmful.

Narcotic drugs are drugs which are typically addictive and which generate effects ranging from pain relief for convulsions, sleep stupor, and coma. The common examples of narcotic drugs are opium, cocaine, and heroin.

Depressants are sedative drugs of agents which have the capability of inhibiting or slowing down the rate of the body’s crucial functions.

Stimulants are pharmacological drugs or agents which augment temporarily in the functional activity of the body organs, systems, or parts.

Opioids are substances that occur naturally inside the human brain and which contain opium but are not produced from opium.

Cannabinoids are organic chemical substances which belong to the group that constitute active constituents of cannabis sativa.

Hallucinogens are chemicals substances usually induced into the body system, such as lysergic acid, which cause one to experience hallucinations.

Inhalants are chemical substances that are breathed through the nose or mouth, mostly as medicines or simply for their pacifying effect.

Over the counter drugs are drug substances which are often acquired through purchase from the chemists or from quarks, other than those prescribed by the medical practitioner.

2. Timeline that Evidence the History of Drug Abuse

1492 – Christopher Columbus is first introduced to tobacco product given as a gift by his hosts when he landed in Bahamas for the first time.

1552 – The first council of the Lima Catholic Church denounces the use of coca leaf as a stimulant. The church council termed the plant as the work of the devil.

1588 – Church leaders of Lima Catholic church impose a ban on smoking cigarettes.

1600 – Tobacco becomes widespread in England.

1632 – The state government of Massachusetts bans public smoking.

1880 – Cigarette smoking in America rises to 500 million cigarettes a year as compared to 42 million in the previous five years (Miller, 2009).

1884 – Automated cigarette manufacturing machines are installed in the factory of pioneering tobacco entrepreneur Buck Duke, which produces 120,000 cigarettes a day.

1884 – Cocaine is declared a miraculous cure for a number of ailments including catarrh, hay fever, and toothache.

1887 – Oregon becomes the first state of the United States to put a ban on the sale of cocaine without prescription.

1937 – Congress enacts the Marijuana Tax Act meant to criminalize its use in the United States.

1954 – Major American tobacco companies deny the fact that tobacco is associated with lung cancer.

1970 – Congress enacts Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act that reduces the penalty for drug possession at the same time empowering law agencies to conduct drug related searches.

1975 – Minnesota becomes the first state to outlaw public smoking through the enactment of Clean Indoor Air Act for public health protection.

1984 – The government of Colombia becomes the first state to destroy cocaine worth $1 billion.

1986 – President Ronald Reagan together with the First Lady Nancy Reagan inaugurate a national crusade championing the campaign against drug abuse using the slogan "Just Say No."

1988 – New Drug Laws proposing a tough penalties for possession of certain quantities of drug are enacted by the government of North Carolina.

1989 – Drug Arrests in New Yolk city rise by 46% following the illegal possession of cocaine.

1998 – the American tobacco industry in collaboration with 46 states of the US sign the Master Settlement Agreement where all the tobacco companies in the US agreed to pay $246 billion over 25 years meant for off-setting the states' costs of treating tobacco-related ailments (Miller, 2009).

3. Motivations of Drug Users to Use Drugs

  • Sedateness. Some drugs alleviate certain pain or stress making the body fully comfortable.
  • Stimulation. Some drugs affect the central nervous system making the body function in a more normal and active manner than the state.
  • Tranquility. Certain drugs such as cocaine and heroin have the capability of arousing a sensational feeling in the body making the user feel exceptionally well.
  • Antibiotic function. Some drugs are embraced due to their curative and preventive functions against certain ailments.

4. Mention the Physiological, Psychological and Social Aspects of Drug Addiction

  • Physiological. The body begins craving for the drug following a sensational feeling of tranquility that often accompanies the use of that drug. The body also is stimulated to the point that its functions are activated tremendously unlike the sober state of the person (Miller, 2009).
  • Psychological. The abuser becomes very brave, assertive, and courageous to perform extraordinary activities which might not be possible in sobriety.
  • Socially. The abuser may find it easy or difficult to get along with the people depending on the nature of the social group. In most cases, the abuser gets along well with fellow abusers unlike non-abusers.

5. List of the Narcotic Drugs

  1. Opiates
  2. Acetyldihydrocodeine
  3. Propiram
  4. Ethylmorphine
  5. Acetorphine
  6. Codeine
  7. Propiram
  8. Nicodicodine

6. Factors that Put People at Risk for Addiction

  • Availability of the drug. Accessibility of the drug makes many people dependent on it.
  • Cost of the drug. Cheap drugs attract more users. Many users who buy cheap drugs easily get addicted to them due to their affordability.
  • Peer group influence. Those users who are pressurized by their peers get addicted to drugs easier than those who are self-driven.
  • Government policy. Varying restriction put against certain drugs by different countries make some drugs be prevalent in certain countries and rare in others. Disparities in government policies make trafficking crimes rampant and therefore, perpetuate the use of drugs and hamper the law enforcement effort.

7. Comparison and Contrast of the Physiological and Psychological Aspects of Drug Abuse

  1. A Table With The Most Common Drugs Used

Drug

Effects

Alcohol

  • Liver cirrhosis;
  • Blindness;
  • Moral decay;
  • Brain damage;
  • Memory loss and anxiety;
  • Addiction.

Ayahuasca

 

  • Changes in mood;
  • Psychotic-like episodes that can occur long after a person has taken the drug;
  • Respiratory depression;
  • Heart rate abnormalities;
  • Withdrawal syndrome.

Heroin

  • Euphoria;
  • Warm flushing of skin;
  • Dry mouth;
  • Heavy feeling in the hands and feet;
  • Clouded thinking;
  • Alternate wakeful and drowsy states;
  • Itching;
  • Nausea;
  • Vomiting;
  • Slowed breathing and heart rate.

Inhalants

  • Confusion;
  • Nausea;
  • Slurred speech;
  • Lack of coordination;
  • Euphoria;
  • Dizziness;
  • Drowsiness;
  • Disinhibition;
  • Lightheadedness, hallucinations/delusions;
  • Headaches;
  • Sudden sniffing death due to heart failure;

 

Ketamine

  • Problems with attention,learning, and memory;
  • Dreamlike states, hallucinations;
  • Sedation; confusion and problems with speaking;
  • Loss of memory; problems with moving, to the point of being immobile;
  • Raised blood pressure; unconsciousness.

Khat

  • Euphoria;
  • Increased alertness and arousal;
  • Increased blood pressure and
  • heart rate, depression;
  • Inability to concentrate;
  • Irritability, loss of appetite;
  • Insomnia.

Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD)

  • Rapid emotional swings;
  • Distortion of a person’s ability to recognize reality, think rationally, or communicate with others;
  • raised blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature; dizziness and insomnia;
  • loss of appetite; dry mouth;
  • sweating; numbness; weakness;
  • Tremors; enlarged pupils.

Marijuana (Cannabis)

 

  • Mental health problems;
  • Chronic cough;
  • Frequent respiratory infections.

MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly)

 

  • Long-lasting confusion,;
  • Depression;
  • Problems with attention,
  • memory, and sleep;
  • Increased anxiety, impulsiveness, aggression;
  • Loss of appetite;
  • Less interest in sex.

Tobacco

  • Increased blood pressure;
  • Problems with breathing and heart rate.

 

(ii) Table With The Florida Laws Regarding The Punishment Of This Crime

 

  1. Cocaine statute

 

Code Section

-775.082 to .084; 893.01, et seq.

Possession

-3rd degree felony; Possession of 28 g. is trafficking (1st degree felony)

Sale

- 2nd degree felony (penalties more severe near school)

Trafficking

 

 

 

-All sentencing is to be done pursuant to sentencing guidelines

28-200 g.: $50,000 and 3 yrs.;-

200-400 g.: $100,000 and 7 yrs.;

400 g.-150 kg.: 15 yrs. and $250,000;

Over 150 kg.: Potential life imprisonment

 

  1. Heroin Statute

 

Code Section

-775.082, et seq.; 893.01, et seq.

Possession

-3rd degree felony; Possession of 4 g. is trafficking.

Sale

 

- 2nd degree felony; Sales of over 10 g.: 1st degree felony

(penalties more severe near school)

Trafficking

 

 

 

 

- All sentencing to be done pursuant to sentencing guidelines:

4-14 g.: $50,000 and 3 yrs.; 1

4-28 g.: $100,000 and 15 yrs.;

28 g.-30 kg.: 25 yrs. and $500,000;

Over 30 kg.: 1st degree felony, life imprisonment

  1. Marijuana statute

Code Section

-893.13, et seq.

Possession

 

 

-3rd degree felony;

Under 20 grams: 1st degree misdemeanor;

In excess of 25 lbs. is trafficking (1st degree felony)

Sale

 

 

 

- 3rd degree felony, unless less than 20 g. for no

consideration, then 1st degree misdemeanor: penalty

as in §§775.082, 083, 084;

-Subsequent offense: 10 yrs.

Trafficking

 

 

 

-All sentencing done pursuant to sentencing guidelines:

25-2000 lbs.: mandatory $25,000 and 3 yrs.;

2000-10,000 lbs.: mandatory $50,000 and 7 yrs.;

Over 10,000 lbs.: 15 yrs. and mandatory $200,000

 

8. Critical Analysis of a Scientific Study Related to Drug Addiction

Alcoholism has for long been known to inflict dire physical, emotional, as well as financial toll on individuals, families, and the society in general. The study conducted by American Chemical Society established that a new class of drugs could have the potential to cure alcoholism without inflicting unwanted side effects that are caused by current therapies. American Chemical Society researchers unanimously agreed that alcoholism is a major problem in the U.S. as its abuse costs the country’s economy almost $220 billion every year (American Chemical Society, 2015). These research findings are shocking considering that most of alcoholics also abuse other drugs.

According to American Chemical Society (2015), the urge to drink is closely associated with the brain's pleasure centers. Scientists discovered that drinking alcohol triggers the brain to release dopamine; which is a neurochemical that often increases in response to pleasurable behavior like sex, eating, or listening to music. Consequently, the same scientists have designed drugs with the aim of treating alcoholism aiming at dopamine. It would be a big step in the right direction given that those drugs perform the function of dampening out the dopamine system a little. As a result, the drunkard may be inhibited from getting happy during the time he\she gets an alcoholic beverage.

Conversely, Savage, Kirsh, and Passik (2008) revealed that these perceived medications are derived from opioid antagonists. This is a class of compounds known to cause depression in some patients. It, actually, is against the logic as scientists at the American Chemical Society ignored the fact that the purported medicine of alcoholism is equally addictive and may lead to drug abuse. Another example is valium, which is a common drug used to treat alcoholism that is also addictive.

Although American Chemical Society researchers used this crucial knowledge to develop operative approaches of prevention and treatment with the aim of mitigating the damage that drug abuse causes to individuals, families, and communities, the discrepancies observed in their research findings are significant.

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