Drug Abuse

Things to know

  1. Heroin, Opium, Alcohol, Cannabis and Propoxyphene are the five most common drugs abused by the children in India(Childline India Foundation)
  2. Other than these children have products such as cough syrups , whitener, pain relief ointment, glue , paint , gasoline, wet carbon paper , mixture of fibre matting and boiling toothpaste are abused by children
  3. Substances can be abused in different ways. Substances may be chewed, swallowed, placed on mucous membrane, injected, smoked or inhaled.

Consequences for children

Drug abuse is a social evil and the effects of it are at individual, familial and societal level

  1. Physical – accidents, convulsions , coma , infections including HIV, damage to body parts
  2. Psychological – delirium , memory and concentration problem, abnormal behaviour
  3. Social – rejection by peers, family , employers, exploitation and violence, crimes may be committed to obtain substance (WHO, 2000)

What can I do when I see a child abusing drug?

  1. Treat the child with respect and dignity
  2. Involve the local NGOs who are working on the issue or contact 1098

Relevant legislations

  1. Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act
  2. Juvenile Justice Act


  1. WHO (2000), "Working with street children : A training package on substance use, sexual and reproductive health including HIV/AIDS" , Geneva