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Opinions of Monday, 30 April 2018

Columnist: Raphael Amuri

The new coke (Tramadol) and its effects

Have you ever wondered how some people get addicted to something which adversely affects them yet seems worth dying for to others?

Drug addiction is one of such things many people see worth more than anything they own. Many sell their property or subject themselves to any means to sustain their constant usage shown mostly in movies but less in real life unless you get closer to such people. One could only imagine why but as the saying goes “little drops of water makes a mighty ocean”, well, the little desire to try it out has made many addicted to drugs with many known people making a fortune out of the business but are chased for the effect it causes to society by law sometimes.

Back in the 90’s and early 2000’s, we all thought it was coke (cocaine) that had the greatest effect on our society follow by crack (weed) all mostly categorised as opioid, but nobody really paid attention to upcoming substances that were produced in the laboratory for medicinal uses in the health industry.

Most recent abused drugs seem to have notably emanated from the lab getting into the hands of folks with no idea of their effect to their health and the effect it poses to their behaviour. One of such drugs is tramadol (I call it the new Pablo product).

This is an inexpensive medication for relieving moderate pain to moderate severe pain. Tramadol is similar to an opioid, (narcotic) analgesics and works in the brain to change how the brain feels about pain, this drug mostly has a lifetime of 6.3 hours on one’s body however it can take a day and half for the drug to completely get out of your body as research has proven. It can mostly be detected in one’s blood, hair, urine and saliva as tis one of those drugs that can quickly be detected aside Marijuana, which is the fastest that can be detected within 1 hour.

However, tramadol can be detected within 2 hours and can be detected up to 40 hours.

Tramadol has mostly been attributed with many uses like premature ejaculation, booster for your studies, relieving of pain and many personal uses as many have attributed it to. But one could only ask why is it much of a problem if it has many uses. Well, effects like Nausea, Light-headedness, Vomiting, Drowsiness and more, with some even losing their lives due to overdose of this drug yet many are yet to start the addiction process as this drug is been sold off the counters of drinking spots, unlicensed pharmacies and many other illegal agents, with the youth mostly being their target market group.

Studies in other countries have proven high school kids form almost sizeable percentage of the consumers of this product because of its easy accessibility and inexpensiveness.

Hearing stories of how two containers of this drug was impounded on by authorities at the harbour, one could only imagine how this drug could be very easy to access in the market but ask how it could be controlled. Many countries like the USA legalised this drug in 1995 to be used as a control drug but amended the laws to restrict it in 2014 but haven’t our Ghanaian authorities learnt from this or they still want to hear how the death penalty could be given to someone in Egypt for illegally bring it into their country.

Well, one could only hope for the better enforcement for a drug that even have many effects like gastrointestinal pain, diarrhoea, ringing in the ears, hallucinations, confusion and more side effect on people who want to withdraw. With this confusion and hallucinations, one could only imagine violence and crime.

Security agencies have already told us armed robbers now use tramadol to boost their active levels just as the UNODC (united nations office of drugs and crime) has stated about the effect the vast movement of tramadol into the Sahel region and its relations with mass crime around the region. It is known that many terrorist and even armed robbers in Ghana had tramadol on their bodies in some cases according to Ghana police and the UNODC. Could the recent rise in crime be associated to the abuse of this drug therefore?

With the youth getting addicted in this and the many side effects it shows and the lack of better rehabilitation facilities like in the developed countries, could we say we are safe?

We always count on our prominent agencies to lead the charge against many of our social challenges but isn’t it high time we started leading these campaigns to change the lives of people, this article may contain less to change people but could be the turning point for someone who had the intention of trying tramadol either for sexual pleasure or boost their personal activities.

Let’s join the campaign against drug abuse especially tramadol in our Ghanaian societies.