• Krokodil

    Desomorphine, better known by its street name Krokodil, is around 8-10 times more potent than morphine with a powerful, fast-acting sedative high akin to that of heroin.
    This extremely addictive, injectable opioid is named, in part, because users report black or green scaly skin as a side effect – the flesh then starts to "harden, rot, and fall off," often in chunks. Addicts will usually die within two years of first use.
  • Tik (Crystal Meth)

    "Tik" is the South African street name for crystal methamphetamine.
    It has a very bad reputation in South Africa because it is more potent than other forms of meth and because it is so easily available. It started off as the drug of choice in poor communities because of its affordability, but has since spread to other levels of society.
  • Heroin (Whoonga/Nyaope)

    Heroin is an opioid drug that is synthesized from morphine, a naturally occurring substance extracted from the seed pod of the Asian opium poppy plant. Heroin usually appears as a white or brown powder or as a black sticky substance, known as “black tar heroin.”
    South Africa is currently experiencing an epedemic of heroin abuse in the form of cheap heroin nicknamed "whoonga", "nayaope" or "sugars".
  • Buttons (Mandrax)

    South Africa is the largest abuser of Mandrax in the world.
    Statistics show that Mandrax with Dagga is still the drug of preference in the largest parts of South Africa. Mandrax is mainly sold in the form of a tablet and is highly addictive.
  • Ecstasy

    Ecstasy is a synthetic, psychoactive drug that has similarities to both the stimulant amphetamine and the hallucinogen mescaline. It produces feelings of increased energy, euphoria, emotional warmth and empathy toward others, and distortions in sensory and time perception.
    Mixed with alcohol, Ecstasy is extremely dangerous and can, in fact, be deadly. So widespread has been the harm of this “designer drug,” that emergency room incidents skyrocketed by more than 1,200% after Ecstasy became the “club drug” of choice at all-night “rave” parties and dance clubs.
  • LSD

    Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD) (popular street name "Acid") - is the strongest and most popular hallucinogenic substance known.
    LSD users call an LSD experience a “trip,” typically lasting twelve hours or so. When things go wrong, which often happens, it is called a “bad trip,” another name for a living hell.
  • Prescription Medication

    Abuse of prescription drugs can be even riskier than the abuse of illegally manufactured drugs. The high potency of some of the synthetic (man-made) drugs available as prescription drugs creates a high overdose risk.
    The consequences of prescription drug abuse have been steadily worsening, reflected in increased treatment admissions, emergency room visits, and overdose deaths.
  • Alcohol

    Alcohol affects every organ in the drinker's body and can damage a developing fetus.
    Intoxication can impair brain function and motor skills; heavy use can increase risk of certain cancers, stroke, and liver disease.
  • Dagga

    By no means a "safe" or "soft" drug as is so often claimed.
    In some ways, the effect on a user's mental health for example, dagga can be more dangerous than heroin.
  • Tobacco

    Tobacco use is one of the leading causes of preventable illness and death. It causes many different cancers as well as chronic lung diseases such as emphysema and bronchitis, heart disease, pregnancy-related problems, and many other serious health problems.
    Each day, more than 3,200 people under 18 smoke their first cigarette, and approximately 2,100 youth and young adults become daily smokers.
  • Cocaine

    Extracted from coca leaves, cocaine was originally developed as a painkiller. It is most often sniffed, with the powder absorbed into the bloodstream through the nasal tissues. It can also be ingested or rubbed into the gums.
    Cocaine is one of the most dangerous drugs known to man. Once a person begins taking the drug, it has proven almost impossible to become free of its grip physically and mentally.
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Saturday, 12 August 2017 06:00

Dagga leads to heroin abuse: teachers raise concern over legalization

2017-08-15 18:27

Teachers around the country have raised serious concerns regarding the possible legalisation of dagga in South Africa, arguing that it could prove detrimental to the youth because it was “unrealistic to believe that legalised dagga would be controlled and kept out of the hands of young people.”

This is according to a report released on Friday by the Concerned Young People of South Africa, a youth based and community focused initiative that offers support and guidance to young people while also providing a voice for the youth of South Africa.

The organisation surveyed 5250 ex-drug users as part of an ongoing study, Self-reported Drug Use Among South African Youth.

The survey showed 96% of respondents stated that the first drug they ever used was dagga. The average age of first dagga use was 16 years. Incidence of onset of cannabis use was the highest between ages 14-17.

Of those respondents who stated that they went on to use other drugs after dagga, 49.21% went directly from the use of dagga to cheap heroin (whoonga/nyaope) and 27.68% went directly from the use of dagga to Mandrax.

These two drugs, which accounted for 76.89% of second drugs used, are both drugs that are used by being mixed together with dagga and smoked.

The third drug of use was heroin (whoonga/nyaope), with 70% of all respondents saying this was their third choice of drug.

These findings, according to the organisation, confirmed that dagga could be the gateway drug to other drugs in the South African context.

“Dagga’s efficacy as a gateway drug and the danger posed by it could be enhanced in the South African context, due to the method of heroin ingestion in the country, which is to mix heroin with dagga and smoke the combination,” the organisation said.

“Underlying the heroin epidemic in SA is dagga as a drug of first use and the role it plays in the progression to the use of other drugs.”

For these reasons and many others, South African educators are not in favour of the legalisation. They argue that the “best interest of the child” and the country’s education system are being overlooked in this debate.

Based on feedback from 2534 schools across the country visited in recent years, the report showed that marijuana use was one of the greatest challenges currently faced by South African schools.

In the report, an educator from Hammanskraal said “many learners believed dagga would help them obtain better marks.”

“I can’t imagine why they think so because we have experience in a school of dagga smokers who regularly under-achieve.

“If a child becomes very daring and confrontational we test him/her for drugs – it is part of our school policy and parents agree to test – and 99% of the time they test positive for drugs, of which cannabis is the most widely used.

“We’ve had children falling asleep in class because they were “too relaxed” after smoking dagga; we’ve had kids laughing and shouting and playing outside while they should have been in a class focusing on their education – they ingested ‘space cakes’ during break and were too spaced-out to control their emotions and their behaviour.”

Meanwhile, a school pupil is recovering in hospital after eating muffins laced with dagga at her high school in Orange Farm

The girl and about 20 others at Siyaphambili High School landed in hospital two weeks ago after eating the popularly known “space cookies” purchased from an 18-year-old Grade 12 pupil.

The girl was moved from intensive care on Wednesday but remained under observation in hospital. Her family has opened a case of attempted murder against the young man.

Another teacher from KwaZulu-Natal said in the report: “The thinking and reasoning behind the legalisation of dagga was solely because of its capabilities to ease the dreaded pain of certain ailments.

“I sincerely hope that when it does become legal then it is solely for that purpose only and it must be prescribed by someone in authority and who understands its benefits. My understanding is that it is not for recreational purposes.”

Read 410 times Last modified on Saturday, 02 September 2017 08:42
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