Health Services

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Drugs & Alcohol

Read Paula’s Story


It has been said that the college years and drinking are a right of passage. That it is a period of experimentation. Wrong. It is a period of education. What seemed like a good idea at the time in many cases has resulted in tragic events including rape and death. It is my hope that this forum continues the educational process about drinking and its negative effects (STIs, pregnancy, arrests, loss of scholarships, friends and family, addiction.) People drink to feel good and have a good time. Fine, but the line in front of the danger zone is not that far away. Please proceed and educate yourself so you can make good choices. Remember, you are responsible for all of your choices. (See URI Office of Student Life/Substance Abuse Prevention Services)


Prescription Drugs

“Pharming Out” – Abuse/misuse of prescription medications

Stimulants: Ritalin, Adderall, Caffeine
Effects: increased alertness, various degrees of euphoria, decrease in appetite, energetic, anxiousness, increased temperature, blood pressure and pulse, dilated pupils, blood vessel constriction, irregular heart beat and heart failure.

Depressants: barbiturates, benzodiazepines (Valium, Klonopin, Xanax, Librium)
Effects: sedation, decreased pulse and respiration, slurred speech, impaired Concentration and coordination.

Opiods: pain relievers, Oxycontin, Percocet, Vicodin
Effects: euphoric feelings, sedation, constipation. Tolerance develops leading to increased use, leading to addiction.

“Abuse of prescription and over-the-counter drugs is at an all-time high especially common on college campuses. Think about it. All drugs illicit, prescription, and over-the-counter medicines change your body chemistry. If you take more than the recommended dose, there may be all sorts of consequences. Remember, prescription drugs do not affect all people in the same way, and drug allergies can develop at any stage in life.

Once dependent on these substances, stopping can cause withdrawal symptoms including depression, rage or anxiety. Help may be necessary to stop using, not only to prevent further harm, but also to stay safe during withdrawal.” Facts on Tap


Includes “sniffing, snorting, bagging, huffing” fumes from solvents, aerosol spray or gas dusters.

Effects: drunk or disoriented appearance, slurred speech, nausea, red or runny nose, dis-inhibited behavior, heart failure.


Stimulants: Crack, cocaine, yaba, methamphetamine, Khat
Effects: Feelings of well-being, arousal, excitation, increased focus and alertness, restlessness, loss of appetite, confusion, elevated temperature, heart rate and blood pressure, irritability, antisocial behavior, irregular respirations, convulsions, hallucinations, stroke, heart failure and sudden death.

Opiods: Heroin, morphine, codeine
Effects: Rush of pleasurable feelings, cessation of physical pain, pinpoint pupils or no response to light, lethargy, slurred speech, depressed respirations.

Hallucinogens & Dissociatives
Effects: Euphoria, unpredictable effects, distorted sense of sight, hearing and touch, distorted sense of self and time perception, impaired coordination, mood and behavior changes, audio and visual hallucinations, confusion, disorientation, increased temperature, heart rate and blood pressure, abnormal laughter, memory loss, detachment from environment.

Designer Drugs: Ecstacy (MDMA) both stimulant and hallucinogenic qualities. Described as an entacogen and empathegen.
Effects: Euphoria, peacefulness, dilated pupils, energy, confidence, increased sense of touch, taste, smell, vision and personal insight. Also, confusion, depression, sleep difficulties, anxiety, panic attacks, jaw clenching, teeth grinding, increased temperature, heart rate and blood pressure, liver damage, paranoia, neural brain damage. There are over 200 substances similar to MDMA but structurally slightly different: MDA, MDE, PMA, 2C-B, B2P, TFMPP to name a few. Most of the Ecstasy sold today is actually cut with other substances so the user actually has no idea what they are really taking.

Other designer drugs have been altered from opioids, hallucinogens, steroids, stimulants, sedatives, cannabinoids and �herbal aphrodisiacs� from Viagra.

Spice or K-2 (JWH-018) is a synthetic cannabinoid with effects similar to THC, the main active ingredient of marijuana, however, emergency departments are reporting K2 abusers

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