Alcohol Named Most Destructive Drug in UK


by Peter Graham on Jul 17, 2013 | Views: 3667 | Score: 8
Harm to Others & User, combined
Alcohol72
Heroin55
Crack54
Meth33
Cocaine27
Tobacco26
Amphetamine23
Cannabis20
Ecstasy9
LSD7
Mushrooms6
Overall harm score, out of 100
Sources: sg.unimaas.nl
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Peter Graham
Peter Graham on Jul 17, 2013 11:15 AM said:

In an analysis of the relative harm of drugs in the UK, members of the Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs found the combined ratings of harm-to-others and to-the-user for alcohol the highest, making it the study's most destructive drug. Twenty categories were examined, including loss of family relationships, injury - accidental or otherwise - dependence rates, and healthcare system costs.

Anthony Sibley (AJ)
Anthony Sibley (AJ) on Jan 21, 2014 4:38 PM said:

Fascinating chart. Even more surprising than alcohol being ranked as the most harmful drug, is the magnitude of this harm. The collective destructiveness of the two legal drugs on the list, Alcohol and Tobacco, is greater than that of Shrooms, LSD, Ecstasy, Mary Jane, Amphetamines, and Cocaine... combined. It's strange that our laws would be so skewed against health realities. It begs the question, whose interests are in fact being protected?
The US alcohol industry makes $43 billion annually.

Anthony Sibley (AJ)
Anthony Sibley (AJ) on Jan 21, 2014 11:52 PM said:

Actually, I believe that is the true value of this study, from a societal perspective. The harm-to-environment is very much what should be dictating the drug laws of our government. While the consideration must be made that, because alcohol is legal, its societal detriment is naturally multiplied compared to the less used illicit drugs. However, given the current reality of our drug laws, it is imperative we realize that- regardless of the proportionality of its harm to its number of users- alcohol (mostly due to drug-effected mortality) has an extremely negative societal impact, more than any other drug. To your points on heroin, Dependence and Psychological Detriment are factored in the study. Notwithstanding "it would be necessary to increase the weight on drug-related [or] drug-specific mortality by more than 15 of 100 points before heroin displaced alcohol in... overall harm."

Ruthie S.
Ruthie S. on Apr 9, 2015 3:52 PM said:

Does this study include that the most major harm done by drugs is that they are illegal. By making an addicting substance illegal, we open the door exponentially to social injustices that reverberate to many innocent bystanders.

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