HIV/AIDS DRUGS AND ALCOHOL

What's in Your Cup?

 

Partying today is more than music, food and soda. Today parties are known as "Turn Ups" and "Kick Backs". The same concept but gone about in different ways. It's not like it was back in the 70's and 80's when sneaking into your parent's liquor cabinet was the excitement for the party. Today young adults and teenagers are using illicit drugs like marijuana and prescription medications like codeine and promethazine in order to get high.

What is Lean?

The turn up drugs for parties today include alcohol, illicit drugs like marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and prescription pain medications. Thanks to media and the hip hop industry a revamped drink once known as "Sizzurp" is now popular. The drink is called lean. Lean is an attractive drink that does not have any alcohol in it but does have promethazine mixed with codeine, sprite soda and jolly ranchers. The mixture of the promethazine and codeine give the liquid a purple color while the sprite and jolly ranchers make the drink tasteful and appealing. Individuals who have tried lean say that the drink tastes like jolly ranchers or Kool-Aid.

 

How does it make you feel?

When under the influence of lean, and individual may experience a euphoric feeling. This sensation comes from the codeine that has been added to the concoction. The promethazine causes an impairment of one's motor skills, lethargy, and extreme drowsiness. These effects can last up to six hours.

Side Effects

Just like any drug, you will experience some side effects. The side effects of lean include slow slurred speech, rough raspy voice, uncontrolled eye movement, loss of coordination and balance and it can slow down ones heart rate. The consequences of over dosing on lean can include death and seizures. Hip Hop mogul Lil Wayne has had many encounters with this powerful drug. In 2012 Lil Wayne was hospitalized because he had a series of seizures after consuming too much of the drug. He states that "It ain't that easy - feels like death in your stomach when you stop doing it. You gotta learn how to stop, you gotta go through detox."

Stay Conscious of your surrounding and party safely

A lot of times kids and young adults try different ways of getting high because they see celebrities trying these same substances and then advertising them on social media. Everyone want to talk about how fun it is but no one wants to talk about the consequences that come with this risky behavior.

There is nothing wrong with partying every now and then but it should be done in a safe manner. For example if you know that you are attending party where drugs will be present do not attend the party. The presentation of drugs could lead to many problems like violence, sexual assault, and drug overdose.

In terms of alcohol, if you are under the age of 21, you shouldn't be in the same room with alcohol. Alcohol consumed or distributed to anyone under the age of 21 is illegal. If you are over the age of 21 practice safe drinking with simple steps like setting a limit for how much alcohol you are going to consume. Make sure you have a designated driver to take you home safely, and make sure no one comes close to your cup. Open cups at parties are breeding grounds for date rape drugs like roofies. If you do leave your drink unattended throw it away.

 

What's the Tea about THC? The truth about Marijuana and its Hazardous Component

 

 

Marijuana has been the topic of discussion for the past couple of years. With states like Colorado, California and the nation's capital legalizing marijuana, it has led to the dissemination of false information regarding the safety of marijuana use. Here are a couple of facts that could help you stay informed about marijuana and its components.

 

So here's the REAL Tea!!

Marijuana is an herb that does indeed grow from the ground, just like tobacco that is used for the production of cigarettes. The argument for today's generation is that marijuana is safer than cigarettes because the chemicals that are in marijuana are natural and cannot harm the human body. This is a false accusation. What a lot of young people do not know concerning marijuana is that the chemical THC is just as addictive as the chemical Nicotine that is found in cigarettes.

What is THC? - THC or its scientific name, tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical in marijuana that makes a person feel "high".  This chemical is also confused with the chemical CBD or Cannabidiol that is extracted and used in medicinal marijuana. Unlike THC, CBD does not produce the high sensation that is found in nonmedical marijuana. In fact CBD is the non-psychoactive component in marijuana. CBD is used as an anti-inflammatory, anti-nausea, anti-convulsive and anti-seizure for people suffering from illnesses like cancer, HIV/AIDS, and epilepsy.

 

How does this hurt the human body?

The dangers associated with marijuana use include engaging in risky sexual behaviors like unprotected sex, participating in the experimentation of stronger drugs, and driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol. This does not include the medical consequences that are associated with marijuana use. When smoking marijuana, an individual will experience an increase in their heart rate, shortness of breath, and long term consequences like Schizophrenia and Bi-polar disorder. Marijuana slows down the brains thought process and impairs coordination and judgement.

 

 

How to avoid Marijuana Use!

As human beings we have a natural curiosity to try new things, especially when it comes to drugs and alcohol. But sometimes curiosity killed the cat. In order to stay drug free it requires discipline. This may sound difficult but it's easy as 1 2 3. The steps for remain drug free include:

  1. Just say no! The best way to stay drug free is to refuse to experiment with drugs. Experimentation can lead to addiction.

  2. Remember the reasons why you decided to stay drug free. Some of these reasons may include staying focused on academics or trying to find a new career opportunity.

  3. Surround yourself with positive influences. You are the company you keep and a healthy drug free environment is essential to remaining drug free. Make sure that your friends are drug free. This will decrease your chances of being tempted to use drugs and to break your sobriety if you are in recovery.

  4. Think long term. Think about the lifestyle you wish to live as you progress in life.

Get high on Life, not on drugs

 

Important tips on how to stay drug free:

1. "Say "No, Im good.": The best way to turn down drugs in social setting is to establish a firm position   

2. Don't lie: It better not to lie than make up an excuse  

3. Stand apart: People dont like followers, and there is no quicker way to make it clear that you  are a follower than to use a drug that they know you are only trying because you pressured them to do it. 

4. Know who your true friends are: If you friends don't respect your ability to live by your ability to live by your own standards, then those are not people you want to be friends with.

5. Invest in your future: Drugs get in the way of your ability to succeed. Alcohol is a factor in 28% of college dropouts. 

 

                                                               

                                                   

 

How Drugs leads to risky behaviors:

Drug abuse and addiction have been linked with HIV/AIDS since the beginning of the epidemic. Although injection drug use is well known in this regard, the role that non-injection drug abuse plays in the spread of HIV is less recognized. This is partly due to the addictive and intoxicating effects of many drugs, which can alter judgment and inhibition and lead people to engage in impulsive and unsafe behaviors.

Injection drug use. People typically associate drug abuse and HIV/AIDS with injection drug use and needle sharing. When injection drug users share "equipment"-such as needles, syringes, and other drug injection paraphernalia-HIV can be transmitted between users. Other infections-such as hepatitis C-can also be spread this way. Hepatitis C can cause liver disease and permanent liver damage.

Poor judgment and risky behavior. Drug abuse by any route (not just injection) can put a person at risk for getting HIV. Drug and alcohol intoxication affect judgment and can lead to unsafe sexual practices, which put people at risk for getting HIV or transmitting it to someone else.

 

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