Why are drugs illegal for adults?

Underestimated Danger: Legal and Illegal Drugs

Status: 06/27/2018 10:06 am | archive
The drug commissioner Marlene Mortner warns against trivializing cannabis.

According to studies, one in four adult Germans has used illegal drugs at least once in their life. Cannabis is by far the most commonly used illegal substance. On the occasion of World Drugs Day on June 26, the federal government's drug commissioner, Marlene Mortler, and the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA) warned against playing down the so-called soft drug: Today's cannabis has "little with the comparatively weak drug from 20 years ago mean, "emphasized Mortler. The number of adolescents and young adults using cannabis has increased in recent years, according to a new survey.

New psychoactive substances are coming onto the market

The Federal Drug Commissioner is also worried about new psychoactive, synthetic substances that are coming onto the market, some called "designer drugs" or "legal highs". These substances, which seem harmless at first glance, usually contain narcotics or chemical agents with a similar effect. They are suspected of causing poisoning, circulatory failure or psychosis.

1,300 drug deaths per year

According to the BZgA, around 1,300 people die every year from illegal drugs such as heroin, cocaine and ecstasy. According to the German Central Office for Addiction Issues (DHS), the number of drug deaths has been increasing year after year since 2012. More than 300,000 people aged 18 to 64 are addicted to illicit drugs. But still not heroin, LSD or cocaine are responsible for most addiction problems in Germany, but legal drugs such as alcohol, tobacco and medication.

Alcohol abuse remains a major problem

Legal drugs such as alcohol, tobacco and medication are responsible for most addiction cases in Germany.

Even if the total consumption has decreased slightly: According to the DHS, more than three million people drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and 74,000 people die every year from alcohol consumption, often in combination with smoking. Under the motto "Know Your Limit", the BZgA offers information on the subject of alcohol on the Internet. There you will find interesting information about the effects of alcohol on the body, tips for parents and also a self-test in which you can take a close look at your own alcohol consumption.

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Cigarette consumption is on the rise again

The consumption of cigarettes increased again in 2016 compared to previous years: According to DHS, almost 76 billion cigarettes were smoked in 2016. 35 percent of men and 28 percent of women between the ages of 18 and 29 smoke, and 39 percent of men and 29 percent of women in the 30 to 39 age group smoke. One in eight Germans aged 14 and over has already tried e-cigarettes. Whether these are dangerous is still a matter of dispute. According to DHS, around 121,000 people died in 2013 as a result of smoking.

Here you can find help with addiction problems

The nationwide uniform "Addiction & Drugs Hotline" can be reached around the clock on (01805) 313 031. It offers telephone advice, help and information about drugs and addiction. The Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA) has set up an information phone for addiction prevention, which can be reached Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on (0221) 89 20 31. The BZgA offers a directory of addiction counseling centers in Germany on the Internet.

Drug addiction is underestimated

The subject of drug addiction is hardly noticed by the public. The DHS estimates that between 1.2 and 1.5 million people in Germany are dependent on tranquilizers and sleeping pills - mainly older people and mainly women. Another 300,000 to 400,000 people are reportedly dependent on other drugs.

Even harmless substances can be addictive

However, other, actually harmless substances and activities can also be addictive. Most people have something that they can no longer do without, such as chocolate, coffee, gambling, the internet or even shopping. While these things don't make you physically addicted, they do create a craving for more. Because certain areas are activated in the brain, which are known as the reward system. Physical, psychological and social factors play a role in the development of an addiction.

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Alcohol addiction can affect anyone

A cozy glass of wine after work quickly turns into whole bottles. Every year at least 73,000 people die in Germany as a result of alcohol abuse. more

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tagesschau24 | 06/26/2018 | 9:20 am