Drugs use now an urgent challenge worldwide

Drugs use now an urgent challenge worldwide

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Increase in drug use during Covid

A large number of people globally suffered from declined mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic. Most of the times the reasons remained economic shocks and movement restrictions, and other shutdowns measures to contain the pandemic. While people remained at home, many of them tried to relive their stress, anxiety, or depression through substance abuse. This is clearly reflecting in a latest United Nations study. Millions of people used drugs when Covid-19 pandemic triggered unexpected disruption of life, says report.

Nearly 275 million people globally used drugs in 2020, a 22 percent rise from 2010, the report reveals. The study of United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) also offers an overview of global drug markets along with their impact on well-being of people. As per UNODC’s World Drug Report 2021, cannabis preference now four times higher than 20 years ago, in some regions. Further, total figure of adolescents who perceived it as a harmful drug, dropped by 40 percent from two decades ago.

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Increase in drug use during Covid

Though there are many proofs that cannabis use causes a range of health and other affects, they found it appealing. Even most of the nations also reported a significant increase in cannabis use in Covid times. This lower perception of drug use risk is a reason behind higher rates of drug use said UNODC Executive Director, Ghada Waly. As per the findings of the report, there is a need to close the gap between perception and reality. The report also highlights that how it’s important to educate young people and safeguard public health.

The Covid-19 pandemic has pushed over 100 million people into extreme poverty worldwide. It has also aggravated unemployment and inequalities in a big way, with nearly 255 million job cuts in 2020. The world has seen ever increasing mental health conditions. Evidently, these factors have links with the rise in drug use disorders. The studies have found several changes in drug use patterns in pandemic times. These changes include the use of cannabis and the non-medical use of pharmaceutical sedatives.

Drug abuse an urgent challenge

Basic socioeconomic stressors have also been the reasons accelerating demand for these drugs. The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres called global drugs issue an urgent challenge that threatens to aggravate the pandemic impacts. This hampers “healthy and inclusive recovery”, he alerted the world, marking The International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. The pandemic has taught us to believe in science, and we must trust the scientific evidences on drug use risk too, he suggested.

The pandemic has taught us to believe in science, and we must trust the scientific evidences on drug use risk too, the UN chief suggested. The World Drug Report published reveals that drug linked deaths have nearly doubled over the past decade. Furthermore, in 2019, about 10% of HIV cases were the result of people injecting themselves with harmful substances. At the same time, dark web drug sales continue to grow globally, with increasing rates of non-medical use of pharmaceuticals, including opioids.

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