Drug addiction has existed since mankind discovered psycho-active substances. Addiction has been a major health concern in the United States for quite a long time. There are many different kinds of drugs available throughout the country, and whether or not an individual becomes addicted is very subjective depending on what kind of drugs he or she uses, the frequency of use, and any potential underlying risk factors. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that alcohol is the most commonly abused chemical substance, closely followed by tobacco, marijuana, and illicit drugs (which can range from stimulants like cocaine or methamphetamine to opioid narcotics like heroin).
Not everyone who picks up a chemical substance will become addicted. Most people who experiment with drugs will not develop a serious, life-threatening substance abuse problem. When it comes to who gets addicted and who does not, the method of ingestion will play a significant role. Some drugs come in pill form, and they are taken orally, or swallowed (like prescription painkillers or prescription stimulants). Some come in a powder form, and they are ingested nasally, or snorted (like cocaine). Some drugs are smoked (like marijuana or crack cocaine) and some are injected intravenously (like heroin).
When it comes to enhancing addictiveness, taking drugs nasally or intravenously poses the highest risk. Take a look at both of these methods of drug abuse more in-depth, and reach out to us with any additional questions that you may have. If you or someone you love has been struggling with an addiction of any type or severity, we are available to help.
Dangers of Snorting Drugs
Certain illicit substances are traditionally ingested nasally, such as cocaine or heroin in powder form. Nowadays, those who are struggling with drug abuse will often snort other substances, like certain medications, to achieve a faster and more intense “high.” For example, it is now common practice to crush and snort prescription medications like Adderall, Ritalin, oxycodone, and hydrocodone. Some mistakenly believe that snorting prescription medications is safer than snorting street drugs like cocaine.
Unfortunately, those that choose this method of ingestion will almost always do short and long-term damage. Not only will the respiratory system suffer (after being repeatedly exposed to chemicals and toxins), but the nasal passages will suffer as well. In some cases, they may entirely collapse. Some begin to experience chronic nosebleeds, some permanently lose their sense of smell, and some will experience a chronic runny nose and issues with the esophagus. Snorting drugs can lead to throat cancer, a deteriorated nose, heart attack, seizures, coma, and death.
Dangers of Injecting Drugs
Of all ingestion methods, injecting drugs is the most dangerous by far. Not only are those who inject drugs at a significantly greater risk of overdose-related death, but they will also:
Become addicted far more quickly
Put themselves at risk of certain contractible diseases, like HIV and Hepatitis
Suffer from skin rashes, infections, and abscesses
Experience collapsed veins
Do severe damage to their respiratory and cardiovascular organs
Suffer from psychological disorders
If you know someone who has been engaging in intravenous drug abuse, seeking help immediately will be necessary.