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Understanding drug dependence

Understanding drug dependence signs and Symptoms for appropriate action to be taken

Understanding drug dependence signs and Symptoms: Methamphetamine, cocaine and other stimulants

The seriousness with which addiction to substances is wreaking havoc in our communities can no longer be taken for granted. When it comes to addiction, every one of us is vulnerable hence we must all stand out in fighting the scourge by first understanding drug dependence signs and symptoms. In our previous postings, we have listed several substances and we are not about to stop. We want to continue from where we left by looking at this class of drugs which includes amphetamines, methamphetamine, cocaine, and methylphenidate (Ritalin) along side signs of use and dependence which may include:

  • Euphoria
  • Decreased appetite
  • Rapid speech
  • Irritability
  • Restlessness
  • Depression as the drug wears off
  • Nasal congestion and damage to the mucous membrane of the nose in users who snort drugs
  • Insomnia
  • Weight loss
  • Increased heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature
  • Paranoia

Methamphetamine, also known as “meth,” is a particularly dangerous drug. It is highly addictive and causes a number of short and long-term health consequences. Methamphetamine is relatively inexpensive and widely available.


Use of hallucinogens produces different signs and symptoms depending on the drug. The most common hallucinogens are LSD and phencyclidine (PCP).

Signs of LSD use include:

  • Hallucinations
  • Greatly reduced perception of reality, for example, interpreting input from one of your senses as another, such as hearing colors
  • Permanent mental changes in perception
  • Rapid heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Tremors
  • Flashbacks, a re-experience of the hallucinations — even years later

Signs of PCP use include:

  • Hallucinations
  • Euphoria
  • Delusions
  • Panic
  • Loss of appetite
  • Depression
  • Aggressive, possibly violent behavior


The signs and symptoms of inhalant use vary depending on what substance is inhaled. Some commonly inhaled substances include glue, paint thinners, correction fluid, felt tip marker fluid, gasoline, cleaning fluids and household aerosol products.

When inhaled, these products can cause brief intoxication and a decreased feeling of inhibition. Long-term use may cause seizures and damage to the brain, liver, and kidneys. Inhalant use can also cause death.

Understanding drug dependence signs and Symptoms: Narcotic painkillers

Opioids are narcotic, pain-killing drugs produced naturally from opium or made synthetically. This class of drugs includes heroin, morphine, codeine, methadone, and oxycodone (OxyContin). If you’re prescribed these medications by a doctor, take them exactly as directed. Don’t increase your dose without first talking to your doctor.

Signs of narcotic use and dependence can include:

  • Reduced sense of pain
  • Sedation
  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Slowed breathing
  • Needle marks (if injecting drugs)
When to see a doctor

If you think your drug use is out of control or is causing problems, the best thing to do is seeking for help. The sooner, the greater your chances are for a long-term recovery. Your family doctor may be a good place to start and also seek help from line professionals, like for instance Dr. Dalal Akoury, founded this facility (AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center) primarily to offer lasting solutions to people like you across the globe. It will interest you to note that, doctor Akoury’s practice focuses on personalized medicine through healthy lifestyle choices that deal with primary prevention and underlying causes instead of patching up symptoms. You can, therefore, reach her on telephone number 843 213 1480 for a one on one discussion about all your concerns.

Understanding drug dependence signs and Symptoms: Drug addiction commencement