Health Information and Tools > Health A-Z >  Substance Use: Common drugs

Main Content

Substance Use

Common drugs

​​A drug is any substance that changes the way you think, feel, or behave.

Legal substances, such as alcohol, tobacco, and cannabis are commonly used. There are also​ illegal substances such as cocaine, LSD, amphetamines, and heroin.

Prescription medicines such as painkillers, sleeping pills, and anti-depressants are meant to be used under a doctor's supervision. But many prescription medicines are not used the way they were prescribed.

Substance use can cause problems in your life. It can affect your health, relationships, job, and finances.

Learn more:

If y​ou're concerned about your or someone else's substance use, or you want to learn more about substance use, call the Addiction and Mental Health Helpline, any time of the day or night, at 1-866-332-2322 (Alberta only).

For help to quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco, go to​.

  • ​​​​​​​​​​Next

Current as of: June 1, 2023

Author: Poison & Drug Information Service, Alberta Health Services