Drug Abuse today is a major social problem which, though concerns with an individual;s deviation from the proper social code of conduct, in turn, affect the society at a large. It is a widespread and critical problem not only of the western countries today but has emerged as one of the major concerns of the Indian Society also. India, today, has not only become a key transit center for drugs but also a large consumption center too. According to one estimate, India has about 10 lacks heroin addicts alone. The monthly drug sale in India varies between Rs 100 crore to Rs 125 Crore. The use of illicit and prohibited drugs today is not just confined to street urchins and the lower classed but is fast spreading into middle and upper class youth of the society.
Definitional aspect of the term ‘Drug Abuse’ states that it is the use of illegal drug or the misuse of a legitimate drug in such a way that it results in physical or psychological harm. It includes smoking of ganja or hashish, intake of heroin, cocaine or LSD, or injection morphine, drinking alcohol etc. The word ‘addiction’ implies bring physically dependent on a particular substance. It is really a stage that the body requires constant administration of the drug in order to remain functional and if the use is disrupted, the normal body functioning is interfered with, This is the physical dependence upon drugs. Psychological dependence also occurs when an individual relies on the drug for the feeling that it produces. Phrases like ‘high on speed’,’trip’ or ‘getting kicks’ are generally used by addicts and abusers.
A continuous intake of drug results in an overpowering desire or compulsion to continue taking it and to obtain it by any means. This happens due to physical and psychological dependence upon the drug and also encourages a tendency to increase the dose or the frequency. Drugs are of various kinds such as alchohol. sedatives, stimulants, narcotics hallucinogens and nicotiine. Sedatives relas the nervous system which if given under medical supervision is for a curative prupose but can be misuse by addicts wheres stimulants active the nervous system. Caffeine and cocaine, popularly called ‘pep-pills’ fall under this category. Narcotics are like sedative which produce feelings of pleasure, strength, superiority, reduice hunger and lessen ihibitions. opium, Marijuana, Heroin (Smack), Morphine, Pathedine, Cocaine and cannabis such as charas, ganja and bhang are all narcotics. They are either smoked, dniffed or injected, hallucinogens as the name suggests, produce distortions of perception e.g., KSD. Cigarettes, bidis, cigars, snuffs, tobacco etc are Nicotines, the frequent use of which may cause heart attack, lung cancer of bronchitis.
The most vulnerable part of society to drugs are the adolescents – the students in high schools and colleges. In oreder to merely try new and adventurous things, or under peer pressure or many a times imitating the actionsof their favourite stars – children get caught into the vicious cycle of drug intake unknowingly and innocently. Gradually, they get havitual and what had initially started of as fun and adventure becomes their need and compulsion. By the time they realize, it it too late for them to break away without any outside help. the addiction becomes chronic because te adventure starts in hiding due to parental fear and social stigma. thus, the addict struggles all alone even if he wants to break free but fails in all his attempts.
Thus to control drug abuse firstly, the children should be educated about drugs and their harmful effects from an early age. Secondly, strict laws should be made to punish people caught dealing in such evil transscations. Role of families, parents and teachers becomes very crucial. Healthy dialogue should be encouraged during adolescence between the children and theirparents or teachers: Merely observing June 26 as the Internations Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is not enough. All measures or compulsions-even punishments, to chek the evil of drug addiction form spreading and paralyzing the society should be taken up.