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Louisville Drug Rehabs

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Drug Addiction and Physical Health

Drug Addiction and Physical HealthThe possible physical effects of drug addiction are almost limitless. Drugs work on the body in different ways, but none are without dangers. Drugs may cause physical problems through their side effects, overdose effects, and withdrawal symptoms. They can also contribute to longer-term problems that are not immediately visible. But even with these problems Louisville addicts can recover with the right help.

Classes of Drugs and Associated Health Effects

The following are some common classes of drugs and some of their possible physical health effects on Louisville residents:

  • Stimulants speed up the central nervous system. Cocaine and methamphetamine are two commonly abused stimulants. Stimulants tend to amplify body processes, so body temperature, blood pressure and heart rate tend to rise. The heart rate may also become irregular, and some Louisville users face increased risk of heart attacks. Stimulants increase the risk of other serious medical conditions as well, such as seizures and stroke. Serious dental problems are also common in methamphetamine users.
  • Opiates are drugs derived from the opium poppy, like heroin and morphine. Opioids are their synthetic cousins, which are chemically similar. Many prescription pain-relievers are opioids. One of the most dangerous physical effects of opiates and opioids is that they depress breathing. Fatal overdoses are usually due to this effect. Combining these drugs with alcohol or certain other drugs, such as anti-anxiety medication, can increase the risk of fatal overdose for any Louisville addict.
  • Marijuana can raise users’ heart rates and lead to memory impairment. It can also lead to long-term cognitive problems. Other possible physical effects of marijuana are infertility and a weakened immune system.
  • There are a wide number of chemicals that can be “huffed,” and abused as inhalants. Although they have different properties, all of them are highly toxic and can lead to serious brain damage. Many effects, such as hearing loss, limb spasms, and bone marrow damage are thought to be irreversible.
  • A number of drugs are commonly known as “club drugs.” Many of these, such as ketamine and rohypnol, have long-term brain effects and can cause amnesia. MDMA can make it more difficult for the body to regulate temperature.

The Development of Drug Addiction

Different drugs have different specific mechanisms of action, but addiction to all of them develops in a similar way. The drug affects the body (often by raising the level of specific neurotransmitters) and the body reacts in an opposing way (often by decreasing the amount of natural neurotransmitters produced). As addiction develops and continues, the body grows more and more out of balance. When drug use is stopped, levels of certain feel-good neurotransmitters are often very low. This often leads to anhedonia, or the inability to feel pleasure. Many Louisville addicts struggle with this problem, which keeps them from getting clean.

Louisville Addiction Help

The brain and body can heal when drug use is stopped, but the process takes time, and help is generally needed to learn relapse prevention skills in the meantime. If you’re ready to reclaim your health and your life, give us a call and let us discuss treatment options with you. We can help Louisville residents find programs that meet specific needs, and we can even check insurance coverage at no cost or obligation. Our helpline is toll-free and we’re available 24 hours a day, so there’s no need to put it off. Call now.

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