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Drug addiction is a chronic brain disease that causes compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences to the individual and society. Drug addiction affects millions of people around the world, causing physical, mental, social and economic problems. Drug addiction can be prevented and treated, but it requires awareness, education and support from family, friends and society.
According to a recent estimate, about 50 lakh people in India are addicted to drugs. Many of them start with tobacco or alcohol and gradually move on to more harmful substances like cannabis, heroin, cocaine or synthetic drugs. Drug addiction affects people of all ages, genders and backgrounds, but it is more prevalent among the youth. Many students fall prey to drug abuse due to peer pressure, curiosity, stress or lack of guidance. Once addicted, they face various challenges in their academic, personal and professional lives.
The theme of this year's World Anti-Drug Day is 'Better Knowledge for Better Care', which emphasizes the need for better understanding of the drug problem and its impact on individuals and society. The health minister of Kerala, Veena George, said that everyone should be aware of the dangers of drug abuse and its effects on personal and social well-being. She also said that drug abuse can be prevented by providing better knowledge and care to the affected people.
In Kerala, there are 19 de-addiction centres under the health department and 14 de-addiction centres under the joint initiative of health and excise departments. Besides, there are 291 clinics under the mental health programme that provide de-addiction treatment. The minister urged everyone to spread awareness against drug abuse
There are various strategies for preventing drug abuse and addiction. These include attending therapy and counseling sessions, taking prescribed medications, avoiding triggers, and engaging in creative activities. Prevention programs can also target structural change, such as enforcing existing laws and establishing curfews. Services like counseling and drug-free zones can also be helpful. Other strategies include promoting alcohol-free events, increasing prescription drug drop-off locations, and establishing smoke-free spaces.
Prevention strategies should also involve families, schools, and communities. Supportive workplaces, schools, and communities, drug-free and crime-free neighborhoods, and positive connections with friends and family are important factors for preventing drug abuse. Parents can play a vital role in substance abuse prevention by communicating with their children, monitoring their activities, setting clear rules and expectations, and providing guidance and support. Schools can provide education on the harmful effects of drugs, promote healthy lifestyles and coping skills, and create a safe and supportive environment for students. Communities can mobilize resources and stakeholders to address local drug problems, raise awareness, and provide access to treatment and recovery services.
The theme of this year's World Anti-Drug Day is 'Better Knowledge for Better Care', which emphasizes the need for better understanding of the drug problem and its impact on individuals and society. By increasing our knowledge of the causes, consequences, and solutions of drug abuse and addiction, we can improve our care for ourselves and others who are affected by this global challenge. We can also prevent more people from falling into the trap of drugs and help them live healthy and productive lives. aa16f39245