Health risks of drug abuse

Drug abuse is the habitual use of substances, and some of them are illegal in most jurisdictions around the world. There are health risks involved for those who abuse drugs and these health effects can either be experienced after a short or long term use of drug or substance abuse. Some of the examples of drug abuse include the use of marijuana, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy, methamphetamine, consumption of excess alcohol, cigarette smoking among other substances. Below are different health risks associated with drug abuse:

Neurological Risks

Drug abuse affects the brain to generate the euphoric effects which is the main reason why people abuse the drugs in the first place. What many do not know is that they can adversely affect their brain functioning or rather pose neurological risks to themselves. Cases of neurological effects such as loss of memory, poor judgments or decision making and in severe cases it has led to a stroke, seizures, and severe brain damage.

Liver and Kidney Damage

Drug abuse can also lead to liver and kidney damage. A person abusing substances can experience a kidney damage or failure especially after experiencing a constant increase in body temperatures and muscle strains and breakdown. A drug such as heroin has been proved to cause both the kidney and liver damage and its use is therefore highly risky if you wish to maintain your healthy organs and lifestyle.

Cardiovascular Risks

Substance abuse can also lead to cardiovascular problems such as heart attacks, abnormal heart rates, and other heart complications. For those who use drugs that require injections such heroin, their heart valves or blood vessels can be vulnerable to imminent infections that can be worse if left untreated. There are also some instances when the excessive injections can lead to the collapsing of the veins which can adversely affect the blood circulation to the heart and therefore cause more complications.

Weaken Immune System

Drug abuse weakens the immune system, and this makes the human body be vulnerable to infectious diseases. Additionally, the substance abuse that requires the use of needles and syringes poses more risks to blood-infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis.

Prenatal Effects

These are health risks associated with the pregnant women who abuse drugs. Some of the health hazards that expectant ladies can experience include possible miscarriages and low birth weight. On the other hand, the newborn baby can develop drug dependency syndrome if the mother is a drug addict.

Respiratory Effects

The abuse of drugs such as cigarettes or marijuana can cause respiratory problems. Cigarettes smoking can cause bronchitis and emphysema. The drug abuse can also affect the breathing by blocking the air from entering the lungs, and for those who are asthmatic, their condition can be worsened.


In worse cases, the use of drugs such as cigarettes can cause different types cancers such as lungs, stomach, and mouth among other types. Marijuana use has also been linked to testicular cancer as well while the use of certain types of steroids has also been reported to cause or risk the development of liver cancer.

Gastrointestinal Effects

The abuse of drugs is also known to cause gastrointestinal effects such as abdominal pain and decay or damage of the bowel tissue especially to those who abuse cocaine. Other drugs also cause severe constipation or acid reflux while others have been known to cause nausea and vomiting after use.

Hormonal Effects

Some drugs or excessive substance abuse has been proven to affect the normal production or development of hormones. Some of the effects include infertility as well as the shrinking of the male testicles. In some cases, drugs can cause abnormal growth of hair while they can also make women to have baldness such as those experienced in observed in men.

Musculoskeletal Effects

Drugs such as steroids when used by growing teenagers can affect their growth such as ending the growth of bones at an early stage which results to a short physique or stature. Other drugs can also cause severe cramping of the muscles or weakening of the muscles altogether.

These health risks of drug abuse can be worsened if the proper steps are not taken immediately to stabilize or eliminate the condition. Drugs have adverse effects on human health, and it's important for one to equip themselves with its effects before taking the path of abusing them.