We are experiencing an increase in drug use in all communities in Ireland. As with alcohol, some people will go on to develop problem drug use, others won’t, but there are inherent dangers even in casual use. In 2017, there were 12,201 recorded incidents of possession of drugs for personal use, representing over 72% of all drug offences.
Within Irish society drug misuse is experienced across all communities, irrespective of gender, age, class or ethnic group. One in four adults (26.4%) used an illegal drug at least once in their lifetime (2014/15 drugs prevalence survey) with a noted increase among young people. In common with other European countries the use of synthetic drugs is increasing and poses growing public health concerns.
Similar to alcohol and tobacco misuse, drug misuse adversely impacts upon social, mental and physical health and wellbeing with the added complication of legal implications.
Tony Duffin, CEO of Ana Liffey Drug Project, said: “When someone realises that a loved one has taken illicit drugs a common response is to worry, be frightened and not know what to do or where to turn. Knowing that their loved one’s behaviour is a crime further compounds the problem and can stop people seeking help. People want to get help from a health professional for their loved one as quickly as possible.”
Over the years, policymakers, law enforcers, educators and health care workers have worked hard to encourage people not to use drugs. This approach has worked for some but not for others. It is always safest not to use drugs, however, it is important that the approach at a University level is inclusive and supports staff and students to make safe choices in relation to drug use.
More detailed and specific information on types of drugs, drug testing, legal implications etc. can be found on drugs.ie.
To plan your next quit attempt, please contact your local Stop Smoking Advisor at 065 6865841.
Appointments are available by phone, face to face or virtually.
The nearest clinic to the University of Limerick is across the road in Castletroy Health Centre.