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boron
04-19-2010, 04:55 PM
How To Say Someone Is on Drugs?

I'm writing a health article with the above title and I'm looking for a first hand info about what have you noticed in someone starting with illegal drugs of any kind - changes in behaviour, body symptoms, relationships, other...So, early changes, unexpected, odd symptoms..also any encouraging experience how to help, react...

I have a medical faculty and I can make detailed online searches, so the techical part is not a problem for me.

shaldna
04-19-2010, 05:29 PM
Change of behaviour is usually the first sign. The person may be more moody, become withdrawn, erratic. They can start to withdraw from personal relationships, sometimes, depeding on the drug, they can become depressed, or violent.

In physical terms, weight loss is common with many drugs, poor complexion, hair will loose condtion.

CaroGirl
04-19-2010, 05:46 PM
Your title is...odd. It seems to reference phraseology, like what terms to use to relate that someone is on drugs, rather than signs or symptoms of drug use (which is, I think, what you mean). A better title is "Signs of Drug Use" or, to go with the type of phrasing you're using already, "How Tell That Someone is on Drugs."

Signs include changes in mood, appetite or sleep pattern; loss of interest in a pastime or hobby; secrecy or withdrawal from peers or family; changes in weight; red or watery eyes or pupils that are too small or too large for the level of lighting in a room.

boron
04-19-2010, 06:23 PM
Yes, I mean this: "How Tell That Someone Is on Drugs."

Like, what you, as a parent, friend...have noticed (by real experience)...in someone you know closely.

I'm well aware of all possible symptoms..in theory..., but would still like to hear what has happened to someone you know in reality, and you've been "there" at the time.

CaroGirl
04-19-2010, 06:25 PM
Yes, you're looking for signs rather than symptoms. Those are two different things.

boron
04-19-2010, 06:47 PM
I'm looking for symptoms: this is what is noticed by an affected person him/herself or by others. OK, less formally, I'm looking for observations...Signs, professionally speaking, are detected by a health professional. I'm well aware of possible signs.

Was just thinking someone has some little story.

CaroGirl
04-19-2010, 07:41 PM
I'm looking for symptoms: this is what is noticed by an affected person him/herself or by others. OK, less formally, I'm looking for observations...Signs, professionally speaking, are detected by a health professional. I'm well aware of possible signs.

Was just thinking someone has some little story.
Not quite:


A sign is objective evidence of disease; it is something that can be seen.
A symptom is subjective evidence of disease; it is a feeling people other than the patient cannot see/feel it. A headache is a symptom. Chest pain could be a symptom of an MI.


Signs can also be measured. Is the rash the same size as yesterday? Is there redness and swelling arround the IV site? Vital signs are signs.
Symptoms cannot be measured. The only way you know a patient is having a symptom is that they tell you verbally (I have a sore throat) or non verbally (grimacing during an exam).


A slightly different definition views signs as any indication of a medical condition that can be objectively observed (i.e., by someone other than the patient), whereas a symptom is merely any manifestation of a condition that is apparent to the patient (i.e., something consciously affecting the patient). From this definition, it can be said that an asymptomatic patient is uninhibited by disease. However, a doctor may discover the sign hypertension in an asymptomatic patient, who does not experience "dis-ease", and the sign indicates a disease state that poses a hazard to the patient. With this set of definitions, there is some overlap – certain things may qualify as both a sign and a symptom (e.g., a bloody nose).


I maintain you are looking for signs rather than symptoms. But I'm obviously not being helpful to you, despite having given you all the signs I've observed from personal experience. I'd rather not give an anecdote, as that's a bit too personal for me.

Caro - out.

SWest
04-19-2010, 08:23 PM
The person I know who got attached to pain prescriptions became uncharacteristically quiet and passive (he is usually ebullient and animated); his skin was bright red, eyes glassy.

Although he lives with a severe chronic pain condition (ruptured spinal cord disc + multiple unreparative surgeries), he was unconcerned about standing for long periods of time at functions...relaxed instead of stiff at the shoulders. Not shifting or fidgeting.

Someone who always was able to tell a long story at the top of his voice became someone who slurred and spoke in disjointed phrases. Only able to say, "Yeah, yeah," since he wasn't really following everything.

Like a weensie bit drunk all the time.

boron
04-19-2010, 09:34 PM
@ SWest, I appreciate this detailed, words-rich description.

Griesmeel
04-20-2010, 02:21 PM
I've seen a few people on cannabis. In general it makes them more easygoing, easily satisfied with life. They lose ambition in a big way, if they use on a regular basis qualified engineers end up working behind a garbage truck. The halftime of THC is pretty long, as much as 8 days I was told, so just a few joints a week will keep someone in that particular zone.

Cocaine users will have dilated pupils and constantly grind their teeth. If they keep using they end up losing their teeth but I'm not sure it's because of the grinding. They haunt the house at night and become a liability when addicted.

On XTC I noticed dilation of the pupils and tensioning the jaw muscles, making the jaw look particularly square.

I have seen a number of people on mushrooms but there was no big common denominator in outward signals. One guy just became really quiet and wanted to be by himself while another was going in circles over a field distracted by every little detail. Perception is changed a lot up to and including hallucinations but everyone seems to handle those differently. I was never worried about anyone jumping from a 5th floor window though. Also I believe mushrooms tend to be much less addictive and people keep excellent memory of the trip. (Anyone now interested do pleasepleaseplease be careful, only try this in a safe and familiar place and without any psychological baggage. Any worries in life? Don't! That 5th floor window is still possible.)

In general I have to note that behavior can have very personal overtones. Someone who is overly ambitious might actually benefit from a joint once in a while. :)

I'm no expert in any sense but I hope this helps as a leg-up.

shaldna
04-20-2010, 03:31 PM
I'm looking for symptoms: this is what is noticed by an affected person him/herself or by others. OK, less formally, I'm looking for observations...Signs, professionally speaking, are detected by a health professional. I'm well aware of possible signs.

.


Um....I think you have those mixed up.

Newyorkknicks07
04-20-2010, 09:10 PM
Well, everyone's different. And even on an individual basis, it varies. But from experience, Marijuana can cause:

- Severe drowsiness
- Dry-mouth (for lack of a better term)
- Delusional thinking
- Paranoia
- Euphoria
- Severe increase in appetite
- Anxiety
- Eyes are unable to fully open
- One eye may drift to the side while intoxicated
- Shortness of breath
- Sore throat

Those are the most common ones that i can think of off the top of my head. Hope it helped you.

boron
04-20-2010, 09:15 PM
Newyorkknicks,

severe drowsiness and severe increase in appetite even with "usual" (small) amount of marijuana?