STEROIDS: PLAYING A DANGEROUS GAME
Have you ever thought of doing serious weight training to give yourself a better muscular build? Have you ever thought steroids would be a helpful tool in doing so? If you have you must know that steroids are a deadly and illegal drug. After reading my paper I hope that the thought of using steroids will leave your mind forever and encourage you to keep others of them.
To understand why you should stay off steroids you must first know what steroids are. The steroid of which you hear most are called, anabolic steroids. This kind of steroid is called anabolic because anabolic means, building up. They can also be called, juice (Mohun 21). They are a synthetic form of testosterone, the male sex hormone, that can be taken in pill or injection form to help increase ones muscular build. They do so by imitating how testosterone builds up muscle tissue, therefore increasing muscle mass much faster than the normal amount of testosterone that your body puts out (MacMillan 120). I know from experience that when one works out or lifts weights muscle tissue tears and has to rebuild, so taking steroids would also allow one to work out more frequently and for longer periods of time. Someone who takes steroids would be taking in ten times as much testosterone as one normally would. All of this sounds great in theory, but that is only how it helps you. Next you must know why you shouldn t use them.
Steroids have harmful effects on both mind and body. The most damaging, however, occur to the body. When a male takes anabolic steroids he can suffer acne, a high-pitched voice, hair loss, sleeping problems, infertility, and a personality disorder commonly called roid rage. Roid rage is a violent personality disorder that makes users have uncontrollable anger making them hostile around people. Females undergo changes that make them more like men due to the testosterone being in their system. They have a deepened voice, hair growth, acne, and infertility (Monroe 18,35). Also steroids turn cartilage to bone, stunting growth (Rojak 25). Many of the early side effects can be reversed but long terms ones can be very damaging (Cowart and Yesalis 2). The more serious symptoms that both sexes undergo are kidney, liver, and heart disease. Tumors can be formed in the kidney and liver due to steroid use (Monroe 35). Knowing that you can weigh the pros and cons I will now tell you why people use them in the first place.
Steroids are used by some high school students who are seeking scholarships or other rewards. Many coaches think that if the whole team is on them that their level of play can be raised 10% (Rojak 18). They are also used at the professional level to increase performance. Steroids are also illegal in the Olympic games. In 1988 Ben Johnson got his gold medal taken away when a test showed he was on steroids. Many athletes feel that if they aren t using steroids they are at a disadvantage. Now that we know why they are used, we must find out who uses them exactly.
Males make up 95% of total users, and 65% of those are athletes. The number of females using them is small now, but the number is on the rise. Children under 15 make up the largest group of first time users (Merck 275). That number is so large because of the emphasis of perfection placed on them by coaches or other influences. Children around this age also use steroids because an idol or famous athlete does.
A new kind of steroid is on the rise called androstenedione, andro, as it is most commonly called. This is not illegal in many sports because instead of injecting synthetic testosterone into their body, andro just produces a large amount of testosterone (MacMillan 120). This is a steroid that we should definitely be out on the watch for, because testing has not been finished and it may be found that it s more harmful than anabolic steroids.
In conclusion, in must be said that anabolic steroids are very harmful and should not be used by anyone for any purpose. They may sound like a wonder drug, but I assure you, using steroids will put your career and life in serious jeopardy. I also hope that after reading this you will now want to put your knowledge of this to use in warning others, especially children, about the dangers of steroids. Playing with steroids is playing a dangerous game.
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