What are medicines and drugs?

Learn about drugs and medicines.

Are some drugs harmful?

Most drugs are used to help someone get better if they're ill, and we call them medicines.

Medicines and drugs can be harmful. You should always check with a doctor or an adult you trust before taking them.

Some drugs can be addictive. This means they make you feel like you can’t live without them, even though they may be causing damage to your body.

Alcohol and cigarettes

Alcohol is a drug that can be found in drinks such as beer, cider and wine.

Cigarettes contain lots of different things, including tobacco. Tobacco can damage your lungs and heart as well as cause your body to develop deadly diseases like cancer. The drug found in cigarettes is nicotine. Nicotine is very addictive, which is why some people find it hard to stop smoking.

E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that create water vapour (a kind of gas). This water vapour doesn’t contain tobacco but it does contain nicotine.

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