Drug abuse-Escaping reality or gateway to unhappiness?

A View from Young Advocate Maxwell Simbuwa


Young people often use drugs as an escape from depression or dissatisfaction. Most people tend to abuse drugs as a way of escaping reality when they are unhappy. Yet when they sober up, the realisation that nothing has changed leads to greater unhappiness and the reuse of drugs to have the temporary illusion of “not having problems.”

Drugs are any substances that alter the chemical functions of the body. Some drugs have short term effects, but most times drugs that are abused have very devastating effects. Drug abuse has an impact on the wellbeing of the user as well as people around them. Parents begin to worry about their children and may feel guilty, believing they failed to do their duty as parents. Friends are also often lost to drugs. This leads to a greater unhappiness in the family and community.   

At a national level, drug abuse causes many health issues and contributes to increase in crime. As users struggle to finance their addiction, they often turn to crime. Communities may see an increase in robbery, aggravated assaults and sometimes murder.  A lot of public funds are then spent on programmes to prevent and treat drug addictions. This takes away resources from other services. Internationally drug trafficking and money laundering are two major crimes which take a lot of resources to fight them.

Policy makers and stakeholders need to come together to work towards ending drug abuse. For the Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs) to be achieved NO ONE CAN BE LEFT BEHIND.  #TogetherWeCanEndDrugUse