Failure of regulatory agencies in Nigeria have led to several drug abuse and addiction. The menace of fake drugs became prevalent in the last decade and the present situation is alarming in the West African sub-region, including Nigeria.
Drug abuse and addiction also called substance or chemical abuse, it is a disorder that is characterized by a destructive pattern of applying drugs thereby leading to significant problems or distress.
Drug abuse is the taking of drugs or a deliberate use of drugs for purposes other than its intended purpose without the supervision of a physician or a medical practitioner while drug addiction is the continuous uncontrolled, compulsive use of a drug not only to include intoxication but also to avoid the tortures of withdrawal. Despite the unrelenting effort of individuals, regulatory agencies, mass media and the government at different levels against drug abuse, the prevalent practice among Post-Primary school students, Tertiary Institution, teenagers and even adults in the community has not decreased but rather continued to increase geometrically.
Drug abuse and addiction have no single cause. However, it can be categorize to three stages such as; Biological factor; most substance abuse professionals recognize a genetic to the risk of drug addiction. another is psychological factor: this includes mood disorder, depression, anxiety, and personality disorder, while the last is social factor: this include gender, marital status, Lower Socio-Economic status. The effects of drug abuse and addiction our health is that, it causes aggressiveness , hopelessness, It causes bad digestion notably of vitamin B especially when taken on empty stomach, Impotence, It cause the blood vessels to dilate, Chest or lung pain, Frequent illness, It interferes with the power of judgment and poisons the higher brain and nerve centre, Frequent hangovers , It deadens the nervous system, It increase the heart beat and lot more.
Drug Addiction can be quite difficult to overcome so it first requires a positive attitude and determination from the person addicted. An assertive decision making is required of the person to be sure he or she really wants to overcome the drug addiction.
Developing a drug addiction isn’t a character flaw or a sign of weakness and it takes more than willpower to overcome the problem. Abusing illegal or certain prescription drugs can create changes in the brain, causing powerful cravings and a compulsion to use that make sobriety seem like an impossible goal. But recovery is never out of reach, no matter how hopeless the situation seems.
The following ways are the steps used to overcome drug addiction; Detoxification . Usually the first step is to purge the body of drugs and manage withdrawal symptoms.
Behavioral counselling is another way to overcome drug addiction. Individual, group, and/or family therapy can help one identify the root causes of the drug use, repair relationships, and learn healthier coping skills.
Medication may be used to manage withdrawal symptoms, prevent relapse, or treat any co-occurring mental health condition such as depression or anxiety.
Long-term follow-up can help to prevent relapse and maintain sobriety. This may include attending regular in-person support groups or online meetings to help keep recovery on track.
NDDG must be hinged on good infrastructure, regulations and technology with track and trace components such as serialization of each pack of product released into the Nigerian Pharmaceutical supply chain; where all players in the supply and value chain are locked in, creating transparency on what comes in and what goes out.
Government and their regulatory agencies should work with stakeholders on proffering safer alternatives to these drugs of abuse so as to prevent imminent underground and illicit trade on these opioids.