Physical and Health Education

Drug use, misuse and abuse

A drug is any chemical substance used for curing, treatment, diagnosis or for preventing diseases. Drug can also be used to reduce weight and to relieve someone from any form of symptoms.

Meaning of Drug Use

This refers to the taking of medication for an intended purpose, in an appropriate amount, frequency, strength and proper manner.

However, it has been discovered that most people often divert from the original purpose for which drugs were meant.

Meaning of Drug Misuse

Drug misuse is the practice of using drugs for pleasure rather than for medical reasons. It is the use of drugs without medically valid prescription. Even when drugs are prescribed, they may be misused if not taken in the right quantity,  dosage and length of time.

Meaning of Drug Abuse

Drug abuse is the indiscriminate, deliberate, excessive and persistent taking of chemical substances for purpose other than medical effect on the drug taker’s mental, physical, social and emotional health e.g. (doping in sport)

Categories of Drugs

The categories of drug include the following:

  1. Stimulants
  2. Narcotics
  3. Tranquilizers
  4. Psychedelic or hallucinogens
  5. Depressants, sedatives or hypnotics.

Health Consequences of Drug Misuse and Abuse

When drugs are misused or abused, they have serious consequences on the user. Such consequences include:

  1. Damage to organs e.g. brain, kidney, liver etc. leading to psychosis, psychological problems, etc.
  2. Criminal tendencies.
  3. Sociopathic behaviours e.g. rape.
  4. Lying and stealing to buy drugs.
  5. Loss of job due to declining productivity.
  6. Reduced coordination and neuromuscular control.
  7. Development of high blood pressure.
  8. Impaired judgement, leading to accidents.
  9. Frustration Leading to suicide tendencies.
  10. Physical disability or death.

Prevention of Drug Abuse/Misuse Among Young People

Drug misuse and abuse among young people can be prevented through the following ways:

  1. Educating the public{awareness ,enlightening people} on dangers of using drugs.
  2. Government ban on proliferation{reproduce rapidly} and sale of drug.
  3. Banning sale of drugs near institution of learning.
  4. Investigating social relationships and sources of drugs when found.
  5. Placing a ban on sale of drugs to children.
  6. Informing the home about the child’s behaviour.
  7. Giving health talk and true life stories to students.
  8. Using reformed users as resource person.
  9. Taking students on visits to psychiatric and rehabilitation centres.
  10. Giving individual or group counselling.
  11. Encouraging alternatives to drugs; for example sports, games and athletics.
  12. Giving referrals to experts early enough.
  13. Radio jingles and adverts motivating against use of drugs.
  14. Treatment and rehabilitation.


  1. What is a drug?
  2. Mention the categories of drugs.
  3. List five health consequences drugs.
  4. Mention seven ways of preventing drug misuse and abuse.

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