Illegal, so-called hard drugs are synthetic or natural substances that are addictive and extremely detrimental to many aspects of human wellbeing and are therefore forbidden by law.
They are not allowed to be produced, distributed, used, or held in your possession in any way, unless you have official governmental or judicial authorisation to use it for medical or scientific purposes.
Illegal drugs can be classified in different ways; for example according to:
The most common method of classifying illegal drugs is to group them as either stimulants, depressants or hallucinogens, depending on the way they affect the central nervous system (CNS):
Stimulants: Drugs that speed up the activity of the CNS and elevates your mood, energy, focus and alertness. They mask exhaustion and keep you awake and over-active for an extended period of time.
Depressants (relaxants): Drugs that slow down the activity of the CNS and calm down the user. They have sedative or tranquilising effects that suppress anxiety, reduce insomnia, and alleviate seizures.
Hallucinogens (psychedelics): These drugs can cause you to see, hear or feel things that do not exist, or to perceive imagined things as reality. They can also make you more sensitive to light and sound.
Despite their apparently pleasant effects, all illegal drugs come with severe negative risks, such as intoxication and addiction, and subsequent physical, mental, social, environmental, financial, legal and relationship harm that significantly outweigh their perceived short-term benefits.
Examples of some popular drugs and their classifications include:
Note: Cannabis is currently being legalised in some areas where they were previously illegal, but there is controversy about the wisdom of this development, due to the risks associated with it.
Powerful, ruthless, sophisticated and immensely wealthy illegal drug cartels and syndicates have spread their tentacles all over the world. They use advanced technology, bribery, threats, blackmail and murder to advance their interests and to penetrate any potential market in the world.
Despite ongoing campaigns by governments and private entities to combat and spread awareness about illegal drugs, the illegal trade is flourishing, spurred on by greed and extreme profits. When a kingpin or gang is eliminated, there are always new ones eager to replace them.
People use drugs for various reasons, including:
Due to the high incidence of substance use disorder, the health industry is intensely active in the fields of research and development and have effective treatment modules in place to help people to recover from these disorders.