How do we understand drug use? How are drugs related to our social worlds? How should drug use be understood, approached and dealt with? Insightful and illuminating, this book successfully discusses drugs in social contexts. In an elegant manner, the authors bring together their different theoretical and practical backgrounds, offering a comprehensive and interdisciplinary introduction that opens up a wide scientific understanding moving beyond cultural myths and presuppositions. Powerful and engaging, this book discusses main questions within the field of psychoactive drugs research, such as: Why do people take drugs? How do we understand moral panics? What is the relationship between drugs and violence? How do people's social positions influence their individual involvement in drug use? This is an invaluable reference source for students on criminology, sociology and social sciences programmes, as well as students and drug service practitioners in social work, social policy and nursing.
Chapter 6: Polydrug Use/Polysubstance Use
Definitions of polydrug use vary but generally refer to the purposeful consumption of two or more psychoactive substances in order to enhance, reduce or extend the effects of each other. Polydrug use may be distinguished from polysubstance use in that polydrug use includes at least one drug which is controlled, whereas polysubstance use includes at least one drug which is legal, usually alcohol.
Polydrug use is the practice whereby two or more psychoactive substances are purposefully consumed together. The definitions and features of polydrug use vary, depending on the minimum number of drugs included, the legal status of each drug, route of ingestion, the combinations involved, the time frame of consumption, the sequence of consumption, agency/intentionality in the selection of ...