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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.

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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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