Drugs: Just say no!

earlysummer / photocase.com

Everyone knows drugs are bad news. They mess with your mind as well as your body and they can have serious medical consequences. But if your friends are using them, you could find yourself thinking ‘well I can try it. It can’t hurt can it? Just this once…’

Risky for everyone

Drugs can cause problems for anyone, but if you have a congenital heart disease the effects are even more dangerous. Your heart is already under great stress and using drugs – alcohol and tobacco are also drugs – puts it under even more stress and can have disastrous consequences for you.

Don’t gamble with your health

Every time you take drugs you’re taking a risk. Alcohol and narcotics such as cannabis and street drugs like GHB, alter your mind. Anxiety and paranoia are just some of the more common side effects. On top of that, they affect your heart. The trouble is you never know if, when, why or how they will affect you.

Is it worth it?

In some places and situations, you’ll find drugs are widely available – like at a nightclub, party or rave. Taking a pill then might not seem so dangerous, especially if loads of other people are doing it. But be careful you can never be sure what the pills contain. Some drugs may look innocent but they can have terrifying effects.

You may start to feel sick and dizzy, sweat heavily, develop a headache, suffer cramps… in any of these situations you should contact a doctor immediately. Be honest, is it really worth it?

Better to be open

If you have used drugs, or are considering using them, it’s better to be open with your cardiologist or your nurse – someone you trust and who knows about congenital heart diseases. They won’t judge you and can answer your questions and provide confidential help and advice.

Find a place to explain

Don’t give in to peer pressure. Talk to your friends and explain why drugs are so dangerous for you and your heart. A party may not be the right time to explain, so try and find a quiet place to talk about it. Drugs? Just say no! True friends will understand.

Author(s): Ulrika Hallin
Reviewed by: Carmen Ryberg
Last updated: 2010-10-05

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