Testing For Drug Misuse
There are now many substances banned for use by the governing bodies of sports so it is essential of these organisations to have adequate and fair testing techniques in order to screen for drug use.These tests may be taken when an athlete is suspected of abusing a substance, but some are also screened for as a routine requirement of the sport.
Why Test?In order to ensure fairness in all activities and to make sure one or more competitors has no more advantage over the others, it is important to test for drugs. As the pressure to succeed and be the best in the chosen sport increases so does the temptation to achieve this by cheating.
Consideration is also given to the general health of the athlete or performer. Substances are not only banned to ensure fairness in the activity but also to protect the person from any adverse effects that may occur. Taking any of the banned substances could cause long term damage to health or even result in death depending on the substance that is being abused.These rules also exist to prevent the use of uncontrolled substances being taken without prescription. Those who supply the drugs are often breaking the law as many of them are illegally gained steroids, pain relieving medications or illicit substances.Drug testing techniques can be carried out using hair, blood, urine or fluids from the mouth or nose.
Participants should be able to complete an event on their own merit from training hard and consuming a diet that is suitable for their needs.Unfortunately as drug use becomes more sophisticated, scientists have to continually keep abreast of developments and create better and more up-to-date methods of detecting any foul play.
Accidental ConsumptionAll performers, athletes in particular are at risk of accidentally taking a banned substance and clearer information is required on the packaging of all supplements, foods and consumable goods.A good management team and coach will be able to educate the person on many of the products that contain banned substances such as medicines for coughs and colds and extra care should be taken if people are using supplements bought from an unreliable source where the ingredients may vary slightly from the claim.
Is Testing Enough?Many experts, sports performers and the general public believe that testing alone is not enough to reduce the usage of banned substances. Children should be educated at an early age, particularly those who show a keen interest or talent for sports, of the dangers of drug use. They should also be advised that a change in opinions and attitudes is essential in order to prevent them from being tempted by drug use. They should be aware that under NO circumstances is it acceptable to use drugs and that they will lose their reputation and status in the sport if they are found to be using drugs.Like a healthy diet, a healthy attitude to competitions either sporting or academic should be fostered which will also help to promote a positive body image and self-esteem for the individual.
Drug testing is unfortunately, now part of sporting activities. Many tests are carried out routinely and others are performed if there is any suspicion of cheating taking place.