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Sexual Behavior - Substance Abuse

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Substance abuse

People abuse substances such as drugs, alcohol, and tobacco for varied and complicated reasons, but it is clear that our society pays a significant cost. The toll for this abuse can be seen in our hospitals and emergency departments through direct damage to health by substance abuse and its link to physical trauma. Jails and prisons tally daily the strong connection between crime and drug dependence and abuse. Although use of some drugs such as cocaine has declined, use of other drugs such as heroin and "club drugs" has increased. Individuals with persistent substance misuse had more severe depression, more positive symptoms, poorer functional outcome and greater rates of relapse at 1 year than those who stopped and those who had never misused substances. There were no differences in outcome between people who had never misused substances and those who stopped misusing after presentation.

Cannabis use is more common in people with psychotic disorders compared with people without psychoses.1 This is perhaps surprising given the widely held clinical opinion that cannabis can cause deterioration or impair recovery from psychotic disorders.

One reason people with psychosis may use cannabis is that the perceived benefits such as a reduction in anxiety and increased sociability6,7 outweigh any perceived harmful consequences. However, it is also possible that the clinical impression of cannabis use resulting in a worse outcome in psychosis is confounded by other factors associated with poor prognosis such as alcohol or other illicit drug use.

A wide variety of outcome measures are used. The most frequent are clinical symptoms, hospitalization and mortality, and social/occupational functioning, marriage, social support and burden of care . Areas such as cognitive function, duration of untreated psychosis, quality of life and effect of medication have not been widely studied in low- and middle-income countries.

Use and abuse of substances such as cigarettes, alcohol, and illegal drugs may begin in childhood or the teen years. Certain risk factors may increase someone's likelihood to abuse substances.

Factors within a family that influence a child's early development have been shown to be related to increased risk of drug abuse. Such as, Chaotic home environment, Ineffective parenting, and Lack of nurturing and parental attachment. Factors related to a child's socialization outside the family may also increase risk of drug abuse. Such as, Inappropriately aggressive or shy behavior in the classroom, Poor social coping skills, Poor school performance, Association with a deviant peer group, or Perception of approval of drug use behavior.

Friends and family may be among the first to recognize the signs of substance abuse. Early recognition increases chances for successful treatment. Signs to watch for include the following: Giving



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