Drug Abuse and Preventive Measures


I will present to you the negative phenomenon of drug addiction and abuse in society and how we can jointly resolve the issue. I will demonstrate the situation nowadays to determine the real scale of drug addiction these days. Moreover, this presentation is aimed to transmit to the public both individual and group addressing methods to prevent drug abuse in society. Finally, we will concentrate on how to help drug-addicted individuals and why it is worth dealing with both sides of the problem. Let us start by outlining the real numbers and tendencies of drug addiction in the U.S.

Addiction and Abuse: Determining the Issue

To begin with, it is worth saying that distinguishing between drug abuse and addiction is critical since it will help build and analyze the chain of the drug addiction process. So, drug abuse is one-time, non-repeating process of taking substances. On the contrary, drug addiction is the specific state of mind that forces individuals to take substances regularly (or more frequently) and increase the intensity of the effect when the specific dose is already cannot satisfy the physical needs. In 2016, which is the most relevant statistic, there were 7.4 million people addicted to substance addiction. What is most notable is that the tendency is increasing, and in 2021, more people will be addicted to substances, mainly due to the legalization of Marijuana in certain states. The most popular substances are Heroin, Opioid Painkillers, Marijuana, and Methamphetamine.

The age of drug addicted: what is the most “targeted” audience?

However, it is not sufficient to understand the scale of the issue: we must also determine the most abuse-risky audience. By doing this, we can direct our main forces in the right vector. While observing Canadian statistics, it states that more than 60% of illegal drug users represent 15-24 years of individuals, and 17-32% report using cannabis in the past year. These statistics lead us to the consequence that most drug abusers, who have not become addicted, study at educational institutions. So, the main emphasis should be put on preventing adolescents and young adults from abusing substances, and the vast majority of events should be helpful in educational centers directly.

What are the influence factors of drug addiction?

When we know the main audience, it is crucial to understand why they take drugs fundamentally; what factors force them to abuse substances and become addicted to them after that? Turning to the reports, it is estimated that the most influential factors for adolescents and young adults are race issues, childhood poverty, and the place of education. Moreover, the risk of being genetically addicted to drugs is 40-80% among men and 20-30% among women. Compared to those who become the first addicted member of the family, which is 10-15% among the whole population, genetic factors increase negative outcomes probability from 2 to 6 times, which should also be taken into consideration by society.

Destroying the “addiction chain” from both sides

National drug involved overdose deaths

As you can see on the figure, the number of deaths from overdose rises exponentially. To prevent the rise in our community, we should address our forces equally to prevent those who have not taken substances and cure those who are addicted to drugs since the number of such individuals is extremely significant these days. We cannot prevent drug distribution in the U.S., but we can influence people to refuse them, and the fewer people will take them, and the more individuals will be cured, the less it will bring to those who sell them. Consequently, we will gradually create a positive tendency, which will not resolve the problem at all in a month, but it will so significantly reduce the expanding tendency.

How groups can address the issue to the society?

When the problem is understood, and the audience and their motives are determined, it is important to turn the theoretical approach into action. To begin with, the group approach is crucial for preventing the drug-abusing tendency because the more individuals see how great it is to live without drugs, the more they will understand the importance of refusing them. Some films demonstrating the negative influence of substances on the personality might be shown when it comes to educational institutions. As a result, many adolescents and young adults will be informed of the negative consequences of taking drugs, even unregularly. Moreover, by addressing the issue correctly, the community might create a positive trend on living happily without taking substances.

How individuals should behave?

Turning to the individual actions, it is critical to have a capability to see the possible drug abuser and prevent them from further addiction. As you can see on the slide, when people face too many problems in different spheres of life, they try to find a temporary solution for all of the obstacles. However, they do not realize that substances do not resolve an individual’s issue but only aggravate it. Consequently, such people need psychological support from another person. In certain cases, a piece of advice from a respected individual might help prevent drug abuse and further addiction.

Resolving the issue: three concepts

On the other hand, even if the person can be prevented from drug abuse, there are still drug-addicted people who need a professional approach to their issue. As you can see on the slide, I do not propose the professional treatment provided by our community, but I have stated three main concepts that we can do to help substance-addicted individuals lead a healthy and active drug-free life. First and foremost, we should create value in life by organizing special events for drug-addicted personalities. As a result, they will feel it and possibly realize: their addiction might be treated when appropriate efforts are done. It is similar to public addressing, but in this case, we do not prevent the person from drug abuse but help them to quit their addiction.

Money donation

Even though this is one of the most trivial and uninvolved methods of resolving the drug addiction issue, it becomes a significant power when combined with the other two methods of treating drug-addicted individuals. Some sources state that it takes 16 thousand dollars a year to treat a drug-addicted person. As a result, by doing our best to treat this issue, we can implement volunteer donation campaigns, and the raised money will be directly transmitted to hospitals and doctors to buy necessary equipment and pay salaries. If we regularly give a small amount of money to clinics, one day, we will realize how many lives were saved due to our volunteer help.

Group approach

Last but not least, when a certain group of people faces the only drug-addicted person, their words have a much more significant impact and, as a result, might be transmitted more effectively. Yes, our community cannot prescribe curing methods for drug-addicted people, but it is in our competence to cure their minds and soul to understand the harm of their drug addiction and be willing to stop this tendency. Even if they remain addicted physically, it will be much easier to consciously treating their substance addiction rather than feeling alone in front of their issue.


In conclusion, I would like to emphasize the importance of having a short and clear slogan for the campaign. One of the examples of such a slogan is demonstrated on the slide. The key notion of the slogan is the value of life, which is usually loosed by those who take substances. If we sustainably recall them that they have only one life, it might help change the mindset of unformed adolescents and fooled of “independence aura” young adults. I want to thank you all for your attentionc. If you have any questions, I am ready to answer them.


Castellanos-Ryan, N., O’Leary-Barrett, M., & Conrod, P. J. (2013). Substance-use in Childhood and Adolescence: A Brief Overview of Developmental Processes and their Clinical Implications. J Can Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry, 22(1), 41–47.

MacNicol, B. (2016). The biology of addiction. Canadian Journal of Anesthesia/Journal Canadien d’anesthésie, 64(2), 141–148.

Margolin, A. (2021). How Many Americans Are Addicted to Drugs? Transformations Treatment Center.

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2021). Overdose Death Rates

Nomura, Y., Hurd, Y. L., & Pilowsky, D. J. (2012). Life-Time Risk for Substance Use Among Offspring of Abusive Family Environment From the Community. Substance Use & Misuse, 47(12), 1281–1292.

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