SSYP Newsletter- Subject of Drugs
SSYP Newsletter – Edition 5
With everyone returning to school next week hopefully normality will return. In the meantime, here is the 55th Edition of our newsletter on the subject of drugs.
Drugs are chemicals that change the way a person's body works. You've probably heard that drugs are bad for you, but what does that mean and why are they bad?
Prescription Medication These are legal drugs that doctors can prescribe for patients. It is not legal or safe for people to use these medicines any way they want or to buy them from people who are selling them illegally.
Cigarettes and Alcohol These are two types of drugs that are legal to buy as long as you are over 18. This is in place as both alcohol and cigarettes can have severe consequences on brain and body development. Cigarettes and alcohol are still not healthy for adults and can cause a range of fatal illnesses.
Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas) I am sure you have seen these silver canisters discarded on streets and in parks. They contain nitrous oxide which, when inhaled, slows down the user’s brain, it can also cause fits of giggles and laughter. Nitrous oxide can also result in intense headaches and paranoia. Heavy regular use of nitrous oxide can lead to a deficiency of vitamin B12 and to a form of anemia. This can in turn lead to serious nerve damage, causing tingling and numbness in the fingers and toes. This can be very painful and make walking difficult. It can also cause unconsciousness and suffocation from lack of oxygen.
Cannabis This is an illegal drug. It is a common misconception that due to cannabis being derived from plants that it is natural and healthy, nothing could be further from the truth. The psychoactive part of the drug is THC which affects perception and can cause hallucinations. Like all illegal drugs, there is nothing controlling what goes into it and the THC level is unknown which can lead to extremely dangerous consequences. The risk of developing a psychotic illness is higher in people who use cannabis. It is possible to get addicted to cannabis and it can be difficult to stop taking it.
The bottom line is both legal and illegal drugs are dangerous and can have devastating consequences, even for adults.
Marijuana is a free self-group that supports stopping using marijuana (cannabis); Marijuana Anonymous UK (marijuana-anonymous.org.uk)
For open and honest advice and information about drugs please have a look at the talktofrank website. There is a wealth of information and there is also guidance on what to do in an emergency; www.talktofrank.com/
If you are or some else is struggling with drug use there is help and advice out there, do not suffer in silence. There is help and support available on the NHS website; www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/drug-addiction-getting-help/
For advice about alcohol, Childline is a good site to look at and covers a wide variety of other topics; www.childline.org.uk/info-advice/you-your-body/drugs-alcohol-smoking/alcohol/
If you are old enough to have an Instagram account, have a look at the Your Police UK page, it has lots of interesting age related content and advice and it’s updated regularly; www.instagram.com/yourpolice.uk/
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