The danger of recreational alcohol and drug use
Recreational use refers to legal and illegal substances that are used without monitoring your intake. Recreational drugs are used for pleasure, fun, or to improve life in some way. Like any other drug, the use of recreational drugs can lead to addiction. Here’s the danger of recreational drug use.
What is recreational drug use?
There’s a difference between someone who uses substances for fun and someone who’s addicted to substances. The difference between recreational drug use and substance abuse is based on how frequently it’s used, your level of dependence, how often you have cravings and the overall impact the substance has on your life. For example, if you enjoy a glass of alcohol every now and then, this is considered recreational use. However, needing to drink all the time is an example of substance abuse.
All drugs have side effects and popular substances such as alcohol, tobacco and cannabis (marijuana) can cause serious health complication in the long run.
Using substances often can even result in depression or anxiety because you can become dependent on them and struggle to complete everyday tasks without being under the influence.
Becoming dependent or addicted to a substance can become an expensive habit to maintain. If you find yourself stealing to get money to buy alcohol or drugs, then you may need to consider getting help.
Giving in to peer pressure
Peer pressure from friends can impact decisions we make. The desire to be accepted by our friends without thinking of the risks can make you start using drugs or drinking alcohol recreationally, which can then lead to substance abuse over time. Remember that friends who genuinely care about you won’t pressure or force you to do anything you’re not comfortable with.
Seeking help is a process and sometimes talking to someone you trust is the first step. The signs might not be obvious in the beginning as alcohol and drug use affects us all in different ways. It’s important to recognise the signs before it leads to an addiction.
If you find that you’re drinking or using a drug more often than usual, it may be time to reach out to someone you trust or get help by contacting the following organisations:
SADAG Substance abuse helpline on 0800 12 13 14. It’s available 24 hours, 7 days a week
Narcotics Anonymous on 0861 00 6962
Alcoholics Anonymous on 0861 435 722, also available 24 hours, 7 days a week
Addiction can happen to anyone and can be caused by lots of different reasons, but it usually starts off as recreational use. The important thing is to know the difference between recreational use and substance abuse so you can reach out for help if it becomes a cause for concern.
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