Altered State of Consciousness

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Substance abuse, also known as drug abuse, refers to a maladaptive pattern of use of a substance (drug) that is not considered dependent. Substance abuse/drug abuse is not limited to mood-altering or psycho-active drugs. Activity is also considered substance abuse when inappropriately used (as in the case of propofol and Michael Jackson's death, or steroids for performance enhancement in sports). Therefore, mood-altering and psychoactive substances are not the only drugs of abuse. Substance abuse often includes problems with impulse control and impulsivity Drug addiction is a state of periodic or chronic intoxication produced by the repeated consumption of a drug (natural or synthetic). Its characteristics include: (i) an overpowering desire or need (compulsion) to continue taking the drug and to obtain it by any means; (ii) a tendency to increase the dose; (iii) a psychic (psychological) and generally a physical dependence on the effects of the drug; and (iv) detrimental effects on the individual and on society. While these citations describe what an altered state of consciousness is they don’t describe the effects on the human body. Personally I experience altered states all the time being Bi-Polar. Mania makes one feel high and on top of everything. There is nothing you can’t do, especially sleep. I am in this cycle now and even though the high feels good I know that on its tails follows the low depressive state. Nothing feels right then. Nothing seems to quite fit and all you want to do is sleep and ignore the world. Drug induced euphoria is quite different and harmful in its own way. Taking drugs can get out of control so easily and something that was just a weekend buzz can become a daily habit that consumes your life. I personally tried treating my bi-polar disorder right after high school with marijuana. I was enrolled in college, but never went as I was too buzzed to care about it. All I did at that time was eat, sleep and smoke the drug. I lost my job,...
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