Although steroids do not produce a medically intoxicating effect, abuse of steroids by a growing teen can lead to serious consequences:
· Effects vary by individual, but general short-term negative effects for both sexes include hostility, aggression, and acne.8
· Steroids can have a magnified effect on teens since their bodies are still growing. Any unnatural substances, such as anabolic steroids, that are designed to physically alter a body before adulthood, can result in stunting height, and this can be permanent.9
· Males may experience shrunken testicles, difficulty or pain in urinating, become infertile or impotent, development of breasts, hair loss, and increased risk for prostate cancer.10
· Girls can experience an excessive growth of body and facial hair, male-pattern baldness, decreased body fat and breast size, changes in or cessation of the menstrual cycle, and a deepened voice.11
The long-term effects for both males and females are similarly related to extreme stresses to the body. Long-term effects include:
· High blood pressure
· Increased risk of blood clotting
· Increases in LDL (bad cholesterol)
· Decreases in HDL (good cholesterol)
· Jaundice (yellowish skin color, tissues, and body fluids)
· Liver cysts and cancer
· Kidney cancer
· Fluid retention
· Severe acne12
While steroids are not taken as mood-altering drugs, they do have potentially negative psychological effects when abused. Scientific research has shown that aggression and other psychiatric side effects may result from abuse of anabolic steroids. Many users report feeling good about themselves while on anabolic steroids, but researchers report that extreme mood swings also can occur, including hyperactivity or agitation, and uncontrolled aggression (known as “roid rage”), which can lead to violence.13
What Is Steroid Withdrawal?
Many steroid abusers feel strong and “happy” when they are using. When they stop, they can experience feelings of depression, which can result in dependence.
Researchers also report that users may suffer from paranoid jealousy, extreme irritability, delusions, and impaired judgment stemming from feelings of invincibility.14
Street or Slang Terms for Steroids Arnolds, gym candy, juice, pumpers, stackers, and weight trainers are all commonly used terms to refer to steroids.
SOURCE: Parents: The Anti-Drug8http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/pubs/brochures/steroids/professionals/index.html
10Ibid 11Ibid 12http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/pubs/brochures/steroids/professionals/index.html
CTCADA offers both adolescent intervention and treatment programs. Education, individual counseling, family therapy, group counseling and referral to other resources are all part of a comprehensive effort to prevent or intervene in youth alcohol and drug abuse. Call us at 254-690-4455!