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The Colombo Plan Asian Centre for Certification and Education of Addiction Professionals Training Series

Curriculum 1
Physiology and 1
Pharmacology
for Addiction Professionals

MODULE 2INTRODUCTION TO
PSYCHOACTIVE SUBSTANCE USE

Module 2 Learning Objectives


Define

psychoactive substance
List general ways in which psychoactive
substances affect mood, thoughts, and behavior
List the four main categories (classes) of
psychoactive substances and several substances
within each
List the methods of administering psychoactive
substances
Discuss the levels of progression of substance
use

2.2

Psychoactive Substances
Affect

the bodys central nervous system


Change how people behave or perceive what
is happening around them

2.3

Central Nervous System

2.4

BloodBrain Barrier

Large, watersoluble
molecules are
blocked

Small, fat-soluble
molecules can enter

2.5

Pharmacology
Studies

the effects of medications and other


substances on the body and the brain

2.6

Half-Life
The

amount of time it takes to eliminate half of


the original dose of a substance from the body

2.7

Other Factors
A persons

age, the length of time a person


has regularly used a substance, and the
amount of a substance regularly used affect
how the body:
Absorbs psychoactive substances
Metabolizes them
Eliminates them

2.8

Psychoactive Substances
Psychoactive

substances alter:

Mood
Thoughts
Sensory perceptions
Behavior

2.9

Effects of Psychoactive
Substances
Can

be positive or negative
Depend to a large extent on the type of
substance used

2.10

Drug Classes: Examples


Stimulants

Opioids
(narcotics)

Cocaine

Heroin

Alcohol

LSD

Amphetamine

Morphine

Barbiturates

Mescaline
Peyote

Methamphetamine

Opium

Benzodiazepines

Ecstasy

Demerol

GammaHydroxybutyrat
e (GHB);
Rohypnol

Mushrooms

Nicotine,
Caffeine

Depressants Hallucinogen
s

2.11

Legal Substances
Just

because a substance is legal does not


mean it is safer than an illegal substance

2.12

Other
Some

drugs do not fit neatly into a category:

Cannabinoids (marijuana, hashish)


Khat/Miraa
Dissociative anesthetics (phencyclidine [PCP],
ketamine)
Inhalants solvents, gases, nitrites

2.13

Routes of Administration
Swallowing
Snorting
Smoking
Inhaling

fumes
Intramuscular (IM) injection
Subcutaneous (SC) injection
Intravenous (IV) injection
Topical
Sublingual

2.14

Routes of Administration
The

faster the drug hits the brain, the greater


and more reinforcing its effect

2.15

Speed of Action
Smoking:

710 seconds
Intravenous injecting: 1530 seconds
Injecting into the muscle or under the skin: 35
minutes

2.16

Speed of Action
Mucous

membrane absorption (snorting,


rectal): 35 minutes
Swallowing: 2030 minutes
Absorbed through skin: Slowly over a long
period

2.17

Small-Group Exercise: Routes


of Administration
Form

small groups
As a group, develop a list of any five
psychoactive substances
For each substance, list the most common
routes of administration used in your area
Keep in mind that some substances have
more than one route of administration

2.18

Break
15 minutes

2.19

Progression of Use
Experimental/recreational

use
Circumstantial/Occasional use
Intensified/regular use
Compulsive/addictive use

2.20

Learning Assessment
Write

one quiz question about todays material


on a piece of paper

2.21

Journal
What

did you learn today that you did not


already know?
How might you apply what you learned to your
job?
What questions do you still have?

2.22