Amphetamine, dextroamphetamine, methamphetamine, and their various salts are collectively referred to as amphetamines. In fact, their chemical properties and actions are so similar that even experienced users have difficulty knowing which drug they have taken. Methamphetamine is the most commonly abused.Source: U.S. Department of Justice . Drug Enforcement Administration. Methamphetamine & AmphetaminesWashington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Retrieved
Definition for Analgesics
Analgesics are used to relieve pain. Some of these medicines are also used just before or during an operation to help the anesthetic work better. Codeine and hydrocodone are also used to relieve coughing. Methadone is also used to help some people control their dependence on heroin or other narcotics. Narcotic analgesics may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Narcotic analgesics act in the central nervous system (CNS) to relieve pain. Some of their side effects are also caused by actions in the CNS.
These medicines are available only with your medical doctor’s or dentist’s prescription. For some of them, prescriptions cannot be refilled and you must obtain a new prescription from your medical doctor or dentist each time you need the medicine. In addition, other rules and regulations may apply when methadone is used to treat narcotic dependence.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information.
Barbiturates fall under the depressant category, and are used medicinally to relieve anxiety, irritability, and tension. They have a high potential for abuse and development of tolerance. Depressants produce a state of intoxication similar to that of alcohol. When combined with alcohol, the effects are increased and risks are multiplied. Other drugs that fall under the depressant category include barbiturates, methaqualone, tranquilizers, chloral hydrate, and glutethimide.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information.
Club Drugs refers to a wide variety of drugs being used by young people at dance clubs, bars, and all-night dance parties (“trances” or “raves”). These parties are usually held in a clandestine location with high-volume music, high-tech entertainment, and easy access to drugs.
Club drugs are attractive to today’s youth because they are inexpensive and produce increased stamina and intoxicating highs. Because many of these drugs are colorless, tasteless, and odorless, they can be secretly added to beverages by individuals who want to intoxicate or sedate others.
The most widely used club drugs are; ecstasy, rohypnol, ketamine, GHB, and LSD.
Research has shown that club drugs can have long-lasting negative effects on the brain, especially on memory function and motor skills. When club drugs are combined with alcohol, the effect is intensified, and they become even more dangerous and potentially fatal.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, Prevention Alert: Club Drugs: A New Community Threat (Volume 3, Number 24 ed.) Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.
Cocaine is a powerfully addictive stimulant that directly affects the brain. Cocaine has been labeled the drug of the 1980s and ’90s, because of its extensive popularity and use during this period. However, cocaine is not a new drug. In fact, it is one of the oldest known drugs. The pure chemical, cocaine hydrochloride, has been an abused substance for more than 100 years, and coca leaves, the source of cocaine, have been ingested for thousands of years.
There are basically two chemical forms of cocaine: the hydrochloride salt and the “freebase.” The hydrochloride salt, or powdered form of cocaine, dissolves in water and, when abused, can be taken intravenously (by vein) or intranasally (in the nose). Freebase refers to a compound that has not been neutralized by an acid to make the hydrochloride salt. The freebase form of cocaine is smokable.
Cocaine is generally sold on the street as a fine, white, crystalline powder, known as “coke,” “C,” “snow,” “flake,” or “blow.” Street dealers generally dilute it with such inert substances as cornstarch, talcum powder, and/or sugar, or with such active drugs as procaine (a chemically-related local anesthetic) or with such other stimulants as amphetamines.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute on Drug Abuse, (2002, February 18), NIDA Research Report – Cocaine Abuse and Addiction (PHD813, NIH Publication No. 99-4342)Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office
Crack Cocaine is the street name given to the freebase form of cocaine that has been processed from the powdered cocaine hydrochloride form to a smokable substance. The term “crack” refers to the crackling sound heard when the mixture is smoked. Crack cocaine is processed with ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and water, and heated to remove the hydrochloride.
Because crack is smoked, the user experiences a high in less than 10 seconds. This rather immediate and euphoric effect is one of the reasons that crack became enormously popular in the mid 1980s. Another reason is that crack is inexpensive both to produce and to buy.
Depressants are drugs used medicinally to relieve anxiety, irritability, and tension. They have a high potential for abuse and development of tolerance. Depressants produce a state of intoxication similar to that of alcohol. When combined with alcohol, the effects are increased and risks are multiplied. Drugs that fall under the depressant category include barbiturates, methaqualone, tranquilizers, chloral hydrate, and glutethimide.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information.
Ecstasy, also known as MDMA (methylenedioxymethamphetamine), is a stimulant that combines the effects of amphetamines and hallucinogens. MDMA is a synthetic, psychoactive drug with both stimulant (amphetamine-like) and hallucinogenic (LSD-like) properties. Street names for MDMA include Ecstasy, Adam, XTC, hug, beans, and love drug. Its chemical structure (3-4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine, “MDMA”) is similar to methamphetamine, methylenedioxyamphetamine (MDA), and mescaline – other synthetic drugs known to cause brain damage.
MDMA also is neurotoxic. In addition, in high doses it can cause a sharp increase in body temperature (malignant hyperthermia) leading to muscle breakdown and kidney and cardiovascular system failure.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute on Drug Abuse, (2002, September 24). NIDA InfoFacts: MDMA (Ecstasy)Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office,
Gamma Hydroxy Butyrate (GHB)
In the 1980s, GHB was widely available over the counter in health food stores, and bodybuilders used it to lose fat and build muscle. GHB has been given nicknames such as Grievous Bodily Harm, G, Liquid Ecstasy, and Georgia Home Boy.
In 1990, the Food and Drug Administration banned the use of GHB except under the supervision of a physician because of reports of severe side effects, including euphoric and sedative effects similar to the effects experienced after taking Rohypnol (the “date rape” drug.) GHB also has been associated with sexual assaults in cities throughout the United States (NIDA, Infofax.) Despite the ban on use, GHB is created in clandestine laboratories, in a variety of forms, including clear liquid, white powder and tablet. Increasing use rates are being reported.
In 1998, the Denver Poison Control Center received 33 calls involving GHB, and almost half of these cases were considered life-threatening. (NIDA Infofax-Club Drugs, 2000.) Because it clears from the body relatively quickly, it is often difficult to detect when patients go to emergency rooms and other treatment facilities.Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, Prevention Alert: Club Drugs: GHB, an Anabolic Steroid (Volume 3, Number 27 ed.) Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.