The 5 Most Addictive Substances Known To Man

addictive substances

Addictive substances are measured not only by how they influence the human body, but their greater impact on society as a whole. While there are many habit forming substances in existence, the five substances below are the most addictive known to man and their consumption should be absolutely avoided.

Nicotine

The ironic thing about this substance is that it is perfectly legal in the U.S. Any adult can walk into a store and buy some cigarettes or tobacco. Despite this, studies show that the lungs of smokers will absorb nicotine rapidly and then transmit it to their brain each time they smoke. The labels on cigarette packaging also warn smokers of the dangers of using the product, as well as the adverse effects of second hand smoke, which has led to the practice being banned in many public places. Anyone still smoking or using nicotine products has no regard for their health whatsoever.

Cocaine

This substance is extracted from the South American Coca plant and over the last 4 decades has caused untold death and mayhem, not just in Latin America where literal wars have been fought over it, but in the U.S. where it has caused carnage due to overdoses and the violence which has resulted from street gangs fighting over territory where the drug was sold.

While cocaine usage and the violence associated with it have fallen since the 1980s and 1990s, the addictive properties of this drug are still among the most notorious. It directly influences the dopamine system of the brain, which stops neurons from switching off the signal, resulting in an activation of the reward pathways which is unnatural. In lab experiments animals which were given cocaine exhibited dopamine levels that were three times greater than usual, and the crack variant is considered to be one of the top three most destructive drugs in the world.

Heroin

This is the drug that is currently making headlines in the U.S., surpassing both cocaine and other substances. It is derived from morphine which is itself taken from the opium poppy. When taken heroin will enter your brain with max speed and bind to receptors of opioids, especially any which are responsible for pleasure, pain, sleeping or breathing. The consequences of its use are truly dire.

Barbiturates

Barbiturates are a type of prescription drug that was originally designed to help those suffering from anxiety and sleeping disorders. However, as is so often the case with synthetic drugs, the downside of its use ultimately supersedes its upside. Barbiturates manipulate the brain’s chemical signaling, effectively deactivating many important areas. When taken even in low dosages, barbiturates will produce euphoria, but high dosages can be deadly due to breathing suppression. The good news about this substance is that its addiction rates have fallen as newer drugs have replaced it.

Alcohol

This is another substance that, despite its extremely high addictive potential, is perfectly legal for anyone who is 21 years of age of older (in the United States). It is one of the oldest drugs on this list and has the effect of magnifying dopamine levels to between forty and three hundred plus percent. The more alcohol you drink the higher your dopamine level goes. You also have a greater chance of being in an accident of suffering from alcohol poisoning.

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