The Long Term Effects of Drug Use


In these dark times, the lure of drugs is stronger than ever.

Drugs can take hold of anyone. It’s a scary but realistic thought. When people extend their arms and reach out for something as ubiquitous as a beer, something is on the line.

Any drug can change your behavior. Once a threshold is broken, an excess can turn into an impending problem. The long term effects of drug use are permeant and concerning. In 2017, 19.7 million Americans battled a substance use disorder.

Long Term Effects of Drug Use

The U.S. spends $740 billion annually to cover crime, healthcare and lost work productivity costs due to the abuse of tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drugs. Read on to learn more about how drugs have a domino effect.


Discussing long term effects of drugs on the brain are crucial. Although different types of drugs affect the body in different ways, depression seems to hold on most drug users. When someone is consuming a lot of alcohol, for example, their central nervous system is slowed down.

Alcohol serves a form of a ‘depressant’ after all. The tricky part is that if taking in small quantities, depressants can cause short-term relaxation.

But when that consumption slowly increases, it can affect your concentration, coordination, and your ability to respond to situations. Continued drinking can, most times, result in long-term depression too. While the substance may temporarily relieve the symptoms, it worsens it in time.

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Physical Changes

Drug use can also put anyone in physical danger. Someone who is under the influence might risk falling victim to the following outcomes:

  • An accident (at home or a car)
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Organ malfunction (liver, pancreas, heart, brain)
  • Skin lesions
  • Needle marks and collapsed veins (due to injections)
  • Baldness
  • Addiction
  • Psychosis
  • Accidental overdose

Even legal drugs taken excessively can cause problems that can’t be easily undone. Narcotics or opioid painkillers, for example, can make people seek a more potent stimulant once their body becomes addicted to the legal drug.

Once someone is showing any of the symptoms above, it’s essential to contact a facility with effective addiction treatment programs.

Family Disruption

When it comes down to long term effects of drugs on the body, relationships play a crucial part. Someone’s addiction or dependency can take a toll on family members who are worried or go through the hardship of helping a loved one cope.

In the process of helping a family member or a close friend, one can lose time or money trying to take preventive action. The economic burden of addiction in the U.S. has been found to be more than twice that of any other neurological disease too.

Someone with a drug problem or a relative will have to cope with healthcare, legal fees, and other social costs that take a toll on household finances.

Taking Action

Dealing with long term effects of drug use is complicated. Even if there are measures that can be taken to soften the mental and physical suffering, the process is never an easy one.

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While some might get away with drug consumption without self-destructing, one individual never acts the same way as the last one. So, thinking twice before reaching out for a stimulant could negate long term consequences

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