Tips for Teens – About Steroids

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What are Steroids?
Ababolic (“building”) androgenic (masculinizing) steroids, commonly known as steroids, include the mail hormone, testosterone, and its artificial derivatives. Steroids are used for treatment of certain diseases such as specific types of anemia, some breast cancers, and testosterone deficiency. Non-medical use of steroids is strictly illegal. However, because of their performance-enhancing and body-building properties, steroids have been illegally used by both athletes and non-athletes since the late 1950s to improve their athletic ability and to look better.

Steroids are taken orally or injected into the muscles. Both males and females use steroids, though males account for higher rates of use.

According to a recent study, adolescent steroid users are also likely to use other drugs and to share needles. People who inject steroids run the risk of acquiring HIV/AIDS from sharing needles.

Side Effects
Numerous health hazards are associated with short-term use of steroids, many of which are reversible. Long-term effects are largely unknown, but there is growing concern over possible psychiatric effects. Researchers report that steroid use can cause severe mood swings which can lead to violent behaviors. Users also may suffer from paranoid jealousy, extreme irritability, delusions, and impaired judgement stemming from feelings of invincibility. Fatalities due to suicides, homicides, liver disease, heart attacks, and cancer have been reported among illicit users. Further, because the true quality of “off the street” steroids is not known, users place themselves at even greater risk for harm if they choose to use these. Major side effects include:

  • Liver tumors
  • Jaundice
  • Fluid retention
  • High blood pressure
  • Severe acne
  • Yellowing of skin and eyes
  • Trembling
  • Weakening of tendons which may result in tearing or rupture

Males:

  • Testicular shrinkage
  • Reduced sperm count
  • Infertility
  • Baldness
  • Development of breasts

Females:

  • Facial hair
  • Irregular menstrual cycle
  • Enlargement of the clitoris
  • Deepened voice

Adolescents:

  • Stunted growth due to damaged growth areas on ends of bones

Click here for valuable resource information about Steroids.

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