Stimulants, or uppers as they are sometimes known, are substances which increase or stimulate bodily functions once introduced into the bloodstream. Uppers are found in a wide spectrum of substances. They can be found in coffee and tea as well as in cocaine and methamphetamines. The effects on the body from stimulants vary as widely as the types of stimulants themselves.
Negative Effects of Stimulants
The negative effects of stimulants can range from the seemingly harmless losses of appetite and/or sleep to the highly addictive nature of crack and crystal meth and other drugs of abuse. In the body, the cardiovascular system is highly affected by the introduction of stimulants because they increase both heart rate and blood pressure. A person’s pulmonary system can also be affected by an acute shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. Stimulants also have a significant impact on the psychological and mental functioning of many individuals. Heightened anxiety, hyperactivity, higher levels of stress, and even paranoia or hallucinations may be experienced by individuals who have ingested or injected an upper.
False Positive Effects of Stimulants
A falsely positive side effect of stimulants is an increase in energy and confidence. Such increases can indirectly result in an individual’s engagement in high risk behavior related to the use of other drugs and participation in unsafe sex. While people who use stimulants on a regular basis might believe the awareness, energy, or concentration they experience are benefits, the stimulant pushes the body to function at a level beyond what is normal, stable, and healthy. In order to visualize how a person’s body is affected, one might consider the analogy of driving a car. If a car is maintained properly and driven within the limits of its capability, the ability of the car to function will be maximized. However, if the car is improperly fueled or driven beyond the limits of its potential, the car’s life expectancy will be reduced. The human body is similar. If properly maintained and fueled, the body functions at its maximum potential and remains healthy. However, the addition of substances which unnecessarily strain the body will shorten its ability to operate within a healthy range.
Uppers, like all drugs, can be divided into one of two categories, legal and illegal. Many drugs, particularly uppers, are used as a way to achieve a higher level of awareness, concentration, or euphoria. While increasing one’s concentration may seem benign and harmless, one doesn’t immediately see the long term effects of stimulant exposure. Use can become abuse which can then become addiction such as Ritalin addiction in most children today diagnosed with ADHD.
With consistent consumption of a substance, the body develops tolerance. This means that the user must continually increase the amount of the substance taken in order to achieve the same effect. As a body builds tolerance, the brain’s ability to function on its own lessens while its dependence on the chemical increases. In other words, an individual’s body eventually depends on the substance in order to function. For example, a person who drinks coffee on a regular basis over an extended amount of time may experience a moderately painful headache if their morning coffee is skipped. Their body has become reliant upon the caffeinated stimulant which it is accustomed to ingesting.
For people who are strongly addicted to drugs such as alcohol and methamphetamines, quitting “cold turkey” can be extremely dangerous and even fatal because of the body’s strong reliance on the substance. In order to quit, many people need chemical and medicinal interventions in order to break the cycle of addiction safely. This is comparable to using a nicotine patch in order to stop smoking. The body has become reliant on the nicotine and smoking and is more easily weaned off the substance rather than having it stripped away. Nicotine addiction is extremely harmful to your health in order to live a long and happy life you are encouraged to contact a counselor today to learn the steps you need to take to start your recovery!
Detrimental Effect on Your Health
The inappropriate and prolonged use of any drug, including stimulants, can have a detrimental impact on the user’s physical and mental health. Knowing how stimulants negatively affect the human body can help people make informed decisions about the use of certain substances.