Psychoactive drugs are chemical substances that affect the brain. These medications can affect out central nervous system and change the way we feel, act or percept things. Psychoactive drugs are used as medications, to treat different medical conditions, however, there are people using these drugs for recreational purposes. Abuse of these drugs is usually found in people wanting to experience euphoria or increased alertness, who are not aware of potential health consequences abuse can bring.
There are several groups of psychoactive medications, based upon the effects they have on the brain. These are depressants and stimulants of the central nervous system, and also hallucinogenic drugs. Stimulant psychoactive drugs stimulate your brain and depressants slow your brain down, while hallucinogens cause changes in your perception and provoke hallucinations.
Purpose of Psychoactive Drugs
Therapeutically speaking, psychoactive medications are used in various treatments. Some of these drugs can be useful in controlling severe body pains, in general anesthesia or as psychiatric drugs, as the therapy for emotional and mental disorders.
Scientists and doctors agree that prolonged use of these medications can cause addiction. Some of the psychoactive drugs, such as caffeine in tea and coffee, or nicotine can cause certain effects on the brain, but not so severe. However, other types of these drugs can provoke a state of trance and hallucinations, which might have very serious impact on your brain.
Effects of Psychoactive Drugs
Alcohol, cannabis, opiate medications and many other drugs belong to the group of depressants of central nervous system. In small doses, they work by slowing down the brain and provoking relaxation. They can also negatively affect your coordination and concentration. Large doses of depressants may be responsible for unwanted effects to your health, and may cause vomiting, unconsciousness or even lead to lethal consequences.
Stimulant psychoactive drugs speed up the way your brain works, causing you to feel energetic and charged. Caffeine, nicotine and ephedrine are known as mild stimulants, while ecstasy and cocaine are much stronger and more dangerous for your health. In some cases, these drugs can provoke over-stimulation of your brain and cause headaches, seizures, anxiety or panic attacks. Paranoid ideas and aggressions are also frequent in people abusing stimulants of the central nervous system.
There are so many of hallucinogens that one wouldn’t know where to start, but some of the well known hallucinogen drugs are marijuana, LSD and ketamine. These are also some of the most commonly abused substances worldwide. Effects of these drugs are hard to estimate, but people abusing them can experience anything from headaches, anxiety, panic attack, paranoia to euphoria. Hallucinogens can seriously damage your health, because they might lead to cardiac distress, renal failure or be fatal.