Drug Facts

We Give You The Facts


  • Marijuana use has been linked to health problems, both physical and mental, including: chronic coughing, chest colds, lung infections, breathing problems, cancer, depression, anxiety, and personality disturbances. Just because it comes from a plant does not mean it is harmless.
  • Marijuana use affects co-ordination and slows reaction time, putting users at increased risk for injury or death resulting from car crashes or other accidents.
  • Marijuana smoke deposits four times more tar in the lungs and contains 50 percent to 70 percent more cancer-causing substances than tobacco smoke does.
  • Regular marijuana use, especially when young, can lead to an increased risk of developing a psychotic illness like schizophrenia later in life.
  • Frequent use of marijuana may lead to fertility problems in men and women.
  • Know the law. It is illegal to buy or sell marijuana. Even holding small amounts of the drug can lead to arrest or fines.
  • Blood-shot eyes, dry mouth, loss of interest in personal hygiene or appearance, and brown or burnt fingertips are all signs of marijuana use.
  • Marijuana can be addictive. While not everyone who uses the drug becomes addicted, some persons do develop signs of dependence.
  • Marijuana is not always what it seems. It can be laced with other substances, including cocaine, without your knowledge.
  • Long-term marijuana use may affect memory and concentration levels, which in turn can hinder performance at school and work.
  • Marijuana can negatively affect a driver’s attentiveness, perception of time and speed, judgment and coordination, increasing their likelihood of being involved in an accident.
  • Research has shown that drivers who consume cannabis within three hours of driving are more likely to cause a vehicle collision as those who are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Smoking marijuana when consuming alcohol can be dangerous, as alcohol may increase the effect which marijuana has, resulting in persons becoming too intoxicated, being less aware of their surroundings and being unable to maintain control of situations.


  • Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol in a short space of time, also known as binge drinking, can lead to alcohol poisoning which can make you unconscious or even kill you.
  • Long-term alcohol use can lead to sleep disorders, liver disease, heart disease, stomach problems and depression. Heavy drinkers can also have difficulty managing diabetes and high blood pressure.
  • Extreme confusion, inability to be awakened, vomiting, seizures, slow or irregular breathing, low body temperature and bluish or pale skin are all signs of alcohol poisoning. If you think someone has alcohol poisoning, call an ambulance or get them to the hospital immediately.
  • Alcohol use impairs judgment. Persons who are under the influence of alcohol are more likely to take risks they would not take when they are sober, like driving under the influence and having unprotected sex.
  • Regular alcohol use can lead to weight gain and obesity as alcohol is high in calories.
  • Drinking alcohol can affect personality and make persons angry, moody and/or aggressive when drunk. Such changes in behaviour can have a negative effect on a person’s relationships with their family and friends. 
  • Even moderate levels of drinking (2 drinks for men and 1 for women) can be too much in some situations. Avoid alcohol if you are: pregnant or trying to become pregnant, planning to drive or operate machinery, taking medications that interact with alcohol or managing a medical condition that can be made worse by drinking.
  • Drinking during pregnancy can harm your unborn baby and may lead to premature birth and low birth weight as well as a wide range of birth defects, vision or hearing problems, learning disabilities, speech and language delays and behavioural problems.
  • Even after a person stops drinking, the alcohol already in the stomach and the intestine continues to enter the bloodstream and affect the individual.
  • Mixing energy drinks with alcohol may cause cardiopulmonary or cardiovascular failures which can lead to death.
  • The stimulant effects of energy drinks can prevent an alcohol drinker from realizing that he or she is drunk, resulting in what is known as the ‘wide awake drunk’.  This effect can last for up to 12 hours and increases the chances that persons will: drive drunk, ride with a drunk driver, become injured or need medical attention.
  • Both alcohol and the caffeine found in energy drinks are diuretics. Consuming them together creates a diuretic overload which can cause life-threatening dehydration.
  • When you consume alcohol and energy drinks together, you are twice as likely to lose your life, get injured, need hospitalization or hurt someone else.
  • Research has shown that when you consume energy drinks mixed with alcohol, you are three times more likely to get drunk compared to when you consume alcohol alone.
  • There is no safe amount of alcohol when you are driving.  Impairment starts with the first sip; so if you are planning to drink, be sure to have a designated driver.


Many prescription medications act on systems in the brain that could impair driving ability. When abused or taken without medical supervision, these can increase the risk of being involved in an accident.


Cocaine use can change people’s behaviour. It can make persons feel powerful and confident which can lead to aggressive or violent behaviour. It can also make them take risks, such as having unprotected sex or driving under the influence.