Alcohol and drugs affect athletes

Stephanie Perez, Reporter

THE USE of drugs and alcohol is a huge influence on high school students. Although many think drugs only have a short-term effect, they can have long term effects and consequences as well. Whether it comes from peer-pressure, or simply the desire of doing it, the effects may be terminal or lead to major consequences later on in life.

Some athletes may use substances to lose weight, while others do it for a high. Substances such as OxyContin and Vicodin are used as painkillers, however, the purpose of the drug can easily be abused.

For example, an injured athlete can use Vicodin to help with the pain. Desperate for relief, the athlete takes more than the prescribed dose, and unintentionally overdoses.

“I believe that the influence of drugs and alcohol is bad for student athletes. Not only does it affect them on the field, but in the long run. Off the field as well,” Alejandro Bueno (12) said.

Although many believe that the effects of drugs are only temporary, they aren’t. Students at Granger have experienced peer pressure that makes them do drugs. However, knowing the risks of consuming is important.

“Personally, I don’t know anyone that has consumed drugs before a game, but even then, you never know. It can still happen,” Bueno said. Not many know those who are consuming drugs, but if anyone knows someone who does, it is important to inform them of the effects of their decisions. “I am one of Granger’s soccer keepers, and I know that if I were to consume before a big game it will affect how I would play. For example, I won’t be as energized, and my performance would go down by a lot,” William Perez (12) said.

However, it’s not only about consuming before heading to the field, but outside of school as well. Drugs are still affecting students once they leave campus, or prior to their arrival. No matter the amount, or what type is being consumed, there is no going back after doing it once.

Taking medication to lose weight, creates an increase of serotonin and norepinephrine, which allows consumers to feel full. However, kids are not consuming the nutrients the body needs on a daily basis. Some antidepressants such as, escitalopram, duloxetine, and bupropion cause weight loss. Stimulants are the drugs more often abused, such as methamphetamine and ecstasy that naturally cause consumers to lose weight.

“There are some boys on the team that like to lose weight before season, but we all know to do it the right way by taking proteins and everything the body needs,” Bryan Zapata (11) said.

“Consuming drugs is like taking your life away, in other words,” Perez said. Most drugs have the ability to affect a consumer’s mood. Specifically, ecstasy, alcohol, and cannabis. Most of the mood swings are temporary, but the overuse can cause brain cells to die. Therefore, drugs or alcohol should never be used, no matter the reason to do so.