Drug Abuse in China: Past, Present and Future

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Following British importation of opium to China in 1760s, the use and production of the drug in China increased dramatically. This situation was aggravated after the failure of Opium Wars that occurred between the United Kingdom and the Qing Empire in China with the aim of forcing China to import British Opium; this war made China open the door to a free flowing opium trade, with disastrous social and public health consequences. The subsequent rise of the new China created drug-free atmosphere by strict legislation and punishment, in which drug use greatly decreased. However, in the context of governmental reform and the open-door policies of the 1980s, drug abuse has re-emerged as a major public health problem. Today, drug abuse is highly linked to the spread of HIV/AIDS and to drug-related crimes in China. To combat the severe drug problem facing the nation, the Chinese government has adopted the Methadone Maintenance Treatment program, a multi-faceted therapeutic approach that aims to reduce the health and social problem induced by drug epidemics. In addition, traditional Chinese medicine, including herbal therapy and acupuncture, both found to be effective in the prevention of relapse and causes few side effects, making them useful for the treatment of opiate addiction. With continuous application of these therapies and managements that have been proved to be effective in harm reduction in the western countries, we believe that drug abuse and its related problems in China will be brought under control.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles