According to a 2010 survey conducted by a team of scientists, including David Knut, the UK’s Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs (ISCD) and former chief drug adviser to the British government, 20 different drugs were evaluated on a scale that was taken into account. Different harms caused by an individual drug.
Although heroin and crack cocaine were the second and third substances on the list, alcohol scored 72, claiming its place at the top and becoming the most dangerous drug.
Blaming extensive, long-term use?
“Alcohol can be seen as more harmful in the long run because it can cause systemic disorders such as cardiac, brain, diabetes and other abnormalities,” said Dr Venkatesh Babu, Consultant-Psychiatrist, Fortis Hospital Bangalore.
According to doctors, its widespread, long-term, long-term use makes it the most dangerous.
In addition, he said that it causes physical disturbance, as well as disruption of one’s own mental health as well as the mental health of others, which can lead to various other problems such as mental problems, mental disorders or secondary depression, panic. Attacks, sleep disturbances, etc.
However, he believes that all drugs have the potential to be dangerous or harmful to humans. “Understandably acutely dangerous or long-term harmful if the question is which is more dangerous,” he opined.
Dr Rinkesh Bansal, a senior consultant, gastroenterologist and hepatologist at Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurgaon, said, “Alcohol abuse is very common in India because it is a product that is easily available.
According to the National Health Portal of India, alcohol use is quite common in both rural and urban India, with prevalence rates varying from 23% to 74% among men and 24% to 48% among women in certain categories and communities.
Worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), harmful alcohol use causes 3 million deaths each year, with about 0.5 million deaths responsible for drug use.
Health effects of alcohol vs. substance abuse
“Alcohol abuse itself causes a lot of liver disease because it increases the amount of fat in the liver as well as it damages the liver’s mitochondria. Thus it damages the oxidative potential, which is harmful and effective. The liver,” Dr. Explained by Sharad Malhotra, Senior Consultant and HOD, Gastroenterology Hepatology and Therapeutic Endoscopy, Akash Healthcare, Dwarka.
As far as drug abuse is concerned, doctors have shared that substances like cocaine, heroin that are taken intravenously can enter the bloodstream directly and damage the liver and also shed light on diseases such as hepatitis B, C and HIV.
In addition, Dr. Bonsal shares that in the case of substance abuse, the mental health aspect of our health is affected, which can lead to feelings of dependence.
According to him, both alcohol abuse and substance abuse affect the brain, the nervous system and the functioning of the brain. These cause short-term memory loss, delirium, confusion, hallucinations, behavioral changes, and it is very difficult to break dependence or addiction.
The deadly complications of hepatitis and pancreatitis in the case of alcoholism cannot be ignored, Dr. Bonsal warns. “Even a few drops of alcohol can cause extensive internal damage while calming an addict (due to inflammation of the pancreas. Substance abuse manifests as an addiction that weakens the body, immunity and proper functioning of organs in the long run,” he explains.