Drugs and the Nervous System Study Guide


Drugs, their consumption, and the nervous system are correlated. Human bodies have natural drugs and pathways that can make us feel happy or provide relief when in pain. For example, endorphins are naturally produced drugs in the body. The drugs react and travel in the body through the central nervous system and activate the body’s opiate receptors, thereby causing feelings of euphoria or inhibition of pain.

What are drugs?


  • A drug is a chemical substance used for prevention, treatment, or cure of a disease or to alleviate the symptoms.
  • The drugs used for medicinal purposes can be purchased over the counter from medical stores.
  • In contrast, some medications can be bought only when prescribed by a doctor through a prescription.
  • One can take drugs orally or by inhaling, through injections, even with the help of a skin patch.
  • Sometimes drugs also refer to a restricted or illegal substance that an individual uses to get high, leading to addiction or recreational purposes. This is generally known as drugs of abuse, which contributes to physical aggression or sexual assault.
  • There are serious consequences faced by teens and adolescents when they abuse drugs and alcohol.
  • Based on the symptoms and the required cure, a doctor can prescribe drugs for anxiety, drugs that make you sexually active, drugs that make you lose weight, or other lifelong ailments and their treatment.

What are drug interactions?

  • Drug interactions can occur when two or more drugs are consumed together.
  • It can lead to an increased or decreased impact on the body or lead to side effects.
  • Drug interactions have different categories like minor, significant, serious, or contraindicated.
  • Hence, it is crucial that drugs you should try only after consulting your doctor.

Drug InteractionsSource

  • Doctors recommend tests for samples taken from blood, urine, or hair and use the test results to treat the condition of the symptom in a person’s body.
  • Thus, doctors decide the names of the drugs that need to be administered to a patient for treatment from a long drug list widely available through different pharmaceutical companies.

What is the nervous system?

  • The nervous system definition is a complex network of neurons that transmits information in different parts of the human body.
  • The center point controls mental activities, memory, learning consciousness, knowledge, and thinking. T
  • he brain, spinal cord, and sensory organs for the nervous system organs.

The nervous system diagram below clearly depicts the nervous system parts:

How do drugs affect the nervous system?

  • The impact of drugs impacts the most integrated system of a body, i.e., the nervous system.
  • Its effect can lead to speeding up or slowing down of message transmission between the brain and the body
  • Drugs interact with the brain receptor, therefore, hindering the normal functioning of the nervous system
  • The short-term effects of drugs can vary among people. It can lead to anxiety, high blood pressure, paranoia, and even heart attack
  • Long-term use of drugs can impact the proper functioning of the nervous system.
  • It can lead to tissue or nerve damage, delay in neuron transmission, reduce the potential of functioning of vital organs and lead to brain damage.
  • Repair of the central nervous system (CNS) is possible through medication, cell replacement, reconstruction of damaged neural tissue, or rewriting of the CNS



  • Drugs are to be used for medicinal purposes only and advised by your healthcare provider.
  • Drugs can affect the most important structure of our body, the nervous system, for better or worse.
  • Do not indulge in any drug abuse as it can impede the functioning of the nervous system and cause damage to the brain and other vital organs in the body.


1. What exactly is a drug?

A drug is a chemical substance used for prevention, treatment, or cure of a disease or to alleviate the symptoms.

2. What drugs affect the nervous system the most?

Drugs like heroin, cocaine, alcohol, cannabis, amphetamines affect the nervous system the most. Sedatives, anesthetics, antiemetics, analeptics, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, pain relievers like narcotic analgesics, etc., are drugs that act on the central nervous system.

3. What are the 4 main types of drugs?

The 4 main types of drugs are:

  • Stimulants
  • Depressants
  • Opium related painkillers
  • Hallucinogens

4. What are the 8 types of drugs?

The 8 types of drugs are as below:

  • Prescription drugs
  • Stimulants
  • Depressants
  • Opioids
  • Cannabinoids
  • Inhalants
  • Hallucinogens
  • Steroids

5. What are Schedule 6 drugs?

Schedule 6 drugs are at the bottom of the list of highly addictive drugs. These do not include any medicines or prescriptions. The most common schedule 6 drug is marijuana, including other alternative medicines like poppers (amyl nitrite), spray paint (toluene), and nitrous oxide (found abundantly in aerosols).

6. What is a Class V drug?

Class V drugs are substances with very low potential to be used as drugs of abuse. Class V drugs are used for analgesic and antidiarrheal purposes.

7. What is a Class 3 drug?

Class 3 drugs have substances that have a potential for high psychological dependency and moderate to low physical dependence. Examples are steroids, depo-testosterone

8. What are the 4 main functions of the nervous system?

The 4 main functions of the nervous system are as follows:

  • Response generation
  • Noticing and receiving sensations like smell, taste, sound, and vision
  • Marinating homeostasis that includes regulation of circadian rhythms, blood pressure levels, pain, temperature, vibrations, etc
  • Integrating and processing the sensory information of different parts of the body.

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  1. Structure and Function of the Nervous System. https://open.oregonstate.education/aandp/chapter/12-1-structure-and-function-of-the-nervous-system/. Accessed 25 Nov, 2021.
  2. Nervous system. https://www.kenhub.com/en/library/anatomy/the-nervous-system. Accessed 25 Nov, 2021.
  3. 7 Drug Categories. https://www.theiacp.org/7-drug-categories. Accessed 25 Nov, 2021.
  4. Introduction to the Nervous System. https://training.seer.cancer.gov/anatomy/nervous/. Accessed 25 Nov, 2021.

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