recreational drug
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Recreational drug use is the use of a
psychoactive drug A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive agent, or psychotropic drug, is a chemical substance that changes nervous system function and results in alterations in perception, mood (psychology), mood, consciousness, cognition, or behav ...
to induce an
altered state of consciousness An altered state of consciousness (ASC), also called altered state of mind or mind alteration, is any condition which is significantly different from a normal waking state. By 1892, the expression was in use in relation to hypnosis, though there ...
either for pleasure or for some other casual purpose or pastime by modifying the perceptions, feelings, and emotions of the user. When a psychoactive drug enters the user's body, it induces an intoxicating effect. Generally, recreational drugs are divided into three categories:
depressant A depressant, or central depressant, is a drug that lowers neurotransmission levels, which is to depress or reduce arousal or stimulation, in various areas of the brain. Depressants are also occasionally referred to as "downers" as they lower t ...
s (drugs that induce a feeling of relaxation and calmness);
stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as psychostimulants or colloquially as uppers) is an overarching term that covers many drug File:Aspirine macro shot.jpg, Uncoated aspirin Tablet (pharmacy), tablets, consisting of about 90% acetylsalicylic ...
s (drugs that induce a sense of energy and alertness); and
hallucinogen A hallucinogen is a psychoactive drug, psychoactive agent that often or ordinarily causes hallucinations, perception, perceptual anomalies, and other substantial subjective changes in thought, emotion, and consciousness that are not typically ex ...
s (drugs that induce perceptual distortions such as
hallucination A hallucination is a perception Perception (from the Latin ''perceptio'', meaning gathering or receiving) is the organization, identification, and interpretation of Sense, sensory information in order to represent and understand the pr ...

hallucination
). In popular practice, recreational drug use generally is a tolerated social behaviour, rather than perceived as the medical condition of
self-medication Self-medication is a human behavior Human behavior is the potential and expressed capacity ( mentally, physically, and socially) of human Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most populous and widespread species of primates, characterized b ...
. However, heavy use of some drugs is socially stigmatized. Many people also use prescribed and controlled depressants such as
opioids Opioids are substances that, when reaching opioid receptors, have effects similar to those of morphine. Medically they are primarily used for pain relief, including anesthesia. Other medical uses include suppression of diarrhea, replacement thera ...

opioids
, along with
opiates Opiate is a term classically used in pharmacology to mean a substance derived from opium. Opioid, a more modern term, is used to designate all substances, both natural and synthetic, that bind to opioid receptors in the brain (including antagonis ...
, and
benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines (BZD, BDZ, BZs), sometimes called "benzos", are a class of psychoactive drug A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive agent, or psychotropic drug, is a chemical substance that changes nervous system function and r ...
. Recreational drugs include
alcohol File:Alcohol general.svg, upright=0.8, The bond angle between a hydroxyl group (-OH) and a chain of carbon atoms (R) In chemistry, alcohol is an organic compound that carries at least one hydroxyl functional group (−OH) bound to a Saturated ...
, commonly found in
beer Beer is one of the oldest and most widely consumed alcoholic drink An alcoholic drink is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually ...
,
wine Wine is an alcoholic drink typically made from Fermentation in winemaking, fermented grapes. Yeast in winemaking, Yeast consumes the sugar in the grapes and converts it to ethanol and carbon dioxide, releasing heat in the process. Different v ...

wine
, and
distilled spirits Liquor or spirit (also distilled alcohol) is an alcoholic drink produced by distillation of grains, fruits, or vegetables that have already gone through alcoholic fermentation. The distillation process concentrates the liquid to increase its a ...
;
cannabis ''Cannabis'' () is a genus of flowering plants in the family Cannabaceae. The number of species within the genus is disputed. Three species may be recognized: ''Cannabis sativa'', ''Cannabis indica'', and ''Cannabis ruderalis''; ''C. ruderalis ...
and
hashish up1.5 grams pressed hashish Hashish ( ar, حشيش, ()), also known as hash, is a drug File:Aspirine macro shot.jpg, Uncoated aspirin Tablet (pharmacy), tablets, consisting of about 90% acetylsalicylic acid, along with a minor amount of ine ...

hashish
(with legality of possession varying inter/intra-nationally);
nicotine Nicotine is a chiral alkaloid that is naturally produced in the nightshade family of plants (most predominantly in tobacco and '' Duboisia hopwoodii'') and is widely used recreationally as a stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as ...

nicotine
, commonly found in
tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the princip ...

tobacco
;
caffeine Caffeine is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant of the methylxanthine chemical classification, class. It is the world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug. Unlike many other psychoactive substances, it is legal and unregulated in near ...

caffeine
, commonly found in
coffee Coffee is a brewed drink prepared from roasted coffee beans, the seeds of berries from certain '' Coffea'' species. When coffee berries turn from green to bright red in color – indicating ripeness – they are picked, processed, ...
,
tea Tea is an aromatic beverage prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of '' Camellia sinensis'', an evergreen In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science Science (from ...

tea
,
soft drink A soft drink (see § Terminology for other names) is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), deforms (flows ...

soft drink
s,
prescription drugs A prescription drug (also prescription medication or prescription medicine) is a pharmaceutical drug A medication (also referred to as medicine, pharmaceutical drug, medicinal drug or simply drug) is a drug used to diagnose, cure, treat, ...

prescription drugs
; the
controlled substance A controlled substance is generally a drug or chemical A chemical substance is a form of matter having constant chemical composition and characteristic properties. Some references add that chemical substance cannot be separated into its const ...
s listed as controlled drugs in the
Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 is an international treaty A treaty is a formal legally binding written agreement between actors in international law. It is usually entered into by sovereign states and international organiz ...
(1961) and the
Convention on Psychotropic Substances The Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971 is a United Nations treaty A treaty is a formal legally binding written agreement between actors in international law. It is usually entered into by sovereign states and international orga ...
(1971) of the United Nations; and
cocoa CoCoA (Computations in Commutative Algebra) is a free computer algebra system developed by the University of Genova, Italy, used to compute with numbers and polynomials. The CoCoA Library (CoCoALib) is available under GNU General Public License. ...
, commonly found in
chocolate Chocolate is a preparation of roasted and ground cacao seeds that is made in the form of a liquid, paste, or in a block, which may also be used as a flavoring ingredient in other foods. The earliest signs of use are associated with Olmec si ...
. What controlled substances are considered generally unlawful to possess varies by country, but usually includes
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that is mainly used as a recreational drug use, recreational drug and less commonly as a second-line treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorde ...

methamphetamine
,
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
,
cocaine Cocaine (from , from , ultimately from Quechua Quechua may refer to: *Quechua people, several indigenous ethnic groups in South America, especially in Peru *Quechuan languages, a Native South American language family spoken primarily in t ...
,
LSD
LSD
,
psilocybin mushroom Psilocybin mushrooms, commonly known as magic mushrooms, mushrooms or shrooms, are a polyphyletic, informal group of mushroom, fungi that contain psilocybin which turns into psilocin upon ingestion. Biological genera containing psilocybin mushroom ...
s,
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
,
Lean Lean, leaning or LEAN may refer to: Business practices * Lean thinking, a business methodology adopted in various fields ** Lean construction, an adaption of lean manufacturing principles to the design and construction process ** Lean government, ...
, and
club drug Club drugs, also called rave drugs, or party drugs are a loosely defined category of recreational drugs which are associated with discothèques in the 1970s and nightclub A nightclub, music club, or simply club, is an entertainment mus ...
s. In 2015, it was estimated that about 5% of people worldwide aged 15 to 65 (158 million to 351 million) had used
controlled drugs Drug prohibition law is Prohibitionism, prohibition-based law by which governments prohibit, except under licence, the production, supply, and possession of many, but not all, substances which are recognized as drugs, and which corresponds to inte ...
at least once.


Reasons for use

Many researchers have explored the
etiology Etiology (pronounced ; alternatively: aetiology or ætiology) is the study of causation or origination. The word is derived from the Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), ...
of recreational drug use. Some of the most common theories are: genetics, personality type, psychological problems, self-medication, sex, age, instant gratification, basic human need, curiosity, rebelliousness, a sense of belonging to a group, family and attachment issues, history of trauma, failure at school or work, socioeconomic stressors, peer pressure, juvenile delinquency, availability, historical factors, or socio-cultural influences. There has not been agreement around any one single cause. Instead, experts tend to apply the
biopsychosocial model The biopsychosocial model is an interdisciplinary model that looks at the interconnection between biology, psychology, and Social, socio-environmental factors. The model specifically examines how these aspects play a role in topics ranging from hea ...
. Any number of these factors are likely to influence an individual's drug use as they are not
mutually exclusive In logic and probability theory, two events (or propositions) are mutually exclusive or disjoint if they cannot both occur at the same time. A clear example is the set of outcomes of a single coin toss, which can result in either heads or tails, ...
. Regardless of genetics, mental health, or traumatic experiences, social factors play a large role in exposure to and availability of certain types of drugs and patterns of drug use. According to addiction researcher Martin A. Plant, many people go through a period of self-redefinition before initiating recreational drug use. They tend to view using drugs as part of a general lifestyle that involves belonging to a subculture that they associate with heightened status and the challenging of social norms. Plant states: "From the user's point of view there are many positive reasons to become part of the milieu of drug taking. The reasons for drug use appear to have as much to do with needs for friendship, pleasure and status as they do with unhappiness or poverty. Becoming a drug taker, to many people, is a positive affirmation rather than a negative experience".


Evolution

Anthropological research has suggested that humans "may have evolved to counter-exploit plant
neurotoxin Neurotoxins are toxin A toxin is a harmful substance produced within living cells or organisms; synthetic toxicants created by artificial processes are thus excluded. The term was first used by organic chemist Ludwig Brieger (1849–1919), de ...
s". The ability to use botanical chemicals to serve the function of
endogenous Endogenous substances and processes are those that originate from within a system such as an organism, Tissue (biology), tissue, or Cell (biology), cell. Endogenous substances and processes contrast with exogenous ones, such as Drug, drugs, which ...
neurotransmitter A neurotransmitter is a signaling molecule In biology, cell signaling (cell signalling in British English), or cell-cell communication, governs the basic activities of cells and coordinates multiple-cell actions. A signal is an entity that ...
s may have improved survival rates, conferring an evolutionary advantage. A typically restrictive prehistoric diet may have emphasised the apparent benefit of consuming
psychoactive drug A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive agent, or psychotropic drug, is a chemical substance that changes nervous system function and results in alterations in perception, mood (psychology), mood, consciousness, cognition, or behav ...
s, which had themselves evolved to imitate neurotransmitters. Chemical–ecological adaptations, and the genetics of
hepatic The liver is an organ only found in vertebrates which detoxifies various metabolites, synthesizes proteins and produces biochemicals necessary for digestion and growth. In humans, it is located in the right upper quadrant of the abdomen Th ...
enzymes Enzymes () are protein Proteins are large biomolecules or macromolecules that are comprised of one or more long chains of amino acid residue (biochemistry), residues. Proteins perform a vast array of functions within organisms, including E ...
, particularly
cytochrome P450 Cytochromes P450 (CYPs) are a superfamily of enzyme Enzymes () are proteins that act as biological catalysts (biocatalysts). Catalysts accelerate chemical reactions. The molecules upon which enzymes may act are called substrate (chemistry), ...
, have led researchers to propose that "humans have shared a co-evolutionary relationship with
psychotropic A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, or psychotropic drug is a chemical substance that changes nervous system In Biology, biology, the nervous system is a Complex system, highly complex part of an animal that coordinates its Behavior, ...
plant substances that is millions of years old."


Health risks

200px, This 1914 photo shows intoxicated men at a sobering-up room Severity and type of risks that come with recreational drug use vary widely with the drug in question and the amount being used. There are many factors in the environment and within the user that interact with each drug differently. Overall, some studies suggest that alcohol is one of the most dangerous of all recreational drugs; only
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
,
crack cocaine Crack cocaine, also known simply as crack or rock, is a free base form of cocaine Cocaine, also known as coke, is a tropane alkaloid and strong (SNDRI) stimulant made from Coca, coca leaves. It is most frequently used as a recreational d ...
, and
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that is mainly used as a recreational drug use, recreational drug and less commonly as a second-line treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorde ...

methamphetamine
are judged to be more harmful.
Alcoholic drink An alcoholic drink is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), deforms (flows) under an applied shear stress, o ...
s,
tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the princip ...
and other
nicotine Nicotine is a chiral alkaloid that is naturally produced in the nightshade family of plants (most predominantly in tobacco and '' Duboisia hopwoodii'') and is widely used recreationally as a stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as ...

nicotine
products, and
cannabis ''Cannabis'' () is a genus of flowering plants in the family Cannabaceae. The number of species within the genus is disputed. Three species may be recognized: ''Cannabis sativa'', ''Cannabis indica'', and ''Cannabis ruderalis''; ''C. ruderalis ...
are regarded by various
medical professionals A health professional (or healthcare professional) may provide health care treatment and advice based on formal training and experience. The field includes those who work as a physician, surgeon, physician assistant, pharmacist, pharmacy technician, ...
to be the most common and widespread
gateway drugsThe gateway drug effect (alternatively, stepping-stone theory, escalation hypothesis, or progression hypothesis) is a comprehensive catchphrase for the often observed effect that the use of a psychoactive drug, psychoactive substance is coupled to an ...
. In the
United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Contiguous United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., federal di ...

United States
,
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, smal ...

Australia
, and
New Zealand New Zealand ( mi, Aotearoa ) is an island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. It consists of two main landmasses—the North Island () and the South Island ()—and more than 700 List of islands of New Zealand, smaller islands, coveri ...

New Zealand
, the general onset of
drinking alcohol Alcohol, sometimes referred to by the chemical name ''ethanol Ethanol (also called ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol, drinking alcohol, or simply alcohol) is an organic chemical compound. It is a simple alcohol File:Alcohol general.svg, ...
,
tobacco smoking Tobacco smoking is the practice of burning tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of cla ...

tobacco smoking
,
cannabis smoking Cannabis smoking (or colloquially Colloquialism or colloquial language is the style (sociolinguistics), linguistic style used for casual (informal) communication. It is the most common functional style of speech, the idiom normally employed i ...
, and consumption of multiple drugs among young people most frequently occurs during
adolescence Adolescence ()''Macmillan Dictionary for Students'' Macmillan, Pan Ltd. (1981), page 14, 456. Retrieved July 15, 2010. is a transitional stage of Developmental biology, physical and psychological Human development (biology), development that g ...
and within school settings (
middle school A middle school (also known as intermediate school, junior high school, or lower secondary school) is an educational stage Educational stages are subdivisions of formal learning Formal learning is education normally delivered by trained teac ...

middle school
and
secondary school A secondary school describes an institution that provides secondary education and also usually includes the building where this takes place. Some secondary schools provide both lower secondary education (age 12 to 15) and upper secondary educatio ...
). Scientific studies which focus on a low–moderate level of alcohol consumption, particularly of
red wine Red wine is a type of wine Wine is an alcoholic drink typically made from Fermentation in winemaking, fermented grapes. Yeast in winemaking, Yeast consumes the sugar in the grapes and converts it to ethanol and carbon dioxide, releasing h ...

red wine
, have concluded that there can be substantial health benefits from its use, such as decreased risk of
cardiovascular diseases Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a class of diseases that involve the heart The heart is a muscle, muscular Organ (anatomy), organ in most animals, which pumps blood through the blood vessels of the circulatory system. The pumped blood car ...
,
stroke A stroke is a disease, medical condition in which poor cerebral circulation, blood flow to the brain causes cell death. There are two main types of stroke: brain ischemia, ischemic, due to lack of blood flow, and intracranial hemorrhage, hemorrh ...

stroke
, and cognitive decline. This claim has been disputed. Researcher
David Nutt David John Nutt (born 16 April 1951) is an English neuropsychopharmacologist specialising in the research of drug File:Aspirine macro shot.jpg, Uncoated aspirin Tablet (pharmacy), tablets, consisting of about 90% acetylsalicylic acid, along ...
stated that these studies showing benefits for "moderate" alcohol consumption lacked control for the variable of what the subjects were drinking, beforehand. Experts in the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shortha ...

United Kingdom
have suggested that some psychoactive drugs that may be causing less harm to fewer users (although they are also used less frequently in the first place) include cannabis,
psilocybin mushroom Psilocybin mushrooms, commonly known as magic mushrooms, mushrooms or shrooms, are a polyphyletic, informal group of mushroom, fungi that contain psilocybin which turns into psilocin upon ingestion. Biological genera containing psilocybin mushroom ...
s, LSD, and
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
. However, these drugs are not without their own particular risks.


Drug harmfulness

Drug harmfulness is defined as the degree to which a
psychoactive drug A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive agent, or psychotropic drug, is a chemical substance that changes nervous system function and results in alterations in perception, mood (psychology), mood, consciousness, cognition, or behav ...
is harmful to a user and is measured in various ways, such as by addictiveness and the potential for physical harm. More harmful drugs are called "hard drugs", and less harmful drugs are called "soft drugs". The term "soft drug" is considered controversial by its critics as it may imply that soft drugs cause no or insignificant harm. File:HarmCausedByDrugsTable.svg, alt=A chart showing relative drug harm., A chart showing relative drug harm. File:Rational harm assessment of drugs radar plot.svg, A rational harm assessment of drugs File:Drug danger and dependence.svg, alt=A chart showing dependence potential versus safety ratio., An analysis of the dangers of drugs


Responsible use

The concept of "responsible drug use" is that a person can use drugs recreationally or otherwise with reduced or eliminated risk of negatively affecting other aspects of one's life or other people's lives. Advocates of this philosophy point to the many well-known artists and intellectuals who have used drugs, experimentally or otherwise, with few detrimental effects on their lives. Responsible drug use becomes problematic only when the use of the substance significantly interferes with the user's daily life. Responsible drug use advocates that users should not take drugs at the same time as activities such as driving, swimming, operating machinery, or other activities that are unsafe without a sober state. Responsible drug use is emphasized as a primary prevention technique in harm-reduction drug policies. Harm-reduction policies were popularized in the late 1980s, although they began in the 1970s counter-culture, when cartoons explaining responsible drug use and the consequences of irresponsible drug use were distributed to users. Another issue is that the illegality of drugs in itself also causes social and economic consequences for those using them—the drugs may be "cut" with adulterants and the purity varies wildly, making overdoses more likely—and legalization of drug production and distribution would reduce these and other dangers of illegal drug use. Harm reduction seeks to minimize the harm that can occur through the use of various drugs, whether legal (e.g., alcohol and nicotine), or illegal (e.g., heroin and cocaine). For example, people who take drugs intravenously (cocaine, heroin) can minimize harm to both themselves and members of the community through proper injecting technique, using new needles and syringes each time, and proper disposal of all injecting equipment.


Prevention

In efforts to curtail recreational drug use, governments worldwide introduced several laws prohibiting the possession of almost all varieties of recreational drugs during the 20th century. The West's " War on Drugs" however, is now facing increasing criticism. Evidence is insufficient to tell if behavioral interventions help prevent recreational drug use in children. One in four adolescents has used an illegal drug and one in ten of those adolescents who need addiction treatment get some type of care. School-based programs are the most commonly used method for drug use education; however, the success rates of these intervention programs is highly dependent on the commitment of participants, and is limited in general. Studies have also shown that home intervention is also effective in decreasing the appeal of drugs.


Demographics


Australia

Alcohol is the most widely used drug in
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, smal ...

Australia
. 86.2% of Australians aged 12 years and over have consumed alcohol at least once in their lifetime, compared to 34.8% of Australians aged 12 years and over who have used cannabis at least once in their lifetime.


United States

From the mid-19th century to the 1930s, American physicians prescribed ''
Cannabis sativa ''Cannabis sativa'' is an annual Herbaceous plant, herbaceous flowering plant indigenous to East Asia, Eastern Asia, but now of cosmopolitan distribution due to widespread cultivation. It has been cultivated throughout recorded history, used as a ...
'' as a
prescription drug A prescription drug (also prescription medication or prescription medicine) is a pharmaceutical drug A medication (also referred to as medicine, pharmaceutical drug, medicinal drug or simply drug) is a drug used to diagnose, cure, treat, ...
for various medical conditions. In the 1960s, the counterculture movement introduced the use of psychoactive drugs, including cannabis. Young adults and college students reported the recreational prevalence of cannabis, among other drugs, at 20-25% while the cultural mindset of using was open and curious. In 1969, the FBI reported that between the years 1966 and 1968, the number of arrests for marijuana possession, which had been outlawed throughout the United States under Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, had increased by 98%. Despite acknowledgement that drug use was greatly growing among America's youth during the late 1960s, surveys have suggested that only as much as 4% of the American population had ever smoked marijuana by 1969. By 1972, however, that number would increase to 12%. That number would then double by 1977. The Controlled Substances Act of 1970 classified marijuana along with
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
and as a
Schedule I drug The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is the statute establishing federal government of the United States, federal drug policy of the United States, U.S. drug policy under which the manufacture, importation, possession, use, and distribution of ce ...
, i.e., having the relatively highest abuse potential and no accepted medical use. Most marijuana at that time came from Mexico, but in 1975 the Mexican government agreed to eradicate the crop by spraying it with the herbicide paraquat, raising fears of toxic side effects. Colombia then became the main supplier. The "zero tolerance" climate of the Reagan and Bush administrations (1981–93) resulted in passage of strict laws and mandatory sentences for possession of marijuana and in heightened vigilance against smuggling at the southern borders. The " War on Drugs" thus brought with it a shift from reliance on imported supplies to domestic cultivation (particularly in Hawaii and California). Beginning in 1982, the Drug Enforcement Administration turned increased attention to marijuana farms in the United States, and there was a shift to the indoor growing of plants specially developed for small size and high yield. After over a decade of decreasing use, marijuana smoking began an upward trend once more in the early 1990s, especially among teenagers, but by the end of the decade this upswing had leveled off well below former peaks of use.


Society and culture

Many movements and organizations are advocating for or against the liberalization of the use of recreational drugs, most notably regarding the legalization of marijuana and cannabinoids for Medical cannabis, medical and/or recreational use. Subcultures have emerged among users of recreational drugs, as well as alternative lifestyles and social movements among those who abstain from them, such as teetotalism and "straight edge". Since the early 2000s, medical professionals have acknowledged and addressed the problem of the increasing consumption of alcoholic drinks and club drugs (such as
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
,
cocaine Cocaine (from , from , ultimately from Quechua Quechua may refer to: *Quechua people, several indigenous ethnic groups in South America, especially in Peru *Quechuan languages, a Native South American language family spoken primarily in t ...
, rohypnol, Gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid, GHB, ketamine, Phencyclidine, PCP, , and
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that is mainly used as a recreational drug use, recreational drug and less commonly as a second-line treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorde ...

methamphetamine
) associated with rave culture among adolescents and young adults in the Western world. Studies have shown that adolescents are more likely than young adults to use multiple drugs, and the consumption of club drugs is highly associated with the presence of criminal behaviors and recent alcohol abuse or Alcohol dependence, dependence. The prevalence of recreational drugs in human societies is widely reflected in fiction, entertainment, and the arts, subject to prevailing laws and social conventions. In video games, for example, drugs are portrayed in a variety of ways: including power-ups (
cocaine Cocaine (from , from , ultimately from Quechua Quechua may refer to: *Quechua people, several indigenous ethnic groups in South America, especially in Peru *Quechuan languages, a Native South American language family spoken primarily in t ...
gum replenishes stamina in ''Red Dead Redemption 2''), obstacles to be avoided (such as the Fuzzies in ''Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island'' that distort the player's view when accidentally consumed), items to be bought and sold for in-game currency (coke dealing is a big part of ''Scarface: The World Is Yours''). In 1997's ''Fallout (video game), Fallout'', drugs ("chems" in the game) can fill the role of any above mentioned.


Common recreational drugs

The following substances are commonly used recreationally: * Alcohol: Most drinking alcohol is ethanol, . Drinking alcohol creates Alcohol intoxication, intoxication, relaxation and lowered inhibitions. It is produced by the fermentation of sugars by yeasts to create
wine Wine is an alcoholic drink typically made from Fermentation in winemaking, fermented grapes. Yeast in winemaking, Yeast consumes the sugar in the grapes and converts it to ethanol and carbon dioxide, releasing heat in the process. Different v ...

wine
,
beer Beer is one of the oldest and most widely consumed alcoholic drink An alcoholic drink is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually ...
, and distilled liquor (e.g., vodka, rum, gin, etc.). In most areas of the world, it is legal for those over a certain age (18 in most countries). It is an International Agency for Research on Cancer, IARC List of IARC Group 1 carcinogens, Group 1 carcinogen and a teratogen. Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. * Amphetamines: Used recreationally to provide alertness and a sense of energy. Prescribed for ADHD, narcolepsy, depression and weight loss. A potent central nervous system
stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as psychostimulants or colloquially as uppers) is an overarching term that covers many drug File:Aspirine macro shot.jpg, Uncoated aspirin Tablet (pharmacy), tablets, consisting of about 90% acetylsalicylic ...
, in the 1940s and 50s
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that is mainly used as a recreational drug use, recreational drug and less commonly as a second-line treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorde ...

methamphetamine
was used by Axis and Allied troops in World War II, and, later on, other armies, and by Japanese factory workers. It increases muscle strength and fatigue resistance and improves reaction time. Methamphetamine use can be neurotoxic, which means it damages dopamine neurons. As a result of this brain damage, chronic use can lead to post acute withdrawal syndrome. * Caffeine: Often found in
coffee Coffee is a brewed drink prepared from roasted coffee beans, the seeds of berries from certain '' Coffea'' species. When coffee berries turn from green to bright red in color – indicating ripeness – they are picked, processed, ...
, black tea, energy drinks, some
soft drink A soft drink (see § Terminology for other names) is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), deforms (flows ...

soft drink
s (e.g., Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Mountain Dew, among others), and
chocolate Chocolate is a preparation of roasted and ground cacao seeds that is made in the form of a liquid, paste, or in a block, which may also be used as a flavoring ingredient in other foods. The earliest signs of use are associated with Olmec si ...
. It is the world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug, but has only mild dependence liability for long-term users. * Cannabis (drug), Cannabis: Its common forms include marijuana and
hashish up1.5 grams pressed hashish Hashish ( ar, حشيش, ()), also known as hash, is a drug File:Aspirine macro shot.jpg, Uncoated aspirin Tablet (pharmacy), tablets, consisting of about 90% acetylsalicylic acid, along with a minor amount of ine ...

hashish
, which are smoked or eaten. It contains at least 85 cannabinoids. The primary psychoactive component is THC, which mimics the neurotransmitter anandamide, named after the Hindu ''ananda'', "joy, bliss, delight". * Cocaine: It is available as a white powder, which is insufflated ("sniffed" into the nostrils) or converted into a solution with water and injected. A popular derivative,
crack cocaine Crack cocaine, also known simply as crack or rock, is a free base form of cocaine Cocaine, also known as coke, is a tropane alkaloid and strong (SNDRI) stimulant made from Coca, coca leaves. It is most frequently used as a recreational d ...
is typically smoked. When transformed into its freebase form, crack cocaine, crack, the cocaine vapour may be inhaled directly. This is thought to increase bioavailability, but has also been found to be toxic, due to the production of methylecgonidine during pyrolysis. *
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
: Commonly known as ecstasy, it is a common
club drug Club drugs, also called rave drugs, or party drugs are a loosely defined category of recreational drugs which are associated with discothèques in the 1970s and nightclub A nightclub, music club, or simply club, is an entertainment mus ...
in the rave scene. * Electronic cigarette: A large proportion of e-cigarette use is recreational. Most construction of electronic cigarettes#E-cigarette liquid, e-cigarette liquids contain
nicotine Nicotine is a chiral alkaloid that is naturally produced in the nightshade family of plants (most predominantly in tobacco and '' Duboisia hopwoodii'') and is widely used recreationally as a stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as ...

nicotine
, but the level of nicotine varies depending on user-preference and manufacturers. Nicotine is highly addictive, comparable to heroin or cocaine. E-cigarettes are being used to inhale MDMA, cocaine powder, crack cocaine, synthetic cathinones, mephedrone, α-PVP, synthetic cannabinoids, opioids, heroin, fentanyl, tryptamines, and ketamine. * Ketamine: An anesthetic used legally by paramedics and doctors in emergency situations for its dissociative and analgesic qualities and illegally in the
club drug Club drugs, also called rave drugs, or party drugs are a loosely defined category of recreational drugs which are associated with discothèques in the 1970s and nightclub A nightclub, music club, or simply club, is an entertainment mus ...
scene. * Purple drank, Lean: A liquid drug mixture made when mixing cough syrup, sweets, soft drinks and codeine. It originated in the 1990s in Houston. Ever since then, this drug usage has grown and is often used at parties and in the trap music scene. Many people would get a drowsy feeling when consuming this drug. * : A popular ergoline derivative, that was first Organic synthesis, synthesized in 1938 by Albert Hofmann. However, he failed to notice its psychedelic effects until 1943. In the 1950s, it was used in psychological therapy, and, covertly, by the CIA in Project MKULTRA, in which the drug was administered to unwitting US and Canadian citizens. It played a central role in 1960s 'counter-culture', and was banned in October 1968 by US President Lyndon B Johnson. * Nitrous oxide: legally used by dentists as an anxiolytic and anaesthetic, it is also used recreationally by users who obtain it from whipped cream canisters (whippets or whip-its) (see inhalant), as it causes perceptual effects, a "high" and at higher doses, hallucinations. * Opiates and
opioids Opioids are substances that, when reaching opioid receptors, have effects similar to those of morphine. Medically they are primarily used for pain relief, including anesthesia. Other medical uses include suppression of diarrhea, replacement thera ...

opioids
: Available by prescription for pain relief. Commonly used opioids include oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, fentanyl,
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
, methadone, and morphine. Opioids have a high potential for addiction and have the ability to induce severe physical Drug withdrawal, withdrawal symptoms upon cessation of frequent use. Heroin can be smoked, insufflated or turned into a solution with water and injected. Oxycodone/paracetamol, Percocet is a prescription opioid containing oxycodone and Paracetamol, acetaminophen. * Psilocybin mushrooms: This hallucinogenic drug was an important drug in the psychedelic drug, psychedelic scene. Until 1963, when it was chemically analysed by Albert Hofmann, it was completely unknown to modern science that ''Psilocybe semilanceata'' ("Liberty Cap", common throughout Europe) contains psilocybin, a hallucinogen previously identified only in species native to Mexico, Asia, and North America. * Tobacco: ''Nicotiana tabacum''. Nicotine is the key drug contained in tobacco leaves, which are either smoked, chewed or snuff (tobacco), snuffed. It contains nicotine, which crosses the blood–brain barrier in 10–20 seconds. It mimics the action of the
neurotransmitter A neurotransmitter is a signaling molecule In biology, cell signaling (cell signalling in British English), or cell-cell communication, governs the basic activities of cells and coordinates multiple-cell actions. A signal is an entity that ...
acetylcholine at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brain and the neuromuscular junction. The neuronal forms of the receptor are present both post-synapse, synaptically (involved in classical neurotransmission) and pre-synaptically, where they can influence the release of multiple neurotransmitters. * Tranquilizers: barbiturates,
benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines (BZD, BDZ, BZs), sometimes called "benzos", are a class of psychoactive drug A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive agent, or psychotropic drug, is a chemical substance that changes nervous system function and r ...
(e.g. alprazolam, diazepam, etc.)(commonly prescribed for anxiety disorders; known to cause dementia and post acute withdrawal syndrome) * "Bath salts (drug), Bath salts": slang term that generally refers to substituted cathinones such as Mephedrone and Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV), but not always * N,N-Dimethyltryptamine, DMT – primary ingredient in ayahuasca, can also be smoked in a crack pipe; briefly (c. 30 minutes) causes a "total loss of connection to external reality" * Peyote: This hallucinogen contains mescaline, native to southwestern Texas and Mexico * Salvia divinorum: This hallucinogenic Yucatán Peninsula, Mexican herb in the Lamiaceae, mint family; not considered recreational, most likely due to the nature of the hallucinations (legal in some jurisdictions) * Synthetic cannabis: "Spice", "K2", JWH-018, AM-2201 * Quaaludes: A popular club drug in the 1970s. No longer prescribed or manufactured in many countries but remains popular in South Africa.


Routes of administration

Drugs are often associated with a particular route of administration. Many drugs can be consumed in more than one way. For example, marijuana can be swallowed like food or smoked, and cocaine can be "sniffed" in the nostrils, injected, or, with various modifications, smoked. * inhalation: all intoxicative inhalants (see below) that are gases or solvent vapours that are inhaled through the trachea, as the name suggests * insufflation (medicine), insufflation: also known as "snorting", or "sniffing", this method involves the user placing a powder in the nostrils and breathing in through the nose, so that the drug is absorbed by the mucous membranes. Drugs that are "snorted", or "sniffed", include powdered amphetamines, cocaine, heroin, ketamine, MDMA, snuff tobacco * Subcutaneous injection: also known as Skin popping. Injection of drug into the third lowest layer of skin. * Intramuscular injection: injection of drug into a muscle. * intravenous injection (see also the article Drug injection): the user injects a solution of water and the drug into a vein, or less commonly, into the tissue. Drugs that are injected include morphine and heroin, less commonly other opioids. Stimulants like cocaine or methamphetamine may also be injected. In rare cases, users inject other drugs. * oral intake: caffeine, ethanol, cannabis edibles, psilocybin mushrooms, coca tea, poppy tea, laudanum, gamma-hydroxybutyrate, GHB, ecstasy pills with MDMA or various other substances (mainly stimulants and psychedelics), prescription and over-the-counter drugs (ADHD and narcolepsy medications, benzodiazepines, anxiolytics, sedatives, cough suppressants, morphine, codeine, opioids and others) * sublingual administration, sublingual: substances diffuse into the blood through Tissue (biology), tissues under the tongue. Many psychoactive drugs can be or have been specifically designed for sublingual administration, including barbiturates, benzodiazepines, opioid analgesics with poor gastrointestinal bioavailability, blotters, coca plant, coca leaves, some hallucinogens. This route of administration is activated when chewing some forms of smokeless tobacco (e.g. dipping tobacco, snus). * rectal (medicine), intrarectal: administering into the rectum, most water-soluble drugs can be used this way * smoking (see also the section below): tobacco, cannabis, opium, methamphetamine, crystal meth, phencyclidine,
crack cocaine Crack cocaine, also known simply as crack or rock, is a free base form of cocaine Cocaine, also known as coke, is a tropane alkaloid and strong (SNDRI) stimulant made from Coca, coca leaves. It is most frequently used as a recreational d ...
and heroin (diamorphine as freebase) known as chasing the dragon * transdermal patches with prescription drugs: e.g. methylphenidate (''Daytrana'') and fentanyl Many drugs are taken through various routes. Intravenous route is the most efficient, but also one of the most dangerous. Nasal, rectal, inhalation and smoking are safer. The oral route is one of the safest and most comfortable, but of little bioavailability.


Types


Depressants

Depressants are psychoactive drugs that temporarily diminish the function or activity of a specific part of the body or mind. Colloquially, depressants are known as "downers", and users generally take them to feel more relaxed and less tense. Examples of these kinds of effects may include anxiolysis, sedation, and hypotension. Depressants are widely used throughout the world as prescription medicines and as prohibition (drugs), illicit substances. When these are used, effects may include anxiolysis (reduction of anxiety), analgesia (pain relief), sedation, somnolence, cognitive/memory impairment, dissociation (psychology), dissociation, muscle relaxation, lowered blood pressure/heart rate, respiratory depression, anesthesia, and anticonvulsant effects. Depressants exert their effects through a number of different pharmacological mechanisms, the most prominent of which include potentiation of GABA or opioid activity, and inhibition of adrenergic, histamine or acetylcholine activity. Some are also capable of inducing feelings of euphoria. The most widely used depressant by far is alcohol (drug), alcohol (i.e. ethanol). Stimulants or "uppers", such as amphetamines or
cocaine Cocaine (from , from , ultimately from Quechua Quechua may refer to: *Quechua people, several indigenous ethnic groups in South America, especially in Peru *Quechuan languages, a Native South American language family spoken primarily in t ...
, which increase mental or physical function, have an opposite effect to depressants. Depressants, in particular alcohol, can precipitate Substance-induced psychosis, psychosis. A 2019 systematic review and meta-analysis by Murrie et al. found that the rate of transition from opioid, alcohol and sedative induced psychosis to schizophrenia was 12%, 10% and 9% respectively.


Antihistamines

Antihistamines (or "histamine antagonists") inhibit the release or action of histamine. "Antihistamine" can be used to describe any histamine antagonist, but the term is usually reserved for the H1 antagonist, classical antihistamines that act upon the histamine H1 receptor, H1 histamine receptor. Antihistamines are used as treatment for allergies. Allergies are caused by an excessive response of the body to allergens, such as the pollen released by grasses and trees. An allergic reaction causes release of histamine by the body. Other uses of antihistamines are to help with normal symptoms of insect stings even if there is no allergic reaction. Their recreational appeal exists mainly due to their anticholinergic properties, that induce anxiolysis and, in some cases such as diphenhydramine, chlorpheniramine, and orphenadrine, a characteristic euphoria at moderate doses. High dosages taken to induce recreational drug effects may lead to overdoses. Antihistamines are also consumed in combination with alcohol, particularly by youth who find it hard to obtain alcohol. The combination of the two drugs can cause intoxication with lower alcohol doses. Hallucinations and possibly delirium resembling the effects of Datura stramonium can result if the drug is taken in much higher than therapeutic doses. Antihistamines are widely available over the counter at drug stores (without a prescription), in the form of allergy medication and some cough medicines. They are sometimes used in combination with other substances such as alcohol. The most common unsupervised use of antihistamines in terms of volume and percentage of the total is perhaps in parallel to the medicinal use of some antihistamines to extend and intensify the effects of opioids and depressants. The most commonly used are hydroxyzine, mainly to extend a supply of other drugs, as in medical use, and the above-mentioned ethanolamine and alkylamine-class first-generation antihistamines, which are – once again as in the 1950s – the subject of medical research into their anti-depressant properties. For all of the above reasons, the use of medicinal scopolamine for recreational uses is also observed.


Analgesics

Analgesics (also known as "painkillers") are used to relieve pain (achieve wikt:analgesia, analgesia). The word ''analgesic'' derives from Greek "αν-" (''an-'', "without") and "άλγος" (''álgos'', "pain"). Analgesic drugs act in various ways on the peripheral nervous system, peripheral and central nervous system, central nervous systems; they include paracetamol (also known in the US as acetaminophen), the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as the salicylates (e.g. aspirin), and opioid drugs such as hydrocodone, codeine,
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
and oxycodone. Some further examples of the Brand, brand name prescription medication, prescription opiates and opioid analgesics that may be used recreationally include Vicodin, Lortab, Norco (hydrocodone), Avinza, Kapanol (morphine), Opana, Paramorphan (oxymorphone), Dilaudid, Palladone (hydromorphone), and OxyContin (oxycodone).


Tranquilizers

The following are examples of tranquilizers (gamma-Aminobutyric acid#GABAergic drugs, GABAergics): * Barbiturates * Benzodiazepines * Ethanol (drinking alcohol; ethyl alcohol) * Nonbenzodiazepines * Others ** carisoprodol (Soma) ** chloral hydrate ** diethyl ether ** ethchlorvynol (Placidyl; "jelly-bellies") ** gamma-butyrolactone (GBL, a prodrug to GHB) ** gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB; G; Xyrem; "Liquid Ecstasy", "Fantasy") ** glutethimide (Doriden) ** kava (from ''Piper methysticum''; contains kavalactones) ** ketamine, a phencyclidine (PCP) analog ** meprobamate (Miltown) ** methaqualone (Sopor, Mandrax; "Quaaludes") ** phenibut ** propofol (Diprivan), a general anesthetic ** theanine (found in ''Camellia sinensis'', the
tea Tea is an aromatic beverage prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of '' Camellia sinensis'', an evergreen In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science Science (from ...

tea
plant) ** Valerian (herb), valerian (from ''Valeriana officinalis'')


Stimulants

Stimulants, also known as "psychostimulants", induce euphoria with improvements in mental and physical function, such as enhanced alertness, wakefulness, and locomotion. Stimulants are also occasionally called "uppers". Depressants or "downers", which decrease mental or physical function, are in stark contrast to stimulants and are considered to be their functional opposites. Stimulants enhance the activity of the central nervous system, central and peripheral nervous systems. Common effects may include increased alertness, awareness, wakefulness, endurance, productivity, and motivation, arousal, animal locomotion, locomotion, heart rate, and blood pressure, and a diminished desire for food and sleep. Use of stimulants may cause the body to significantly reduce its production of endogenous compounds that fulfill similar functions. Once the effect of the ingested stimulant has worn off the user may feel depressed, lethargic, confused, and dysphoric. This is colloquially termed a "crash" and may promote reuse of the stimulant. Amphetamines are a significant cause of drug-induced psychosis. Importantly, a 2019 meta-analysis found that 22% of people with amphetamine-induced psychosis transition to a later diagnosis of schizophrenia. Examples of stimulants include: * Sympathomimetics (catecholaminergics)—e.g. amphetamine, methamphetamine, cocaine, methylphenidate, ephedrine, pseudoephedrine * Entactogens (serotonergics, primarily phenethylamines)—e.g.
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
(which is also an amphetamine) * Eugeroics, e.g. modafinil * Others ** arecoline (found in ''Areca catechu'') **
caffeine Caffeine is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant of the methylxanthine chemical classification, class. It is the world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug. Unlike many other psychoactive substances, it is legal and unregulated in near ...

caffeine
(found in ''Coffea, Coffea spp.'') **
nicotine Nicotine is a chiral alkaloid that is naturally produced in the nightshade family of plants (most predominantly in tobacco and '' Duboisia hopwoodii'') and is widely used recreationally as a stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as ...

nicotine
(found in ''Nicotiana, Nicotiana spp.'') ** rauwolscine (found in ''Rauvolfia serpentina'') ** yohimbine (Procomil; a tryptamine alkaloid found in ''Pausinystalia johimbe'')


Euphoriants

*Alcohol: "Euphoria, the feeling of well-being, has been reported during the early (10–15 min) phase of alcohol consumption" (e.g., beer, wine or spirits) *Catnip: Catnip contains a sedative known as nepetalactone that activates opioid receptors. In cats it elicits sniffing, licking, chewing, head shaking, rolling, and rubbing which are indicators of pleasure. In humans, however, catnip does not act as a euphoriant. *Cannabis: Tetrahydrocannabinol, the main psychoactive ingredient in this plant, can have sedative and euphoric properties. *Stimulants: "Psychomotor stimulants produce locomotor activity (the subject becomes hyperactive), euphoria, (often expressed by excessive talking and garrulous behaviour), and anorexia. The amphetamines are the best known drugs in this category..." *MDMA: The "euphoriant drugs such as
MDMA 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, E, or molly, is a psychoactive drug primarily used for Recreational drug use, recreational purposes. The desired effects include altered Sense, sensations, increased energy, ...

MDMA
('ecstasy') and MDEA ('eve')" are popular among young adults. MDMA "users experience short-term feelings of euphoria, rushes of energy and increased tactility" as well as interpersonal connectedness. *Opium: This "drug derived from the unripe seed-pods of the opium poppy…produces drowsiness and euphoria and reduces pain. Morphine and codeine are opium derivatives." Opioids have led to many deaths in the United States, particularly by causing respiratory depression.


Hallucinogens

Hallucinogens can be divided into three broad categories: psychedelic drug, psychedelics, dissociatives, and deliriants. They can cause subjective changes in perception, thought, emotion and consciousness. Unlike other psychoactive drugs such as stimulants and
opioids Opioids are substances that, when reaching opioid receptors, have effects similar to those of morphine. Medically they are primarily used for pain relief, including anesthesia. Other medical uses include suppression of diarrhea, replacement thera ...

opioids
, hallucinogens do not merely amplify familiar states of mind but also induce experiences that differ from those of ordinary consciousness, often compared to non-ordinary forms of consciousness such as trance, meditation, conversion experiences, and dreams. Psychedelics, dissociatives, and deliriants have a long worldwide history of use within medicinal and religious traditions. They are used in shamanic forms of ritual healing and divination, in initiation rites, and in the religious rituals of syncretistic movements such as União do Vegetal, Santo Daime, Temple of the True Inner Light, and the Native American Church. When used in religious practice, psychedelic drugs, as well as other substances like
tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the princip ...

tobacco
, are referred to as entheogens. Hallucinogen-induced psychosis occurs when psychosis persists despite no longer being intoxicated with the drug. It is estimated that 26% of people with hallucinogen-induced psychosis will transition to a diagnosis of schizophrenia. This percentage is less than the psychosis transition rate for cannabis (34%) but higher than that of amphetamines (22%). Starting in the mid-20th century, psychedelic drugs have been the object of extensive attention in the Western world. They have been and are being explored as potential therapeutic agents in treating clinical depression, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, alcoholism, and opioid addiction. Yet the most popular, and at the same time most stigmatized, use of psychedelics in Western culture has been associated with the search for direct religious experience, enhanced creativity, personal development, and "mind expansion". The use of psychedelic drugs was a major element of the 1960s counterculture, where it became associated with various social movements and a general atmosphere of rebellion and strife between generations. * Deliriants ** atropine (alkaloid found in plants of the family ''Solanaceae'', including Datura stramonium, datura, deadly nightshade, Hyoscyamus niger, henbane and Mandragora officinarum, mandrake) ** dimenhydrinate (Dramamine, an antihistamine) ** diphenhydramine (Benadryl, Unisom, Nytol) ** hyoscyamine (alkaloid also found in the Solanaceae) ** hyoscine hydrobromide (another Solanaceae alkaloid) ** myristicin (found in ''Myristica fragrans'' ("Nutmeg")) ** ibotenic acid (found in ''Amanita muscaria'' ("Fly Agaric"); prodrug to muscimol) ** muscimol (also found in ''Amanita muscaria'', a gamma-Aminobutyric acid#GABAergic drugs, GABAergic) * Dissociatives ** dextromethorphan (DXM; Robitussin, Delsym, etc.; "Dex", "Robo", "Cough Syrup", "DXM") *** ''"Triple C's, Coricidin, Skittles" refer to a potentially fatal formulation containing both dextromethorphan and chlorpheniramine.'' ** ketamine (K; Ketalar, Ketaset, Ketanest; "Ket", "Kit Kat", "Special-K", "Vitamin K", "Jet Fuel", "Horse Tranquilizer") ** methoxetamine (Mex, Mket, Mexi) ** phencyclidine (PCP; Sernyl; "Angel Dust", "Rocket Fuel", "Sherm", "Killer Weed", "Super Grass") ** nitrous oxide (N2O; "NOS", "Laughing Gas", "Whippets", "Balloons") * Psychedelic drug, Psychedelics ** Phenethylamines *** 2C-B ("Nexus", "Venus", "Eros", "Bees") *** 2C-E ("Eternity", "Hummingbird") *** 2C-I ("Infinity") *** 2C-T-2 ("Rosy") *** 2C-T-7 ("Blue Mystic", "Lucky 7") *** 2,5-dimethoxy-4-bromoamphetamine, DOB *** 4-chloro-2,5-dimethoxyamphetamine, DOC *** 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine, DOI *** 2,5-dimethoxy-4-methylamphetamine, DOM ("Serenity, Tranquility, and Peace" ("STP")) *** 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine, MDMA ("Ecstasy", "E", "Molly", "Mandy", "MD", "Crystal Love") *** mescaline (found in peyote, Peruvian torch cactus and San Pedro cactus) ** Tryptamines (including ergolines and lysergamides) *** 5-MeO-DiPT ("Foxy", "Foxy Methoxy") *** 5-MeO-DMT (found in various plants like chacruna, Mimosa tenuiflora, jurema, Anadenanthera colubrina, vilca, and yopo) *** alpha-methyltryptamine (αMT; Indopan; "Spirals") *** bufotenin (secreted by ''Bufo alvarius'', also found in various ''Amanita'' mushrooms) *** N,N-dimethyltryptamine (N,N-DMT; DMT; "Dimitri", "Disneyland", "Spice"; found in large amounts in Psychotria and in Diplopterys cabrerana, D. cabrerana) *** lysergic acid amide (LSA; ergine; found in morning glory and Hawaiian baby woodrose seeds) *** lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD; L; Delysid; "Acid", "Sid". "Cid", "Lucy", "Sidney", "Blotters", "Droppers", "Sugar Cubes") *** psilocin (found in psilocybin mushrooms) *** psilocybin (also found in psilocybin mushrooms; prodrug to psilocin) *** ibogaine (found in ''Tabernanthe iboga'' ("Iboga")) * Atypicals ** salvinorin A (found in ''Salvia divinorum'', a ''trans''-neoclerodane diterpenoid ("Diviner's Sage", "Lady Salvia", "Salvinorin"))


Inhalants

Inhalants are gases, aerosols, or solvents that are breathed in and absorbed through the lungs. While some "inhalant" drugs are used for List of medical inhalants, medical purposes, as in the case of nitrous oxide, a dental anesthetic, inhalants are used as recreational drugs for their intoxicating effect. Most inhalant drugs that are used non-medically are ingredients in household or industrial chemical products that are not intended to be concentrated and inhaled, including organic solvents (found in cleaning products, fast-drying glues, and nail polish removers), fuels (gasoline (petrol) and kerosene), and propellant gases such as Freon and compressed hydrofluorocarbons that are used in aerosol cans such as hairspray, whipped cream, and non-stick cooking spray. A small number of recreational inhalant drugs are pharmaceutical products that are used illicitly, such as anesthetics (ether and nitrous oxide) and volatile anti-angina pectoris, angina drugs (poppers, alkyl nitrites, poppers). The most serious inhalant abuse occurs among children and teens who "[...] live on the streets completely without family ties". Inhalant users inhale vapor or aerosol propellant gases using plastic bags held over the mouth or by breathing from a solvent-soaked rag or an open container. The effects of inhalants range from an alcohol-like intoxication and intense euphoria to vivid
hallucination A hallucination is a perception Perception (from the Latin ''perceptio'', meaning gathering or receiving) is the organization, identification, and interpretation of Sense, sensory information in order to represent and understand the pr ...

hallucination
s, depending on the substance and the dosage. Some inhalant users are injured due to the harmful effects of the solvents or gases, or due to other chemicals used in the products inhaled. As with any recreational drug, users can be injured due to dangerous behavior while they are intoxicated, such as driving under the influence. Computer cleaning dusters are dangerous to inhale, because the gases expand and cool rapidly upon being sprayed. In many cases, users have died from hypoxia (medical), hypoxia (lack of oxygen), pneumonia, cardiac failure or arrest, or aspiration of vomit. Examples include: * Chloroform * Ethyl chloride * Diethyl ether * Ethane and ethylene * Laughing gas (nitrous oxide) * Poppers (alkyl nitrites) * Solvents and propellants (including propane, butane, freon, gasoline, kerosene, toluene) and the Vapor, fumes of glues containing them


List of drugs which can be smoked

Plants: *
tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the princip ...

tobacco
* cannabis (drug), cannabis * salvia divinorum * opium * datura and other ''Solanaceae'' (formerly smoked to treat asthma) * possibly other plants (see the section below) Substances (also not necessarily psychoactive plants smoked within them): *
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that is mainly used as a recreational drug use, recreational drug and less commonly as a second-line treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorde ...

methamphetamine
*
crack cocaine Crack cocaine, also known simply as crack or rock, is a free base form of cocaine Cocaine, also known as coke, is a tropane alkaloid and strong (SNDRI) stimulant made from Coca, coca leaves. It is most frequently used as a recreational d ...
* black tar
heroin Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine and diamorphine among other names, is an opioid used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medical grade diamorphine is used as a pure hydrochloride salt which is distinguished from black tar ...

heroin
* phencyclidine (PCP) * synthetic cannabinoids (see also: synthetic cannabis) * dimethyltryptamine (DMT) * 5-MeO-DMT * Bufotenine * DiPT * Methaqualone * Ethanol (alcohol) * Ketamine * Heroin * many others, including some prescription drugs


List of psychoactive plants, fungi and animals

Minimally psychoactive plants which contain mainly caffeine and theobromine: *
coffee Coffee is a brewed drink prepared from roasted coffee beans, the seeds of berries from certain '' Coffea'' species. When coffee berries turn from green to bright red in color – indicating ripeness – they are picked, processed, ...
*
tea Tea is an aromatic beverage prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of '' Camellia sinensis'', an evergreen In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science Science (from ...

tea
(caffeine in tea is sometimes called theine) – also contains theanine * guarana (caffeine in guarana is sometimes called guaranine) * yerba mate (caffeine in yerba mate is sometimes called mateine) * Theobroma cacao, cocoa * Kola nut, kola Most known psychoactive plants: * cannabis: cannabinoids *
tobacco village in Xanthi, Greece Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the princip ...

tobacco
:
nicotine Nicotine is a chiral alkaloid that is naturally produced in the nightshade family of plants (most predominantly in tobacco and '' Duboisia hopwoodii'') and is widely used recreationally as a stimulant Stimulants (also often referred to as ...

nicotine
and beta-carboline alkaloids * coca: cocaine * opium poppy: morphine, codeine and other
opiates Opiate is a term classically used in pharmacology to mean a substance derived from opium. Opioid, a more modern term, is used to designate all substances, both natural and synthetic, that bind to opioid receptors in the brain (including antagonis ...
* salvia divinorum: salvinorin A * khat: cathine and cathinone * kava: kavalactones * nutmeg: myristicin and elemicin ''Solanaceae'' plants—contain atropine, hyoscyamine and scopolamine * datura * deadly nightshade Atropa belladonna * Hyoscyamus niger, henbane * Mandragora (genus), mandrake (''Mandragora'') * other ''Solanaceae'' Cacti with mescaline: * peyote * Peruvian torch cactus * San Pedro cactus Other plants: * kratom: mitragynine, mitraphylline, 7-hydroxymitragynine, raubasine and corynantheidine * Ephedra (plant), ephedra: ephedrine * damiana * ''Calea zacatechichi'' * ''Silene capensis'' * valerian (herb), valerian: valeriana, valerian (the chemical with the same name) * various plants like chacruna, Mimosa tenuiflora, jurema, Anadenanthera colubrina, vilca, and yopo – 5-MeO-DMT * Morning glory and Hawaiian Baby Woodrose – lysergic acid amide (LSA, ergine) * Ayahuasca (for DMT) * ''Tabernanthe iboga'' ("Iboga")—ibogaine * ''Areca catechu'' (see: betel and paan)—arecoline * ''Rauvolfia serpentina'': rauwolscine * yohimbe (''Pausinystalia johimbe''): yohimbine, corynantheidine * many others Fungi: * psilocybin mushrooms: psilocybin and psilocin * various ''Amanita'' mushrooms: muscimol * ''Amanita muscaria'': ibotenic acid and muscimol * Claviceps purpurea and other Clavicipitaceae: ergotamine (not psychoactive itself but used in synthesis of ) Psychoactive animals: * hallucinogenic fish * psychoactive toads: bufotenin, ''Bufo alvarius'' (Colorado River toad or Sonoran Desert toad) also contains 5-MeO-DMT


See also

* Counterfeit drug * Demand reduction * Designer drug * Drug discovery * Drug policy ** Drug checking ** Drug education ** Drug policy reform ** Prohibition of drugs * Effective dose (pharmacology) * Effects of cannabis * Gateway drug theory * Harm reduction * Illegal drug trade * LD50 * Over the counter drug * Pharmacology * Poly drug use * Psychedelic experience * Psychopharmacology * Purple drank * Recreational use of dextromethorphan * Recreational use of ketamine * Regulation of therapeutic goods * Toxicology


Drug-related literature

* ''Licit and Illicit Drugs'' * ''Marihuana: The First Twelve Thousand Years'' * ''Methland'' * ''Smoke and Mirrors: The War on Drugs and the Politics of Failure'' * ''The Doors of Perception'' * ''The Rhetoric of Drugs'' * ''This Is Your Country On Drugs''


References


Further reading

* * *


External links

* * * {{DEFAULTSORT:Recreational Drug Use Drug culture