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Why Do People Take Drugs

Here are some of the reasons young people have given for taking drugs:

  • To take a break from reality
  • To be “cool” in front of friends 
  • To be popular in the group
  • To change something about their lives
  • To find a cure for pain
  • To escape or relax
  • To relieve boredom
  • To seem grown up
  • To rebel
  • To experiment
  • To run away from depression or troubles they refuse to face
  • To escape from emotional or financial problems

Bottom Line: People take drugs because they want to change something about their lives. They think drugs are a solution. But eventually, the drugs become the problem.

Commonly Abused Drugs and Some of Their Side Effects


  • Central nervous system stimulation and overstimulation
  • Cardiac arrest or respiratory failure
  • AIDS, hepatitis and other diseases contracted from dirty or shared needles and other equipment


  • Decreased sexual pleasure, indifference to sex
  • Sedation proceeding to coma
  • Lung diseases, like pneumonia and tuberculosis


  • Chronic recurring hallucinations (flashbacks)
  • Potentially devastating psychiatric effect
  • Tremors


  • Damages the lungs and the heart
  • Reduces the body’s ability to fight lung infections and illness.
  • bloodshot eyes


  • Permanent damage to the brain
  • Blurred vision
  • Severe anxiety

Dangers of Drug Addiction

Losing Your Health

  • Irregular or rapid heart rate (cocaine, marijuana, meth, PCP)
  • Heart failure (cocaine, meth)
  • Blood-borne diseases like hepatitis or HIV (injectable drugs)
  • High blood pressure (cocaine, meth, PCP)
  • Impotence or infertility (marijuana, meth, narcotic drugs)
  • Learning and memory problems (marijuana)
  • Lung damage (marijuana, PCP)
  • Psychosis (LSD, cocaine, meth)
  • Respiratory depression and coma (tranquilizers, narcotics)
  • Seizures (tranquilizers, cocaine, narcotics)

Losing Your Relationships

Some of the greatest dangers of addiction don’t involve injury, illness or homicide, but the death of close personal relationships. By its nature, addiction separates the user from his or her loved ones, so that the addict’s relationship with the drug takes precedence over everything else. Professional relationships are quickly destroyed by addiction. When you give your life over to drug use, it’s hard to maintain a regular work schedule.

Losing Yourself

The final danger of addiction is the loss of self. You can lose yourself by destroying your health, by trashing your integrity, by abandoning your personal relationships and by giving up your dreams for the sake of drugs. Many addicts feel like they are fighting an internal battle between the part of them that wants to recover and the part that is intent on destruction. Very few drug addicts fight this battle alone and win.

Bottom Line: Drug addiction can destroy you and your family. Drugs will take your health, family, career and everything important to you.

Impact of Drug Addiction on Sexual Relationships

If you are abusing drugs then it can be almost impossible for you to maintain intimate relationships. This is because these substances will become your obsession, and there will be no room for anyone else. As you fall further into addiction, you may even lose all interest in sex completely.

Bottom Line: The person who is abusing drugs may feel almost incapable of feeling true affection for other people – they are too self obsessed to think beyond their own needs.

Impact of Addiction on the Sex Drive

Drug abuse can have a devastating impact on a person’s sexual health. Some drugs such as cocaine have the reputation for increasing sexual performance but such effects are short lived. Over any length of time the abuse of these substances will lead to decreased sexual functioning.

Bottom Line: Males may find it difficult to become aroused and so engaging in sexual activity becomes almost impossible – they may be suffering from erectile dysfunction. Women will also suffer from decreased libido as a result of drug abuse.

What Drug Dealers will Tell You

Most teenagers start using drugs in the first place due to pressure from their friends. They wanted to be cool and popular. Dealers know this.

They will approach you as a friend and offer to “help you out” with “something to bring you up.” The drug will “help you fit in” or “make you cool.”

Drug dealers, motivated by the profits they make, will say anything to get you to buy their drugs.

They will tell you that “cocaine will make your life a party” and that “heroin is a warm blanket.” If you take Ecstasy, “you can be with a lot of girls.”

They don’t care if the drugs ruin your life as long as they are getting paid. All they care about is money.

Bottom Line: Get the facts about drugs. Make your own decisions.

Is It Okay If You Just Try It Once?

Many people experiment with heroin thinking, “I’ll try it once or twice. I can always stop.” But those who start down that road find it nearly impossible to turn back.

Bottom Line: Even a single dose of heroin can start a person on the road to addiction.

How Does It Trap You?

When you first shoot up, you will most likely puke and feel repelled, but soon you will try it again. It will cling to you like an obsessed lover. The rush of the hit and the way you’ll want more, as if you were being deprived of air—that’s how it will trap you.

Final Words

Humans are social creatures. We want to fit into the "pack." 

Put a person into a group of PhDs, and she/he will act much differently than when she/he is with a group of drunkards.

But since we are social creatures, we tend to gravitate towards people that we are comfortable with.  Educated people tend to graduate towards people that are educated.  Wealthy people tend to hang out with other wealthy people.

Bird of the same feather flock together.

A big part of who you become in life has to do with who you choose to surround yourself with.  Sometimes luck controls who walks into your life, but you decide who you let stay, who you pursue, and who you let walk back out.

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Written by Sapna Vyas Patel , PhD in Nutrition Science and Dietetics
Sapna writes simple, easy to understand articles that are based on pure scientific evidence. She is one of the most popular fitness professionals in India and is followed on social media by fitness enthusiasts, nutritionists, dieticians, doctors, trainers, and professionals.

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