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Psyc Exam 2 Study Guide

Psyc Exam 2 Study Guide - Chapter 5 A Principal Abused...

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Chapter 5 A. Principal Abused Drugs and Their Effects a. The drugs that people use recreationally are termed psychoactive . i. Psychoactive drugs are chemical substances that modify mental, emotional, or behavioral functioning. ii. Narcotics or opiates are drugs derived from opium that are capable of relieving pain. 1. Heroin, morphine, codeine, Demerol, and methadone 2. Produce euphoria; “Who cares?” quality iii. Sedatives are sleep inducing drugs that tend to decrease central nervous system activation and behavioral activity. 1. The most widely abused sedatives are barbiturates 2. Euphoria similar to drinking alcohol. iv. Stimulants are drugs that tend to increase central nervous system activation and behavioral activity. 1. Cocaine: Natural, produces a briefer high than amphetamines. 2. Amphetamines (speed) 3. Produce a euphoria that is different from narcotics or sedatives; “I can conquer the world!” feeling. v. Hallucinogens are a diverse group of drugs that have powerful effects on mental and emotional functioning, marked most prominently by distortions in sensory and perceptual experience. 1. LSD, mescaline, and psilocybin. vi. Cannabis is the hemp plant from which marijuana, hashish, and THC are derived. vii. Alcohol encompasses a variety of beverages containing ethyl alcohol. 1. Most widely used recreational drug in our society. viii. MDMA, or “ecstasy” is a compound drug that is related to both amphetamines and hallucinogens, especially mescaline. * Look at Table 5.2 on pg. 157B
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B. Factors Influencing Drug Effects a. Drug effects can vary from person to person i. It depends on the user’s age, mood, motivation, personality, previous experience with the drug, body weight, and physiology. ii. Expectations can influence the user’s perception of a drug’s effects iii. Tolerance refers to a progressive decrease in a person’s responsiveness to a drug as a result of continued use. C. Mechanisms of Drug Action a. Psychoactive drugs work primarily by altering neurotransmitter activity in the brain. i. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that transmit signals between neurons at junctions called synapses. ii. Many theorists believe that virtually all abused drugs eventually increase activity in a particular neural pathway, called the mesolimbic dopamine pathway (reward pathway). See Figure 5.11 on pg. 159. D. Drug Dependence a. Physical dependence exists when a person must continue to take a drug to avoid withdrawal illness.
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