Alcohol as a Gateway Essays

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Alcohol and heavy drinking throughout Canada plays a distinctive role in instigating other key addictions. Drinking and consumption abuse can be linked strongly to the abuse of illicit drugs. Binge drinking should be seen as a gateway or portal to the development of poly-drug users. As the gateway drug theory suggests, routine use of less harmful drugs, in this case alcohol, will lead to risk of abusing more serious drugs. Alcohol is so readily available and like any other psychoactive drug it can be very addictive. More than 600,000 Canadians are dependent on alcohol, and nearly 200,000, on illicit drugs. Alcohol consumption needs to be portrayed as a more dangerous activity. The possible risk factors in alcohol consumption can be…show more content…
By establishing the patterns of heavy drinking we can then begin to see correlations with other sorts of rebellious behavior and risky activity. Binge drinking has been identified as a gateway to other illicit drugs. There is a strong link between alcohol consumption and the gateway drug theory. The gateway drug theory suggests that the routine use of less harmful drugs or substances may lead to a future risk of abusing more serious hard drugs. It has been found that alcohol precedes the use of cannabis as well as other drugs. Alcohol is the starting point in a vicious cycle. Cigarette and alcohol use is associated with the likelihood of marijuana use; marijuana use is in turn associated with the likelihood of other drug use. A study of a British Columbian sample group showed “43% of the sample reporting simultaneous use of both alcohol and marijuana on the previous weekend and 14% reporting simultaneous use of alcohol and cocaine” (Stockwell et al, 2007). Alcohol and drinking is observed as a fairly low risk activity among students; however, with the possible relationship to hard drugs, alcohol should be viewed more cautiously. It is becoming increasingly rare for those who use hard drugs to not have used alcohol or cannabis first. It seems that universities and youth culture are breeding alcoholics. Our culture is so focused on partying with a constant competition of who can be the
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