The Effects of Drug Abuse on Society
The drugs that are beneficial to humanity may also be the same drugs that are detrimental to mankind. It is of no argument that drugs are created to cure diseases and to alleviate human condition; however people may misuse over-the-counter drugs and this is called drug abuse. It has become a social problem because it has afflicted the family, the economy and the community.
Drug abuse can be a source of problem to the family. First, the treatment for drug abusers is expensive amounting to $ 4,700 annually and this can drain the family's financial resources because treatment may last for more than a year. In a study conducted by Barnard, she found out that parents of drug abusers experience health deterioration due to stress and that family relationship become strained. At risk also are the siblings who may follow the same path due to exposure to mind-altering substances. They may also manifest denial behaviors to cope with the problem. Clearly, the family members struggle from their experiences in living with someone who misuse drugs.
Aside from the family, drug abuse also affects another segment of society and that is the economy. Hyde and Setaro presented a startling figure of $110 billion a year for health and other disruptive social effects cost of drug abuse. When this amount can be used for the establishment of businesses and provide for more employment opportunities, it will boost the economy of a country. In addition, drug abusers may turn in poor quality work due to absences and inability to function normally, thus, affecting the overall output of businesses.
The wider community is also gravely affected by drug abuse. There are a number of HIV/AIDS cases due to injection drug use. In the United States alone, it accounted for one-third of the cases. Moreover, drug abuse has been associated with crime and violence. In Brazil, for example, drug abuse was identified as one of the causes of almost 30,000 homicides.
While drugs are envisioned to advance the welfare of the people, it can be a source of complicated social disarray if left uncontrolled. The government and other social groups should, therefore, strengthen their programs to curb this problem; otherwise, some drugs may become Pandora's Box.