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07 September 2010

What are the different types of substances?

It is important to educate your child about drugs. The best place to start is to educate yourself.

It is important to educate your child about drugs. The best place to start is to educate yourself.

Basically three types of substances are abused:

  • Opiates: This group includes heroin, morphine and opium. They mimic the brain’s feel-good hormones, called endorphins, and all bring about a state of peaceful euphoria.
  • Amphetamines: They stimulate the nervous system. Cocaine, nicotine, Ecstasy and speed fall into this group. These are the so-called ‘uppers’.
  • The downers, namely alcohol and barbiturates. These are nervous system depressants. Alcohol is legal, but can produce very similar effects to mind-altering substances. Alcohol detoxification can be quite dramatic. In severe cases it can resemble detoxification from heroin.
 
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