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By clicking some of the links below, you will be leaving the Prevention Network site and entering other websites not associated with PN. We do find them useful and trustworthy. 

Other Drug Information

Substance Use Disorder is a brain disease characterized by persistent drug-seeking and/or drug-taking behaviors, effecting a person's physical, social, emotional, and/or occupational aspects of a person's life (Shariatirad et al., 2013; Volkow et al., 2011).

Prevention programs strengthen protective factors by addressing those most at risk with accurate information about drugs, articulate the potential consequences of misuse/abuse, and offer activities unrelated to using drugs. To find the right program for your community, check out SAMHSA's Resource Center.


       Substance use Tool


Common Narcotics:

Fentanyl, Heroin, Hydromorphone (Dilaudid®), Methadone, Morphine, Opium, Oxycodone (Tylox®, Percodan®, OxyContin®), U-47700

Possible Health Effects:

  • Sedation or sleepiness

  • Slowed breathing

  • Constipation

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Increased risk of infection

  • Greater sensitivity to pain

An opioid is a class of drugs chemically similar to alkaloids found in opium poppies. Historically, these drugs have been used for pain management, but have a high potential for abuse. 


Possible Health Effects:

  • Increased heart rate

  • Nausea

  • Intensified feelings and sensory experiences

  • Changes in sense of time (for example, time passing by slowly)

  • Increased blood pressure, breathing rate, or body temperature

  • Loss of appetite

  • Dry mouth

  • Sleep problems

  • Paranoia

  • Psychosis

A hallucinogen is a group of drugs that alter a person's perception, thoughts, and feelings. Hallucinations are sensations and visions that seem real, though are not. Hallucinogens are commonly found in plants such as mushrooms and cacti, or are man-made. 


Common Stimulants: 

Amphetamines (Adderall®, Concerta®, Dexedrine®, Focalin®, 

Metadate®, Methylin®, Ritalin®), Cocaine, Khat, Methamphetamine

Possible Health Effects:

  • Increase alertness

  • Increase attention

  • Increase blood pressure

  • Increase heart rate

  • Opened-up breathing passages

A stimulant is a drug used to increase activity in the Central Nervous System. This class of drugs can be in prescription or non-prescription form. These are sometimes prescribed for ADHD, sleep disorders, mood disorders, and asthma. These drugs are highly addictive.

Designer Drugs

Possible Health Effects:

  • Rapid heartbeat

  • Hypertension

  • Hyperthermia

  • Sweating

  • Headaches

  • Palpitations

  • Seizures

  • Paranoia, hallucinations, and delusions

These drugs are illicitly produced with the intent of developing substances that differ slightly from controlled substances in their chemical structure while retaining their pharmacological effects.  These substances are commonly known as designer drugs and fall under several drug categories.


Possible Health Effects:

  • Muscle relaxer

  • Slurred speech

  • Loss of motor coordination

  • Weakness, Headache, Lightheadedness

  • Low blood pressure

  • Slowed breathing

A depressant is a medication prescribed for sleep difficulties, anxiety disorders, muscle spasms, and to prevent seizures. These can be highly addictive drugs. People abuse depressants to feel euphoria or to relieve other drugs side effects.

Drugs of Concern

Possible Health Effects:

  • Slurred speech

  • Dizziness

  • Drowsiness

  • Headache

  • Liver problems

  • Lack of coordination

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Seizures

Even though some substances are not currently controlled by the Controlled Substances Act, they pose risks to individuals who abuse them.

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