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The physical effects of drug abuse are extremely harmful to the user's health. The health problems associated with the drug abuse and addiction are many and varied, as well a potentially lethal. Drugs which are ingested by smoking tend to result in increased lung problems, mouth and throat cancers, etc. The physical effects of drug abuse on the central nervous system tend to list similar strings of symptoms involving psychotic behaviors. Stimulants give increased risks of heart attacks and so forth. Another common thread is pregnancy. The physical effects of drugs can have very strong adverse reactions in fetuses and cause associated problems. These problems can kill the baby and mother, or lead to lifetime health problems. Additionally, there are strong effects from mixing drugs.
When someone abuses drugs they experience physical effects of the substance they have taken. The stimulation of using cocaine, for instance, is followed by a "crash" : a period of anxiety, fatigue, depression, and a strong desire to use more cocaine to alleviate the feelings of the crash. Marijuana and alcohol interfere with motor control and are factors in many automobile accidents. Users of marijuana and hallucinogenic drugs may experience flashbacks, unwanted recurrences of the drug's effects weeks or months after use. Abrupt abstinence from certain drugs results in withdrawal symptoms. For example, heroin withdrawal symptoms cause vomiting, muscle cramps, convulsions, and delirium.
With the continued use of a physically addictive drug, tolerance develops. This means constantly increasing amounts of the drug are needed to duplicate the initial effect. Sharing hypodermic needles used to inject some drugs dramatically increases the risk of contracting AIDS and some types of hepatitis. In addition, increased sexual activity among drug users, both in prostitution and from the dis-inhibiting effect of some drugs, also puts them at a higher risk of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.
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