Health Issues, Drug Risks & Sanctions


Physical or psychological damage may occur when the following substances are abused. Here are some of the health risks related to each substance.

Alcohol: Alcohol consumption causes a number of marked changes in behavior. Low doses impair judgment and coordination and increase the incidence of aggressive behavior. High doses can cause respiratory depression and death. Alcohol intoxication is equivalent to a drug overdose. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, the effects of alcohol are multiplied. Repeated use of alcohol can lead to change in tolerance and dependence. Cessation of alcohol intake can produce withdrawal systems including tremors, hallucinations, convulsions, and death. Long-term consumption of large quantities of alcohol can lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and the liver. Women who drink even small amounts of alcohol during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol syndrome. Children of alcoholic parents have a 40% greater risk of developing alcoholism than those whose parents are not alcoholic.

Anabolic Androgenic Steroids: Steroid users can experience serious cardiovascular, liver, central nervous system, gastrointestinal, and reproductive disorders. In many, use can result in testicular atrophy, sterility, impotence and arrested growth. Sterility, as well as the irreversible development of masculine traits, can result when women used steroids. Psychological impairments include mood swings, depression, and very aggressive behavior.

Depressants: The use of depressants can result in a change in intolerance and physical, as well as psychological dependency. Combining several depressants can increase health hazards. Withdrawal systems include anxiety, vomiting, acute psychotic episodes, seizures, and death.

Hallucinogens: Large doses of PCP may result in a convulsive seizure, coma, and death. Mood disorders occur and users may become violent, irrational and potentially harmful to themselves and others. LSD, mescaline, and Psilocybin cause sensations and feelings to change rapidly. The User may experience panic, confusion, anxiety, and loss of control. In rare instances, flashbacks, of the drub experience may occur, even after use has ceased.

Narcotics: Tolerance to the euphoric effects of narcotics and physical dependence develops rapidly. In order to avoid the abstinence syndrome, the addict becomes preoccupied with acquiring the drug. While withdrawal symptoms are seldom life-threatening, they are extremely uncomfortable.

Stimulants: High doses of stimulants result in intense personality disturbances including visual and auditory hallucination, delusions and paranoia. Tolerance develops rapidly; cross-tolerance does develop among stimulant drugs (e.g., methamphetamine and cocaine). The use of cocaine can cause death by cardiac arrest and/or respiratory failure. Stimulants are addictive and while withdrawal is less dangerous than withdrawal from depressants, depression can make a person more vulnerable to suicide.

Cannabis (Marijuana): The effects of cannabis can remain in the body for up to three weeks after smoking one marijuana cigarette. It is easily detectable through urinalysis–even in the occasional user. Research indicates that regular use may have long-term effects on a user’s brain, heart, and reproductive organs. The carcinogens found in a marijuana cigarette pose a serious risk to lung function. Additionally, memory loss, lack of motivation and a diminished attention span are other effects of regular usage.


Applicable sanctions under federal, state or local laws for the use, possession or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol can be found in the following:

Federal: Federal (Harrison) Narcotic Act

Federal Narcotic Drugs
Import and Export Act
Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act
Federal Alcohol Administration

State: Ohio Revised Code Chapters:

2925 Drug Offenses
3719 Controlled Substances
4301 Liquor Control Laws

Local: Lakewood, OH Municipal Code

Sanctions can include probation, fines, driver license suspension and/or incarceration.