Essays About Drugs: Top 5 Examples and 8 Prompts

Writing essays about drugs can be challenging; read our guide to find out how to tackle your next essay.

A sheriff once asked a teenager caught with drugs in his car to pen an essay about the substances’ effects. Instead of handcuffing the 17-year-old, the sheriff took into account the kid’s future and threw him a lifeline by giving him a second chance. The 500-word essay effectively made the teenager reflect on his wrongdoings. 

There’s still an ongoing debate on the recreational use of drugs. However, their harmful effects outweigh the positive as many fall victim to drug addiction. Drugs risk many lives and relationships, resulting in dangerous living environments, mental health disorders, and other trauma. As of last year, almost 32 million people actively participate in drug use. 

Because writing about drugs includes sensitive subjects, it’s critical to demonstrate your complete understanding of the topic and cite reliable sources. Consider the essay samples below to inspire your piece.

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1. Long Essay on Drug Addiction by Veerendra

“Drug addiction impacts millions and needs to be treated carefully to prevent further harm to the individual and letting them live a better life.”

Veerendra defines drug addiction as excessive substance intake leading to various behavioral and physical changes. First, he lists drugs that increase dopamine levels, including alcohol, cocaine, nicotine, and painkillers. Then, after adding the early symptoms of drug addiction, he delves into how it impacts a person’s mental cognition, communication skills, and mental health.

When a person stops taking drugs, withdrawal symptoms follow. These signs (nausea, fatigue, and tremors) can lead to the more detrimental phase known as relapse. Ultimately, he believes that drug addiction treatments and the full support of family and friends greatly aid in overcoming addiction. You might also be interested in these articles about driving under the influence.

2. Causes of Drug Use Among Young People by Jill Nicholson

“Many curious teens have died the first time they tried certain drugs, like ecstasy. Others have found their temporary escape became a permanent addiction.”

Nicholson discusses the three leading causes of drug use: curiosity, escape, and peer pressure. Mainstream media like TV, movies and social networking sites drive curiosity. Family and friends can also precipitate interest by discussing drugs in front of youngsters.

In the next section, Nicholson explains that most young people who have problems and are unhappy with their lives use drugs to escape reality and hide behind the feel-good chemicals. The last reason young people use drugs is to look cool to impress their peers. Nicholson notes that in a circle of friends if one is using drugs, people assume everyone else is doing it. One way to help these young people is by detailing the health risks accompanying these materials, zeroing in on the chains of addiction.

3. The Failure of America’s War on Drugs by Anonymous on GradesFixer.Com

“… the United States has spent a lot of years trying to wage war on drugs. The cost has been violence, crime, corruption, the devastation of social bonds as well as the destruction of inner-city communities and the exponential development of several minorities and women ending up in jail.”

The essay focuses on the fact that despite spending billions of dollars on resources, alternative treatments, and casualties, the illegal drug trade in America continues and grows stronger. Some reason for this failure includes the public’s perception influenced by media campaigns and ill-suited punishments for non-violent and victimless crimes. 

The piece concludes that society will not benefit from anti-drug efforts as long as the government’s solution focuses on criminalization and not treatment.

4. Drugs and Alcohol Abuse: Reasons, Effects and Measures by Anonymous on EduBirdie.Com

“… drug abuse means when you use legal or illegal substances in ways you shouldn’t.”

Drug abuse refers to using chemicals to stimulate areas in the brain responsible for immediate gratification. The writer also pins down different drug types and their effects. Further, the essay accounts for users’ reasons for engaging with substance abuse (relationship complications, work pressure, and loneliness.) 

These chemical reactions deteriorate a person mentally and physically, with brain function the most affected. Exercising, consulting a doctor, eating healthy, and venting are the four measures to overcome drug and alcohol abuse.

5. Social Media Impact on Drug Abuse by Anonymous on IvyPanda.Com

“…active social media uses, especially adolescents, are more likely to try drugs because of the influence they see on the platforms.”

The essay expounds on how social media contributes to drug abuse by romanticizing their consumption. Unfortunately, these idealized posts are so rampant that drug use is socially acceptable. The steady increase of this content on social media attests to this phenomenon. 

The main encouragers are celebrities and social media influencers who advertise their wild lifestyle without regard for their followers’ ages or naivete.

If you want to learn about more essay topics, check out the best essay topics about social media.

8 Easy Writing Prompts for Essays About Drugs

1. Drug Addiction: Painkillers

Opioid addiction stems from the need to relieve pain from injury and other accidents. Unfortunately, up to 19% of these patients abuse prescription painkillers. For this prompt, research the roots of how painkillers begin as a means to heal victims to being the reason individuals suffer. Identify and explain how narcotic ruins the body. Include how people who need to take these medications can avoid getting addicted. 

2. Types of Drugs

Essays About Drugs: Types of Drugs
Discuss the most commonly abused drugs and how they affect a person

Briefly explain the different drug types to give your readers an overview of how they work. Next, discuss the most commonly abused drugs and how they affect a person. Finally, add research findings, reliable data, and news articles to strengthen your essay and make it credible. 

3. Causes and Effects of Drug Abuse

There are many pieces discussing the causes and effects of drug abuse. To make your essay stand out, compare two families with one parent addicted to illegal substances. The addict in the first family went to rehab and counseling, while the second one didn’t. List down the different futures of these families, such as how the experience resonated with the children. 

4. Drug Use Vs. Drug Abuse

A person who takes drugs to treat ailments differs from an individual who uses drugs in search of satisfying an impulse craving. Use this prompt to compare and contrast drug use and abuse and why their similarities and differences matter. 

5. Drugs and Destruction

Improper use of drugs doesn’t only ruin an individual’s psychological and physical health. It also destroys relationships and families. This destruction can be passed from generation to generation, snowballing the problem and making it more challenging to find a solution. Present this issue to discourage your readers from trying drugs.

6. Drugs as Depicted in the Movies

Leonardo De Caprio’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” is one of the most famous movies showing how people justify taking drugs. First, write a short review of this film or pick other drug-related flicks you want to review in your essay. Next, juxtapose things you notice in movies that also happen in an addict’s real life. Finally, finish your piece by sharing what you learned from the film and its main characters.

7. Depression and Drug Abuse

Another reason some turn to drugs is to run away from their mental illness, such as depression. Substance Use Disorder explains why an individual can’t control the urge to abuse drugs and alcohol. Delve more into this condition and how it rewires the brain. Include addicts’ grounds for self-medication and other risk factors that can trigger this disorder.

8. A Drug Abuse Journey

It’s not easy to share drug-related experiences. However, many get inspiration from these stories too. To connect with your readers, write about a drug abuse journey. It can be your own or from a close friend or relative. Share how it started, including the reasons and influence it left on the people involved. Conclude with the steps the person did to overcome their drug addiction and how they rebuild relationships. Finally, end your essay with how they are currently living.

Here’s a great tip: If writing an essay seems daunting, start by simplifying it to simple paragraphs first. Then, read our guide on how to write a 5 paragraph essay.

  • Maria Caballero is a freelance writer who has been writing since high school. She believes that to be a writer doesn't only refer to excellent syntax and semantics but also knowing how to weave words together to communicate to any reader effectively.