Drug addiction and dangerous drugs aren’t always what you immediately think of. Sure, your first thought might be dirty needles and heroin in a dark alley. But you might not think that the drugs at your local pharmacy or the ones legally in your home are that bad.
But just because something is legal doesn’t mean that it isn’t extremely dangerous. Legal drugs and legal ways to get high can be as dangerous as illegal drugs.
Keep reading to learn some of the most dangerous drugs that you can take. Some of them may surprise you.
If you’ve been paying even slight attention to the news in the past 10 years, you’ll have heard of the opioid epidemic sweeping the nation. While some opiates are illegal (heroin, opium) there are a number of legal opiates that you can get via a prescription.
Oxycodone, Vicodin, Morphine, and Codeine are all legal in the United States. They’re often prescribed as pain relievers by medical professionals, but their addictive quality is what makes them really dangerous.
Opioids are some of the most addictive drugs you can take. It’s easy to build up a tolerance to these drugs as well, which means you have to take increasing quantities to feel “high.” This can lead to dangerous overdoses and even death.
It’s estimated that more people die each year from opioids than from breast cancer.
This one might be one of the most shocking on this list because of the widespread use and normalization of drinking alcohol in our society. Who hasn’t joked about getting wasted during college or seen a show where teenage drinking is considered normal and cool?
But the fact is that alcohol is extremely addictive and has severe negative health effects. Alcohol use can severely impact brain health and growth, increase your cancer risk, increase your risk of heart issues, and can result in liver issues and disease.
This is especially scary considering almost 87% of all people over 18 admit to drinking alcohol at some point, with almost 30% of those people admitting to dangerous binge drinking.
Dextromethorphan, also known as DMX, is one of the main ingredients found in OTC cough medicine. This could be in the form of syrups, tablets, or pills.
While these are legal medicines that can be found in any pharmacy, people can abuse them to get a legal high.
DMX is a type of opioid, the dangers of which we already went over earlier in this article. And while these drugs are technically legal, abusing these drugs can lead to vomiting, nausea, seizures, and death.
Benzodiazepines include drugs like Valium, Xanax, and Klonopin are usually prescribed to patients to treat anxiety and panic attacks. They work by interacting with certain neurotransmitters in your brain to help reduce anxiety and promote feelings of calmness.
Unfortunately, people tend to become addicted to these drugs and abuse them to get the “high” feeling that comes when you take them. Like opiates, you can build up a tolerance to these drugs, which means you have to take increasingly high amounts in order to feel the effects and get high.
Overuse of these drugs can lead to:
- Muscle Spasms
- Extreme withdrawal
What makes benzos so dangerous is not only their addictive quality and the potential to die from an overdose but also the fact that you can die from benzo withdrawal.
Ambien is a legal prescription medication often used to help people sleep. These pills are highly addictive and can lead to a dependence on them in order to sleep.
A recent study showed that there are an estimated 507,000 deaths each year in the United States linked to sleeping pills like Ambien. They also found that the risk of death is increased even if you only take these pills every once in a while.
So while these pills are legal, they are some of the most dangerous drugs you can take: taking even fewer than 18 doses of it per year increases your risk of death by a factor of 3.5.
Paint and/or Glue Sniffing
This might seem like an old school method of getting high, but people still sniff or huff glue and/or paint in order to get a lightheaded and loopy type of high. The scary part with this is that these aren’t technically drugs: they’re things you can find in almost any garage, hardware store, or even school buildings that can get you high.
The fumes in paint and glue can be inhaled or huffed in order to feel high. Obviously, paint and glue are legal in the United States, but that doesn’t make this form of getting high safe in any sense of the word.
Kids as young as 12 will “use” these things as drugs in order to get high, with over half a million people doing it each year. While the “high” you get will make you feel loopy, dizzy, and “intoxicated” like alcohol, the dangerous side effects are bad for your health.
You could asphyxiate as well as damage your lungs, heart, brain, kidneys, and live. There’s also something called “Sudden Sniffing Death Syndrome” caused by inhaling these types of fumes. They’ll interact with your brain and heart and cause heart failure and sudden death.
Legal Drugs Aren’t Safe Drugs
We often think that the legality of a drug or an activity makes it safe. But when you remember that bungee jumping and skydiving are legal, it’s easy to understand how just because something is legal doesn’t mean it’s safe.
This is definitely true for legal drugs. These drugs that we went over in this article are all legal and can be used safely. But they can also be abused to get high, which can lead to dangerous side effects, addiction, and even death.
You don’t need to rely on these dangerous drugs in order to get high. There are so many legal highs that you can experience without the dangers of these drugs. Check out our website to learn more.