Anabolic steroids are illegal for sports enhancement and recreational use, but nevertheless, steroids are used throughout the United States. The short term effects of steroid use include a higher pain threshold and the ability to build muscle much more quickly than a person who is not using steroids. However, the long term effects of steroids and the possibility of a steroids overdose should be significant considerations for people who are considering these drugs. Steroids overdose can occur when a drug user takes a large amount of anabolic steroids, and while a fatal dose is highly unlikely, overdose can cause:
- Liver damage
- Trembling muscles
If you know someone who is using steroids on a regular basis or if you’re using these drugs, learning about their long term effects, short term effects, and treatment options is vital to understanding the risks of anabolic steroids.
The Effects Of Anabolic Steroids Use
Most steroid users take amounts of anabolic steroids that are safe in the short-term, and the risk of overdose is extremely small. In the short term, however, there are still some significant side effects of steroids use. Anabolic steroids are, after all, a synthetic version of testosterone, and adding them to a workout regimen results in many of the same symptoms as adding more dangerous testosterone injections.
Men who take anabolic steroids may become bald. Their testicles often shrink, and impotency is a common side effect. Some men experience pain when urinating and may have other painful symptoms, although reproductive symptoms are most likely.
Women who take anabolic steroids may grow facial hair and have a reduction in female sex characteristics; the breasts can shrink, for instance, and the voice may become deeper.
These effects are often ignored or downplayed by steroid users, who tend to be focused on improving their physical performance and appearance.
The Long Term Dangers Of Anabolic Steroid Use
There are a number of long term dangers of anabolic steroids that exceed the immediate dangers of using these drugs. Regular users can eventually succumb to liver failure, and higher rates of cancer have also been reported in steroid users.
The psychological effects of steroids are being researched, and there are some indications that regular steroid use can cause a litany of mental health problems. Suicide is a serious problem among steroid users, as is aggression and violence. Steroid users may also be more likely to experiment with other drugs, especially stimulants like cocaine, and this can lead to death, coma, stroke, or heart attack. Depending on the type and amount of steroids taken, other long term effects may be possible.
Seeking Treatment For Steroid Abuse
Steroid users often find it difficult to stop using steroids, even after overdosing and experiencing difficult physical symptoms. Addiction treatment can be enormously helpful for these individuals. Therapists who offer addiction treatment will help steroid abusers to stop using drugs and will steer them away from future drug use–not just steroid use. They will help to treat some of the psychological effects of steroids. Some steroid users also have body image issues which need to be approached therapeutically. Therapy may take the form of one-on-one treatment, group treatment, or any of a number of other options depending on the patient.
Stopping steroid use is essential to prevent the long-term and potentially fatal consequences of anabolic steroid use. Overdose is a significant problem, but if you or someone you know is using steroids, stopping the use of steroids is essential for overall mental and physical health.