Drug testing has hit the news again, with random testing on contestants for the hit ITV show, Love Island. It’s been widely reported that many of the 2019 Love Island contestants have now been axed. This is after failing to pass surprise drug tests, ahead of the new series airing in June 2019.
Several Love Island hopefuls have been left gutted after failing to pass an unannounced drug test and reportedly getting the boot from the new series. Contestants had to undertake both Psychological and Drug tests to eliminate those “mentally at risk” from entering the show. Reportedly, the first time for testing the potential contestants for drugs and it was done on a random/unannounced basis. The contestants had to provide a urine sample. The show stated that “they wanted everyone to be mentally and physically healthy”. There was no warning and many of the Love Island contestant hopefuls tested positive. Some of the drugs included Cannabis, Cocaine and Ketamine, after a wild weekend of partying. This was the end of the road for the hopefuls who were looking for “love” and “fame”.
Similarly to the issues surrounding the surprise and immediate cancellation of the Jeremy Kyle Show this month. Love Island has also come under fire and its after-care for contestants was criticised following the death of Mike Thalassitis in March 2019. Mike had taken his own life just a year after series two contestant Sophie Gradon committed suicide in 2018.
This is an interesting and courageous step by ITV, as they risked losing many of the “final line-up”. It’s also caused repercussions with the show having to change things last minute. However, it further goes to spotlight the obvious links between drug use and mental health – never mind physical health.
With many employers, organisations and treatment services embracing the benefits of random drug testing, it is no surprise that this valuable tool is being employed in other areas. Some may say, “if you have nothing to hide… “.
The UK has always had a serious alcohol problem, what hapens when cocaine and alcohol are combined? Binge drinking culture is rampant to this day, with UK citizens being drunk more often than any other country. As most know, the party context within which cocaine is often used means many consume the drug alongside alcohol; over half of cocaine users do, in recent studies. The problem here is significant. When cocaine is consumed alongside alcohol, both of the substances are metabolised at the same time in the body’s liver. When this happens, cocaethylene is formed. When this accrues inside us, it can pose a serious & direct threat to the function of our cardiovascular systems.
We often get asked “what is the level of drug use in the UK really like?”. It has been shown that workplace drinkers are more likely to be men than women, managers rather than their staff and single as apposed to being married. Alcoholism and drug dependence can lead to lowered productivity within the workplace, with increased levels of absenteeism and sick leave, accidents and injuries, including fatal accidents and even premature deaths. Substance abuse is linked to 60% of all poor performances and 40% of industrial accidents at work. 83% of employees who have had a hangover at work admit that it affected their productivity, 33% admit to having gone to work with a hangover, and 22% admit to having made mistakes at work because of a hangover.
Running red lights, driving at high speeds, crossing center lines into the other lanes, getting into accidents and even hitting pedestrians. A new study found these were some of the dangerous driving behaviors of regular, heavy users (4 or 5 times per week) of recreational weed who began using before the age of 16. Here's the catch: users drove this badly even when they were no longer “high”. At the time of driving experience, the marijuana group had not used for at least 12 hrs. Despite having little THC in their system, heavy users consistently performed worse on driving tasks than non-users. This can result in them making critical, dangerous mistakes. And when they looked at the cannabis users & separated those into early (before age 16) versus later onset of use, almost exclusively these differences between the 2 groups were attributed to the early onset group.