Drug and Alcohol Information

Alcoholism,

is a disease that is also known as “alcohol dependence.”

Club Drugs,

consisting of Ecstasy, GHB, and Rohypnol, can be found at all-night “raves.”

Cocaine

is a powerfully addictive stimulant that directly affects the brain.

Ecstasy

is a synthetic, psychoactive drug with hallucinogenic & stimulant properties.

Fentanyl

is a synthetic opiate analgesic similar to, but more potent than, morphine.

Hallucinogens

cause profound distortions in a person’s perceptions of reality.

Heroin

is processed from morphine and appears as a white or brown powder.

Inhalants

consist of paint, white out, lighter fluid, air fresheners, hair spray and markers.

LSD

is a colorless, odorless drug sold in tablets, capsules, and liquid forms.

Marijuana

is a mixture of dried, shredded leaves of the hemp plant Cannabis sativa.

Methamphetamines

can be found in a powder, crystal, or table-like form.

Rohypnol

has been a concern for the last few years due to its abuse as a “date rape” drug.

Signs of Drug and Alcohol Abuse

If you notice unexplained changes in physical appearance or behavior, it may be a sign of substance use – or it could be a sign of another problem. You will not know definitively until a health professional does a comprehensive screening.

Physical Signs

  • Change in sleeping patterns
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Slurred or agitated speech
  • Sudden or dramatic weight loss or gain
  • Skin abrasions/bruises
  • Neglected appearance/poor hygiene
  • Sick more frequently
  • Accidents or injuries

Behavioral Signs

  • Hiding use; lying and covering up
  • Sense that the person will “do anything” to use again regardless of consequences
  • Loss of control or choice of use (drug-seeking behavior)
  • Loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities
  • Emotional instability
  • Hyperactive or hyper-aggressive
  • Depression
  • Missing school or work
  • Failure to fulfill responsibilities at school or work
  • Complaints from teachers or co-workers
  • Reports of intoxication at school or work
  • Furtive or secretive behavior
  • Avoiding eye contact
  • Locked doors
  • Going out every night
  • Change in friends or peer group
  • Change in clothing or appearance
  • Unusual smells on clothing or breath
  • Heavy use of over-the-counter preparations to reduce eye reddening, nasal irritation, or bad breath
  • Hidden stashes of alcohol
  • Alcohol missing from your supply
  • Prescription medicine missing
  • Money missing
  • Valuables missing
  • Disappearances for long periods of time
  • Running away
  • Secretive phone calls

Because addiction has so many dimensions and disrupts so many aspects of an individual’s life, treatment for this illness is never simple. Drug treatment must help the individual stop using drugs and maintain a drug-free lifestyle, while achieving productive functioning in the family, at work, and in society. Effective drug abuse and addiction treatment programs typically incorporate many components, each directed to a particular aspect of the illness and its consequences.

Three decades of scientific research and clinical practice have yielded a variety of effective approaches to drug addiction treatment. Extensive data document that drug addiction treatment is as effective as are treatments for most other similarly chronic medical conditions.