Many American view alcohol as one of the "good things" of life, while others advocate total abstinence. Although most Americans have a negative view of drugs such as heroin, they consider a drugs a benefit. Many people believe that consuming drugs or alcohol they will feel warm and relax but the use and abuse of other drugs affect nearly all American people directly. Moreover, some Americans began to warn about the dangers of addiction. To know how alcohol and drugs is dangerous, people need to understand the terms addiction, abuse, and alcoholic. A person who is dependent on alcohol is called an alcoholic. Secondly, abuse is defined as the improper use of alcohol and other drugs to degree that the consequence are defined as detrimental to user or to society. Addiction has been called a "brain disease" because continued abuse of a drug causes changes in bran function that drive the addict to compulsive seeking and use of the drugs.(Leshner 1998). There are different types of alcohol and drugs. All alcoholic beverages contain the same drug, ethyl alcohol or ethanol, but the proportion varies in different beverages. Also, there are five main types of nonalcoholic drugs such as Narcotics, Depressants, Stimulants, Hallucinogens, Cannabis. A small amount of alcohol can result in changes in an individual's mood and behavior, and as the concentration of alcohol in the blood increases, there are corresponding more serious effects. If the individual consumes alcohol with a little level, the individual's motor control is affected- hands, legs become clumsy. With a higher level, the emotional functions of the brain are impaired or will possibly die. In addition, people also are affected by drugs. If people use a drug overdose, their breath will be slow and shallow, increasing body temperature; they will feel cold, convulsion or even coma and death. Tobacco and alcohol is a kind of legal drug but they are two of the most deadly drugs in American society.
This website (http://www.uchicago.edu/commonsense/chart-d.html) will explain how drugs can affect our bodies.
The alcoholic and drugs addict may cause some problem about their health. We will examine alcohol and other drugs separately that effect on the physical health. Furthermore, the effect of drugs and alcohol do not stop there. They also cause some problem for society such as economy. The long-range effects of heavy drinking involve impairment of the major organs of the body; include heart, brain, and liver (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism 1975:13). Cirrhosis of liver, one of the more widely known effects of heavy drinking, is an occupational disease of alcoholic. Heavy drinking also may result in certain muscle diseased and tremors. The function of vital muscle, the heart, may be impaired by prolonged heavy drinking. In another way, alcohol can effect in undirected way. Alcohol abuse can lead to early death. In one year, there are more than 100,000 alcohol-related deaths, with an average 26 years of potential life lost per death (Centers for Disease Control 1990). About 20 percent of deaths involve transportation accidents, 17 percent involve suicide or homicide, 17 percent are from cirrhosis and liver damage, and 15 percent are due to alcohol-induced cancer. Other diseases and accident account for remainder. Moreover, the health problems include effects on the un-born children of pregnant women who drink. More than 50,000 babies are born each year with alcohol-related defects, and about a fourth of them are serious enough to be classified as the fetal alcohol syndrome. We have also seen that drug abuse is a widespread problem in society and that it affects all kinds of people. The physical harm resulting from the use of illegal drugs includes (U.S Department of Justice 1992:10) Comparing with alcohol-related deaths, each year about 400,000 deaths result from cigarette smoking, and