What parents need to know about drugs – depressants

Pic - Drugs2Barbiturates (depressant)
Barbiturates are tablets or pills that are swallowed. They are referred to as Sleepers, Blue bombers, Downers, Goofballs and cause slurry speech, loss of balance, staggering or drowsiness. It can be highly addictive.

Benzodiazepines (depressant)
It is a sedative or tranquiliser prescribed by doctors for people who suffer from stress, anxiety and restlessness. It can also be prescribed to help people who do not sleep well. It is available in tablet, capsule or ampoule form. It can lead to psychological dependency on the drug.

Rohypnol (depressant)
Teenagers think that Rohypnol (also called Roofies, Forget-me pill or date rape drug) is safe because it comes in sealed packaging. (The reason why it is called the “date rape” drug is because when it is in your system you usually do not remember much about what happened to you while you were under the influence of the drug. It can be compared to suffering from temporary memory loss.)

The different drug categories:

Stimulants / “uppers”
Amphetamines, caffeine, nicotine, cocaine and crack temporarily lift up the mood, give energy and provide a sense of euphoria or “awakeness.”

Depressants / sedatives / “downers”  
Alcohol, inhalants, narcotics (codeine, morphine, methadone, heroin, opium), barbiturates (amytal, nembutal, seconal), benzodiazepines (valium) and rohypnol provide intense pleasure or a feeling of well-being, calmness, drowsiness, tranquilization or sleep.

Combination drugs
Here the effects of sedatives and stimulants are combined. These include ecstacy and GHB.


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