Substance misuse is a far reaching issue which effects many people.
What substance misuse entails
While substance misuse sounds awfully dramatic and involving many well-known, addictive drugs, the reality is that this is a misconstrued view of substance misuse and what it defines. Numerous sorts of substances can be misused with potentially fatal effects on the body. While substance abuse is more commonly associated with alcohol and drugs, it is also prevalent for many items, a lot of which can easily be purchased in a large number of stores with little to no restrictions.
As examples of these, nail varnish remover is a substance open to misuse for those seeking to get a “head rush” and feel “high”. In a more medicinal direction, pain killing drugs which can be purchased in stores such as paracetamol and ibuprofen can be misused, either in terms of overdose individually or as part of a potentially lethal cocktail of substances.
People with seemingly good intentions can also misuse substances. Laxatives, for example, are an extremely common purchase amongst those with eating disorders or trying to lose weight quickly. Retailers of these products all have a collective responsibility to monitor who buys these products and in what volumes.
Why it happens
Substance misuse is often not a deliberate act, and is sometimes laden with the best of intentions. A teenager buying a cheap nail varnish remover to sniff with her friends in the park probably doesn’t initially realize what she’s doing wrong. It’s seen as a bit of fun however it’s only until something bad happens that the reality hits home, sometimes with tragic, life changing circumstances.
Numerous reasons could be offered for why people become involved in substance misuse. It may be down to peer pressure and “looking cool” in front of friends. Perhaps pressures of work or life in general make a person feel forced into seeking what they believe is a harmless release. Sometimes illness, such as eating disorders, will fuel substance misuse. Although ideally these issues would be dealt with so substance misuse does not become the way out, help is at hand for those wanting to deal with their own substance misuse.
Help at hand
Seeking help is often the most difficult aspect of a person’s substance misuse as this involves disclosure of their problem, sometimes to those close to them meaning there can be an element of fear, failure and shame attached. There are increasingly growing numbers of places for people to seek help for their addictions so they can be dealt with in a way most effective to each individual.