Alcohol: Ethyl Alcohol, Ethanol

Drug group: Depressant

Street names: Booze, brew, juice hooch, liquor, beer, wine or the product brand names

Appearance: Liquid

Packaging: Bottles and cans

Method of use: Oral

Paraphernalia: Flasks and fake IDs

Duration: 4-12 hours

Dependence: Moderate to high

Possible effects: Relaxation, decreased alertness, impaired coordination, euphoria, mood swings, blurred vision, altered perceptions, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. Chronic use damages the brain, liver, and digestive tract; extended use results in high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, ulcers, colitis, muscle cramps, sleep disturbances, and cirrhosis of the liver.

Other facts:
Alcohol is the number one gateway drug. Alcohol is burned by the body at the rate of 1/2-ounce per hour, and nothing speeds this process. A 12-ounce can of beer, a 5-ounce glass of wine, and a 1/2-ounce glass of hard liquor all contain the same amount of alcohol.

Amphetamines: Benzedrine, Dexedrine, Desoxyn, Biphetamine

Drug group: Stimulant

Street names: Speed, uppers, pep pills, black beauties, footballs, dexies

Appearance: Pills, capsules, tablets, or white powder

Packaging: Pill bottles, plastic bags, or paper packets

Method of use: Oral in pill form, inhaled as powder, or injected

Paraphernalia: Hypodermic needles, spoons, belts, or tubes; straws or razor blades

Duration: 4-12 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Increased alertness, anxiety, excitation, insomnia, appetite loss, dilated pupils, irritability, headaches, blurred vision, dizziness, loss of coordination, delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, collapse; overdose can result in high blood pressure, fever, elevated heart rate, stroke, or heart failure.

Other facts: Laboratory animals will self-administer amphetamines until death. Although users think they can perform better with amphetamines, they cannot.

Anabolic Steroids: Anavar, Anadrol-50, Maxibolin, Dianabol

Drug group: Synthetic

Street names: Steroids, ‘roids

Appearance: Liquid or pills

Packaging: Vials, prescription bottles

Method of use: Injection or oral

Paraphernalia: Syringe, belt or rubber hose

Duration: Varies with use

Dependence: Varies with use

Possible effects: Quick weight and muscle gain, aggressiveness, acne, jaundice, purple or red body spots, swelling in feet and lower legs, trembling, stunted growth, bad breath, blood poisoning, stomach pains, bone pain, muscle cramps, chills, nausea, vomiting, fever, continuous headache, insomnia, hives, rash, sore tongue, unnatural hair growth, heart disease, kidney damage, and various cancers.

Other facts: Steroids are a synthetic form of the male hormone testosterone, which regulates growth. Too much testosterone causes the body to shut down its own growth mechanisms.

Steroids were originally developed to maintain strength in aging men, but some weight lifters and other athletes started using them to excel in competition.

Today, the only legitimate use of steroids is for burn victims and anemics.

Barbiturates: Amytal, Butisol, Nembutal, Phenobarbital, Seconal, Tuinal

Drug group: Depressants

Street names: Downers, barbs, yellows, red or blue devils, rainbows

Appearance: Capsules or pills which may be red, yellow, blue, or white

Packaging: Pill bottles or plastic bags

Method of use: Oral

Paraphernalia: Pill bottles

Duration: 2-12 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Relaxation, decreased alertness, impaired coordination, slurred speech, disorientation, sleep; overdose can cause dilated pupils, shallow respiration, clammy skin, weak and rapid pulse, brain and liver damage, coma, or death.

Other facts: Barbituates are often used in conjunction with alcohol, a deadly combination that often leads to coma or death.

Cocaine

Drug group: Stimulants

Street names: Coke, blow, white, snow, snort, flake, nose candy, cane, Bolivian marching powder

Appearance: White crystalline powder or powder chunks

Packaging: Small foil or paper packets; small clear vials

Method or use: Inhaled, smoked, or injected

Paraphernalia: Straws, razor blades, rolled dollar bills, mirrors, glass pipes, needle and syringe, spoons, and belts.

Duration: 4-8 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Euphoria, increased alertness, feelings of confidence and well-being. Can cause irritability, personality changes, depression, fatigue, psychosis, dilated pupils, runny nose, and elevated heart rate, respiration, and body temperature. Overdose can cause extreme agitation, respiratory failure, and death.

Other facts: Laboratory animals will self-administer cocaine until death. Cocaine blocks the body’s ability to reabsorb adrenaline, which can result in heart failure.

Crack Cocaine

Drug group: Stimulants

Street names: Crack, rock, hubba

Appearance: White to tan pellets or chunks

Packaging: Small clay or clear plastic or glass vials

Method of use: Smoked in small pipes

Paraphernalia: Pipes made from glass jars, cardboard cylinders, or glass base pipes

Duration: Immediate high lasting a few minutes to a few hours

Dependence: High and immediate

Possible effects: Euphoria, high energy, insomnia, appetite loss, dilated pupils, and elevated heart rate, respiration, and body temperature. Prolonged use can result in irritability, depression, paranoia, convulsions, and death.

Other facts: The “high” effect of crack is felt within seven seconds of use.

Diet Pills: Didrex, Fastin, Tenuate, Baccarate, Ionamin, Tepanil

Drug group: Amphetamines

Street names : Same as amphetamines

Appearance: Pills, capsules, or tablets

Packaging: Vials, paper packets, pill bottles

Method of use: Swallowed

Paraphernalia: Pill bottles

Duration: 4-12 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Increased wakefulness, alertness, initiative, decreased appetite. May cause irritability, restlessness, psychosis, and depression.

Other facts: Although developed to aid in weight loss, the effects are fruitless unless dietary habits are changed.

Hashish

Drug group: Cannabis Sativa

Street names: Hash or hash oil

Appearance: Gold, brown, or black gummy substance compressed into cakes

Packaging: Small chunks or balls wrapped in foil, oil sold in small vials

Method of use: Smoked, eaten, or added to cigarettes

Paraphernalia: Small, odd-shaped pipes

Duration: 2-6 hours

Dependence: Moderate

Possible effects: Relaxation, euphoria, memory deficit, increased pulse, alteration of perceptions and inhibitions, bloodshot eyes, dry mouth and throat, increased appetite, dream-like state, acute sensations, and paranoia. Higher doses result in hallucinations, synesthesia, anxiety, and paranoia.

Other facts: Hashish is extremely high (10 to 15 percent) in the active ingredient THC. Effects of THC on the human brain are multiple and negative.

Heroin

Drug group: Opiates

Street names: Smack, junk, sugar, mud, tar, brown, China white, black tar, Mexican brown

Appearance: White to brown powder, or black tar-like substance

Packaging: Small foil or paper packets, toy balloons, cellophane wrappers

Method of use: Injected into the veins, inhaled through the nose, or smoked

Paraphernalia: Hypodermic needles, spoons, belts, and cotton balls

Duration: 2-4 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Euphoria, drowsiness, relaxation, mental impairment, decreased coordination, constricted pupils, nausea, and possible vomiting. Overdose can result in slow and shallow breathing, clammy skin, convulsions coma, and death.

Other facts : Pure heroin is rarely sold on the streets and is usually only 5% pure. Overdoses are common.

Inhalants: Amyl nitrite/ Butyl nitrite, Nitrous Oxide, gasoline, glue, correction fluid, paint thinner, aerosols

Drug group: Inhalants

Street names: Gas, bullet, poppers, snappers, rush, bolt, locker room

Appearance: Any substance that emits vapors

Packaging: Spray cans, glue containers, bullet-shaped cartridges, household product containers

Method of use: Inhaled

Paraphernalia: Any product that emits toxic odors or fumes, cloth rag, plastic bag, balloons

Duration: 1-3 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Hallucination, poor coordination, stupor, impaired thought processes, violent behavior, decreased body temperature, lowered blood pressure, psychosis, nausea, sneezing, nosebleeds, fatigue, death.

Other facts: Most deaths occur from choking or suffocation.

LSD: Lysergic Acid Diethylamide

Drug group: Hallucinogens

Street names: Acid, ISD microdot, blotter, trips, cubes, white lightning

Appearance: Clear liquid, colored pills, white powder, or soaked into paper, stamps, or candy

Packaging: Blotter paper squares, gelatin squares, pills in plastic bags, vials, small paper squares

Method of use: Oral

Paraphernalia: Small vials or paper packets, sheets of blotter paper

Duration: 8‑16 hours

Dependence: Low

Possible effects: Hallucinations, synesthesia (cross‑confusion of senses), distorted sense of sight, taste, and smell, dilated pupils, high blood pressure, fever sweating, chills, and clammy skin “Bad trips” can result in confusion, panic, paranoia, anxiety, loss of control, and psychosis.

Other facts: LSD is many thousand times more powerful than other hallucinogens, and will produce “flashbacks”, or recurrence of hallucinations, that sometimes result in psychosis.

Marijuana

Drug group: Cannabis sativa

Street names: Pbt, ganja, grass, weed, reefer, nickle, dime, splif, smoke, joint, Acapulco Gold

Appearance: Tobacco-like, dried flowers and leaves (buds) on sterns, often with seeds

Packaging: Plastic bags, joints (hand rolled cigarettes), or foil packages

Method of use: Smoked as joints, in pipes or water bongs, or eaten in baked foods

Paraphernalia: Odd‑shaped pipes, water bongs, cigarette papers, roach clips

Duration: 2-6 hours

Dependence: Moderate

Possible effects: Relaxation, euphoria, increased pulse, alteration of perceptions and inhibitions, bloodshot eyes, dry mouth and throat, increased appetite, dream-like state, acute sensations, and paranoia. Chronic use affects reproductive organs, memory, thought processes and other brain functions, lungs and lung functions, suppression of the immune system, and creates a loss of self-identity.

Other facts: Marijuana is the number two gateway drug. The most active ingredient in marijuana is THC. THC is fat soluble, storing itself in fat cells, and taking 4-6 weeks to be eliminated from the body.

Methamphetamines

Drug group: Stimulants

Street names: Crystal, crystalmeth, meth, speed, crank, methadrine. In smokable form, called “ice”.

Appearance: White to tan powder, capsules

Packaging: Small foil or paper packets, plastic hags

Method of use: Injected, swallowed, or inhaled

Paraphernalia: Hypodermic needles, spoons, belts or tubes; straws or razor blades; glass pipes

Duration: 4-12 hours

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Increased alertness, anxiety, excitation, insomnia, appetite loss, dilated pupils, irritability, headaches, blurred vision, dizziness, loss of coordination, delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, collapse; overdose can result in high blood pressure, fever, elevated heart rate, stroke, and heart failure.

Other facts: Methamphetamine is more stimulating than amphetamines, and users rapidly reach a state of dependence.

Organic Hallucinogens: Mushrooms, Peyote, Mescaline

Drug group: Hallucinogens (organic)

Street names: ‘Shrooms, cactus, mesc, buttons

Appearance: Hard brown discs, tablets, or capsules (Mescaline and Peyote); fresh or dried mushrooms, purplish or greenish in color

Packaging: Plastic bags

Method of use: Chewed and swallowed; smoked or taken orally (Mescaline)

Paraphernalia: Plastic bags, pill bottles

Duration: 1‑12 hours

Dependence: Low

Possible effects: Altered senses, tremors, panic, confusion, suspicion, anxiety, loss of control, dilated pupils, fever, increased heart rate and blood pressure, loss of appetite, psychosis.

Other Acts: Organic hallucinogens were used by primitive and Native American cultures in religious ceremonies.

PCP: Phencyclidine

Drug group: Hallucinogens

Street names: Angel dust, supergrass, KJ, rocket fuel, embalming fluid, killerweed, sherms, crystal

Appearance: Clear liquid, white to brown powder, or a gummy mass

Packaging: Tablets and capsules or clear liquid applied to marijuana or cigarettes

Method of use: Swallowed or smoked

Paraphernalia: Dark cigarettes

Duration: 1-6 hours

Dependence: Moderate

Possible effects: hallucinations; distorted sense of sight taste, and smell; high blood pressure and heart rate; fever sweating, chills, or clammy skin; rapid and involuntary eye movement; exaggerated walk; extraordinary strength; a sense of invulnerability; and image distortion. “Bad trips” can result in confusion, panic paranoia, anxiety, loss of control, and psychosis. Extended use can result in impaired breathing heart and lung disease.

Other facts: Commercial use is as a large animal tranquilizer. There is no antitoxin for the effects of PCP, and because of the unpredictability of its effects, it is one of the most dangerous of “street” drugs.

Synthetic Hallucinogens: LSD, PCP, ADA, MDMA, 1301~1, DMT

Drug group: Hallucinogens (synthetic)

Street names: Lunch hour trip, businessman’s special, STP ecstasy, heaven, angel dust, loveboat, lovely, hog, killer weed, acid, microdot, white lightning, blue heaven, sugar cubes

Appearance: Synthetically manufactured hallucinogens appear as liquid, capsules, or pills; or as small bits of paper soaked in liquid

Packaging: Vials, tablets, capsules, paper squares, gelatin squares, or pills in small plastic bags

Method of use: Oral or injected

Paraphernalia: Syringe, belt, or rubber hose

Duration: 4-12 hours

Dependence: Low to moderate

Possible effects: Hallucinations, distorted senses, breakdown of inhibitions, relaxation, dilated pupils, high blood pressure, fever, chills, panic, paranoia, anxiety, loss of control, loss of appetite, psychosis.

Other facts: PCP was developed for use as a large animal tranquilizer; LSD is many thousand times more powerful that other hallucinogens, and can produce “flashbacks” or reoccurring hallucinogenic experiences.

Tobacco

Drug group: Tobacco

Street names: Cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, snuff

Appearance: Dried leaf of varying texture and color

Packaging: Commercial packaging

Method of use: Smoked, chewed, or snorted

Paraphernalia: Matches and lighters, rolling papers

Duration: Time varies

Dependence: High

Possible effects: Euphoria, lightheadedness, diminished sense of smell and taste, elevated heart arid respiration rates, tingling sensation in hands and feet, chronic cough, heart and lung disease, cancers, gastrointestinal disease, eating disorders, and allergic reactions.

Other facts: Tobacco is the number three gateway drug. It is often used in conjunction with the other gateway drugs (alcohol and marijuana). The use of tobacco products is responsible for approximately 350,000 premature deaths each year. Cigarette smoke contains about 4,000 chemicals, several of which are carcinogens (known cancer-causing agents). Cigarette smoke also contains nicotine, a highly addictive substance that reinforces and strengthens the urge to smoke.

MDMA (Ecstasy)

MDMA (3-4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine) is a synthetic, psychoactive drug chemically similar to the stimulant methamphetamine and the hallucinogen mescaline. Street names for MDMA include Ecstasy, Adam, XTC, hug, beans, and love drug. In 2002, an estimated 676,000 people in the U.S. age 12 and older used MDMA.*

Research in animals indicates that MDMA is neurotoxic; whether or not this is also true in humans is currently an area of intense investigation. MDMA can also be dangerous to health and, on rare occasions, lethal.

MDMA exerts its primary effects in the brain on neurons that use the chemical serotonin to communicate with other neurons. The serotonin system plays an important role in regulating mood, aggression, sexual activity, sleep, and sensitivity to pain.

Health Hazards

Cognitive Effects – Chronic users of MDMA perform more poorly than nonusers on certain types of cognitive or memory tasks. Some of these effects may be due to the use of other drugs in combination with MDMA, among other factors.

Physical Effects – In high doses, MDMA can interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature. This can lead to a sharp increase in body temperature (hyperthermia), resulting in liver, kidney, and cardiovascular system failure.