Is Alcohol Safer Than Other Drugs? Agape Drug & Alcohol Treatment

Educate your teenagers about drug use, so they get the real facts about the dangers of drug use. These strategies can be used with other strategies to reduce overdoses, such as strengthening prescription drug monitoring programs. Misusing alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs can have both immediate and long-term health effects. Collectively, all substances shown in red are classified as ‘illicit drugs’. In the map here we see the share of the population with a ‘substance use disorder’. Globally, just over 2% of the world were dependent on alcohol or an illicit drug. This chart is shown for the global total, but can be explored for any country or region using the “change country” toggle.

alcohol vs drugs

Teenagers with a family history of alcohol or drug abuse are particularly advised to abstain and not experiment. No one can predict for sure who will abuse or become dependent on drugs except to say the non-user never will. Neuroscience research shows that alcohol impairs the formation of new memories and learning, especially in the developing brain–and as college-aged students, your brains are still developing. Alcohol use can cause both short term and long-term problems for those who choose to use it.

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Additionally, some patients whose substance use is hazardous or harmful may not meet the criteria for substance abuse . Such patients still should be evaluated and considered for an intervention aimed at reducing their drinking or otherwise modifying their alcohol vs drugs behavior. According to a study released in 2010 by a group of British scientists, alcohol was rated the most harmful drug overall and almost three times as harmful as Cocaine or Tobacco. In comparison, ecstasy was only one eighth as harmful as alcohol.

What is the biggest factor in addiction?

  1. Genetics. Traits passed on by family members through genes play a significant role in the potential for future substance abuse.
  2. Environment. Environmental factors include lack of parental supervision in your childhood and teenage years and peer pressure.
  3. Mental Health.

More than half of those who die from alcohol or drug overdoses are younger than 50. We’re here 24/7 to help guide you or your loved on through rehab and recovery.

Injury Prevention

This section explores traditional and new medications available to treat alcohol and drug dependence. Volume 2 of the Project Combine monograph series provides additional information on medication management . For most patients, the most effective treatment approaches combine behavioral treatments (i.e., motivation enhancement therapy and cognitive-behavioral therapy ) and pharmacological treatments. MET seeks to motivate patients who are resistant to treatment, and CBT gives people the skills to reduce their drinking or to abstain from drinking. Behavioral therapy also is an important tool for helping patients comply with medication regimens . For more information on behavioral therapies, see Volume 1 of the Project Combine monograph series, listed in the resources section of this Alert.

  • Other substance use increases as the frequency of binge drinking increases.
  • In 2019, nearly half of drug overdose deaths involved more than one drug.
  • Not only do you have something in common with the other people around you, but there’s the mentality that if you do anything or say anything stupid, everyone will just think you had too many drinks or smoked too much weed.
  • Their target market is a group of people are sick and suffering.
  • Additionally, like the term “alcoholism,” addiction is so widely used in such different contexts that its meaning is imprecise and unclear .
  • Turn person on their side and do not give them coffee, ibuprofen, aspirin, or put them in a shower.

Perception and cognition are impaired and muscular coordination decreases. Chronic users of PCP may have memory problems and speech difficulties lasting 6 months to a year after prolonged daily use. High psychological dependence on the drug may result in taking large doses of PCP. Large doses produce convulsions, comas, and heart and lung failure.

Data sources

But a significant number of people die every year from directly from drug overdoses. ‘Substance use disorders’ are classified on the basis of drug dependency, as defined by the criteria in the WHO’s International Classification of Disease (ICD-10). 11.8 million deaths are attributed to substance use each year – we look at the this breakdown between direct deaths and indirect deaths from increased risk of various diseases and injury here. We see that premature deaths from smoking is the large contributor to this.

Alcohol is the drug of choice for the angry teenager because it frees them to behave aggressively. Some teens abuse prescription medicine to party and get high. Hallucinogens (ex. mushrooms, LSD) are also escape drugs, often used by young people who feel misunderstood and may long to escape to a more idealistic, kind world. Smoking cigarettes can be a form of rebellion to flaunt their independence and make their parents angry.


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