Steroids or anabolic steroids are lab-manufactured versions of testosterone, a male-dominated hormone. They are often abused to enhance physical appearance, improve athletic performance and promote muscle growth. As they help increase muscle mass, they are sometimes prescribed to cancer patients and those suffering from HIV showing problem of muscle deterioration. They are also prescribed by doctors to heal sports injuries and are not usually taken for their psychoactive effects.
Classified as Schedule III substance by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), steroids are available as tablets, capsules, gels, creams and various water-based and oil-based injectable solutions. The dosage of steroid abuse is often 10 to 100 times higher than the approved dosage for therapeutic and medical reasons. Commonly knowns as Juice, Pumpers, Roids and Weight Gainers, they are often bought and sold online and in school gyms and during body-building competitions.
Teen years are marked by ongoing brain development and lot of physical, emotional and mental changes. Increasing peer pressure, influence of social media and world of glamor can generate feelings of low self-worth and insecurity among young people. In a desire to look good and gain social acceptance, they may use steroids. Abuse of anabolic steroids is an increasing problem in young boys and girls who hope to get an edge in college sports and other sporting events through steroids. Little do they know that using the drugs for nonmedical reasons can have serious physical and mental consequences.
Signs of steroid abuse
Associated with a wide variety of adverse health effects, including acne, excessive body hair, breast enlargement, heart diseases and liver enlargement, many of these are often irreversible and life-threatening. Depending on the method of abuse, other effects include red and inflamed injection marks on the skin and strange odor in case of misusing steroid creams. The treatment usually starts with steroid detox treatment.
Here are some other signs of steroid abuse:
- Reversal of good and bad cholesterol levels
- Enlargement of the heart’s left ventricle
- High blood pressure
- Heart attack
- Hepatitis or HIV from shared needle use
- Shrinking of testicles
- Enlargement of clitoris