Drugs in Society

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Drugs in Society
Assessment item 1
Learning Portfolio Part A
Lecturer:
NURS 12128

ABSTRACT
This portfolio will concentrate on volatile substance abuse and its effects on both users and society in general. It will show that volatile substance abuse (VSA) is little reported in the media in comparison to drugs such as heroin, cocaine or cannabis. In Australia, when reported, VSA is considered a problem among indigenous communities rather than urban youth. Various government initiatives have been trialled in attempts to curb the problem but these have had limited success. As the use of so called designer drugs such as ecstasy and underage drinking grab the headlines, VSA appears to be a forgotten and unfashionable problem from an earlier age. Volatile substance abuse will be shown as an insidious and dismaying indictment of society’s failure to protect victims of VSA, whether users or those innocents affected by such abuse. This portfolio will discuss the need for greater intervention, a consensual approach and more publicity for what is an international problem that can affect children as young as eight years old. Finally it will incorporate a personal viewpoint of firsthand experience with the effects of volatile substance abuse.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Abstract............................................................................................2 Part 1................................................................................................3 What is volatile substance abuse?.....................................................3 Media reporting................................................................................4 Is it an indigenous problem alone?....................................................6 A personal viewpoint........................................................................6 Government intervention.................................................................7 Health risks......................................................................................8 Conclusion to Part 1.........................................................................9 Part 2..............................................................................................10 References......................................................................................13 Appendix 1.....................................................................................15 Appendix 2.....................................................................................18 Appendix 3.....................................................................................20 Appendix 4.....................................................................................22 Appendix 5.....................................................................................23 Appendix 6.....................................................................................24 Appendix 7.....................................................................................25 Appendix 8.....................................................................................26

s.” PART 1
What is Volatile Substance Abuse.
Volatile substances, when inhaled through the mouth or nose can cause a person to feel “high” or intoxicated. Queensland Health describes those substances as including “petrol, lacquers, spray paints, glues, aerosols, paints and cleaning fluid (Queensland Government 2010). Abuse of those substances by deliberately inhaling can cause confusion, disorientation and death (Queensland Government 2010). In many cases children use solvents before they touch alcohol and tobacco (Cazzell 2009). VSA is not new, sometimes referred to as glue sniffing, solvent abuse or misuse, petrol or paint sniffing it has been around for about two hundred years. In the late 19th Century in America advertisements to try out the effects of ether were published. In the earlier half of that century laughing gas (Nitrous Oxide) parties used...
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