THE EFFECT OF DRUG ABUSE AMONG SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS
The purpose of the study is to look into the effects of drug abuse, its applications on students in some selected secondary schools in Egor Local Government Area of Edo State. In the light of the above topic or subject matter, attempts were made to find out the drugs commonly abused by students and the reasons why they are abused. As a result, the following questions were asked as a basis for our finding.
- What is drug abuse?
- Why do you think children abuse drug?
- What are some of the effects of drug abuse on the user?
- How do drugs affect the performance of students in schools?
- As teachers and parents, what steps have you taken in controlling drug abuse?
Literature was reviewed on the topic using relevant authors such as textbooks, journals and newspapers etc. Questionnaires were also made to collect vital information about the research study. Based on the findings, it was gathered that students who abuse drug do it because of friends, to make them bold.
BACKGROUND OF STUDY
A drug can be defined as any chemical solid, liquid or amorphous substance derived from plants, animals or mineral resources which is applied externally or internally to cause some desirable effects.
Also, drug can be defined as a substance which by its chemical nature has an effect to open the body of higher nervous system (the mind) the effect of drug could be positive or negative.
POSITIVE EFFECTS OF DRUG
Drug when properly used or taking into a living organism, produces the desired result, and may modify one or more of its functional parts; it is usually prescribed by a medical practitioner. Such drugs or substances are either of vegetables, animals or mineral origin. They could be prepared for the human body that that produces the desired results into the treatment of diseases and ailment.
NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF DRUG (DRUG ABUSE)
The negative effect of drug is also referred to as drug abuse. Drug abuse is therefore defined as the excessive consumption of a drug by any individual. Drug abuse results when there is self injection or from the approved medical in a manner that deviates from the approved medical usage. Drug abuse is involved in the following:
- Excessive use of drugs and use of unprescribed drugs.
- Use of hard drugs.
Excessive use of drugs and use of unprescribed drugs
This is when an individual takes in drugs without following the current prescription of the doctor.
Use of hard drugs
Hard drugs are capable of affecting the state of the body or mind by either depressing or stimulating the central nervous system or producing other biochemical harm to the society at large.
According to Agwusike (1990), drug abuse is the use of drugs above the prescribed dosage and for the purpose other than for the original prescription.
Adi also defined drug abuse as self treatment of physical ailment which could result from ignorance. The society of doctors and pharmacists frowned at the uncontrollable ways and manners in which the drugs are sold to the public in our markets, and medical stores which are contributory factors to drug abuse. Uncivilized and developed nations, drugs other than those for common pain, cough and cold remedies are sold in a doctor’s prescription.
Drug abuse could be viewed from different perspectives depending on the focus under view. It could be described as a non medical use of drug, which may cause harm to the individual and the society. These could be drugs which do not conform to the society’s cultural norm of a society.
People generally misuse or abuse drugs because the substance alter the mode of behaviour of an individual. Over the years, the use of hard drugs like tobacco, sedatives, Indian hemp, cocoa leaves, alcohol, heroine, morphine, cocaine to mention but a few have drastically been on the increase especially in this part of the world (Africa). The dependence or addition, which is psychological, is characterized by the compulsion to take drugs on a continuous or periodic basis in order to experience its mental effect.
The history of drug abuse could also be traced to the urge of man wanting to have power to relieve tension, satisfy his needs obtained occasional release from problems and the need to find a cure to some ailments, all these have contributed to drug use and abuse. The use of drugs by man is as old as man himself. Man consumed the juices of opium poppies long before there were narcotics, such as morphine and heroine, man chewed cocoa leaf long before cocaine was extracted from both American cocoa plants. Man dried peyote castro long before they synthesized. Throughout recorded history, drug has been in use long before this medical and recreational intoxicating and self induced relief from psychic pain and emotion. The early history of drug is inseparable from the early history of medicine.
Most traditional drugs are always misused or abused because of lack of dosage to determine the quantity required by the users. The expiration period is never stated, substances that are today referred to as drugs originated from herbs and other natural chemicals, caffeine, which is the main ingredient in tea or coffee and nicotine as in tobacco or cigarette, is widely used as mind stimulant and tension relieving drugs. They are considered socially acceptable and used recreationally.
However, they produce dependence and are also known to cause harm. Other drugs, although are used medically for the treatment of one ailment or the other, may also cause problems for the individual. Examples of such drugs are psychoactive drugs or sedatives like valium and mogadon which are sleeping pills and pain killers which are medically prescribed but may be abuse thus causing dependence and harm.
CLASSIFICATION OF DRUGS
Drugs can be classified into the following viz;
- Stimulants such as tobacco, cocaine or coffee.
- Depressant such as alcohol and other substances of depressants such as heroine, morphine and opiates.
This kind of drug stimulates the nervous system of an individual to behave extraordinarily leading such individual to misbehave. The health implication is that the individual is acting on the influence of a cultivating factor such as tobacco, cocaine etc. Common incidence that happens around us today is on the influence of these stimulants and if care is not taken, could lead to mental disorder.
These are sleep inducing drugs. They are used to calm anxious and restless subjects. These are barbiturates and non barbiturates that are capable of producing some degree of depression of the central nervous system (CNS). They are the most dangerous drugs.
These are substances that produce a state of altered perception and other alteration of mood such as illusion, hallucination. Examples of these drugs are lysergic acid diethyl lamine (LSD) phylogibin (extracted from innobrowi) magaline. Drug abuse has caused great problem to humanity. A lot of damages have been done to human health as a result of drug use and abuse and these damages could be mental, physical, emotional and psychological so that it has in a long way reduce life span of man. There are also social problems associated with drug use and abuse. They include high rate of crime, deformity either physically or mentally and affect unborn children whose mothers abuse drugs when they are pregnant. It can even lead to high rate of infant mortality in unborn babies or pregnant mothers when giving birth to mongoloid children.
Great misfortunes have resulted as a result of drug abuse e.g. series of road accidents that have claimed lives of men. Drug addicts when severely under the influence of drugs walked along the street half naked and perpetual acts like rape, assassination and murders.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Drug abuse is a pandemic problem even on the increases in an alarming rate in Nigeria today. About two decades ago, incidence of drug trafficking in Nigeria was low and abuse was minimal, but today drug has destroyed and killed many people in the society. Students in our secondary schools are not left out in this act. In view of this, the research is embarked on to highlighting the i8lls of drug abuse.
Over the years, it has been observed that students from secondary schools in Egor local government area of Edo state are in the form of drug addiction or the other as well as being involved in drug abuse. This research is therefore designed to view immediate causes and health implication of drug abuse among students in some selected secondary schools in Egor.
The researcher hoped that this research work would help the teachers, school authorities and the society at large to minimize the use and effects of drugs in schools. Also, this study will encourage the government of Egor local government area to establish drug rehabilitation centres with the help of the ministry of health and drug inspection unit (DIU) to care for addicts.
PURPOSE OF STUDY
The purpose of this study is to highlight the causes of drug abuse among students in some selected secondary schools in Egor local government area of Edo state by random sampling thus by taking from the beginning, middle and deep end of the local government. Although the4rer are books, magazines, articles and newspapers reports on drug abuse, no in-depth research has been conducted on the incidence of drug abuse in students and to recommend appropriate solutions to if possible. The researcher intends to engage the following:
- Find out the main causes of drug abuse on students.
- Determine the effects of these drugs on the students.
- Find out the influence of drugs on the students and the effect of drug abuse on the society.
- Find out the reasons why students abuse drugs.
- Find out the overall effects of the abuse of drugs on the students.
This study might also stimulate the researcher into areas of drug education or some aspects of drug use and abuse among students.
OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
This study is aimed at investigating drug abuse and its health implication on students in secondary schools. The following therefore are some of the objectives at the end of the study.
- Students would be informed on the negative effects of drug use and abuse.
- Parents and teachers will be acquainted of their roles in curbing drug abuse from early childhood.
- More researchers will be encouraged to carryout research work on the causes of drug abuse and its remedy.
- Government will be able to make policies and laws that will prohibit the use of dangerous drugs.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The importance of this study is to provide resource materials for many that want to have deeper knowledge abou8t the causes, effect and control of drug abuse.
This research work will encourage organization like NAFDAC, NDLEA, health organizations like WHO, SHE and government parastatals to establish drug rehabilitation centres to help victims of drug abuse.
Moreso, the significance of this study is to outline its health implication amongst secondary school students, which will be centred on the following:
- To identify the causes of drug abuse among secondary school students.
- To help reduce the hazard of drug abuse to minimum and to enlighten the teachers on how to educate their students and the society at large.
- To reduce the incidence of rape among secondary school students.
- To alert the government on how to control the abuse of drugs since the short term and long term effects are disastrous.
The following are the basic assumptions made by the researcher.
- a)That the habit of addicting to drugs begins from the environment the child grew up in.
- b)Students who use drugs are prone to disease attack.
- c)Students use drugs and abuse them because they are easily available.
- d)Use of drugs can lead to psychosis and premature death.
In the course of carrying out this research work, the research will attempt to proffer solutions to the following questions.
- a)What are the classes of drugs?
- b)What drugs are commonly abused by students?
- c)Why do students use drugs?
- d)What are the causes of drug abuse?
- e)What are the health implications of drugs abuse?
In order to achieve a purposeful result in this research, it is necessary to declare the following statements.
- Students engage in drug abuse in an attempt to cope with the opposite sex.
- Most students abuse drugs in order to gain absolute self confidence amongst fellow students in class.
- Drug abuse among students results from influence from friends and peer group pressure.
- Students who abuse drugs are sure to suffer from mental, psychological and emotional problems.
SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study was carried out in some selected secondary schools in Egor local government area of Edo state. The schools covered for this research include: Uselu secondary school, Eghosa grammar school all in Edo state. These schools were selected because of their past and present records of drug abuse.