Monday, November 01, 2010

Which is the most dangerous drug?

Guardian: "[Blank] is the most dangerous drug in the UK by a considerable margin, beating heroin and crack cocaine into second and third place, according to an authoritative study published today".

Which addictive and mind-altering drug causes the most social damage each year? Think you know the answer?


Anonymous said...

Alcohol is obvious and thanks for the link.

I would like to put forward also any drug used on prescription for pain (opiods) or sleep (benzos). These drugs are having to be used long term where no solutions can be found. (Though people are forced off them by govt. even when no solution to the presenting issues are offered or working).

These drugs alter personalities, funcionality and physical health of a person and they are becoming more and more common.

I am not advocating that they should be removed but that research into chronic conditions of pain and sleep and psych around pain are looked at to help reduce the need and therefore impact.

byron smith said...

Anon - Yes, alcohol might be obvious to anyone with a medical background, though the reason such a report makes headlines is that it is profoundly counterintuitive to much of the population.

Thanks for your other thoughts. I don't have much to add.

Jon said...

Indded this has been known by the medical and drug and alcohol professions around the Western workd for decades but for some reason has never made it into policy. Why don't we ban alcohol like we do these other drugs? Well the evidence of the Prohibition era in the USA is that this strategy was ineffective in preventing use, but drove it underground and fuelled the growth of organised crime, as well as leaving drinkers vulnerable to being poisoned by unregulated manufacturers. Much better to regulate it and try to educate people about responsible use. For things like heroin, cocaine etc on the other hand...hang on a second!

byron smith said...

Guardian: How to stop getting scientific advice you don't like.

byron smith said...

Economist: map of world alcohol consumption.

byron smith said...

The Conversation: My drinking, your problem - alcohol hurts non-drinkers too. An attempt to quantify the harm suffered by non-drinkers.

The Conversation: Big alcohol, big tobacco. Mapping similarities.