Semester 2 2017

Hi and welcome to the Fith publication of the Journal of Couch Chemistry.

Students have been working hard on the articles below during this semester, with the focus being 'what are the effect of drugs on the brain and therefore a related social issue'. They welcome your comments on their individual articles. The articles also include a link to each students' public education piece which focuses on their chosen social issue. For this piece, students had complete control over the method of presentation.

Please also feel free to re-share this blog to people you think will appreciate it.

You can find out more about Couch Chemistry in the About section.

What is the effect of methamphetamine on the brain and therefore lifespan/aging? (Jack A)

The objective of this report is to acquaint and show people the ropes of the peril of taking a drug like methamphetamine and therefore the effects of their lifespan and aging. Lifespan and aging is vital to the life of humanity as the average lifespan is always preferably high and if people were let in on the risky business of methamphetamines then the amount of people wanting to use it would decrease causing our societies lifespan/aging to  increase. The average life expectancy for Australians is 81 years of age. On the other hand, when someone is a daily meth user, the average life expectancy is 7.2 years of use. This report will explore the effects of the drug and how it harms the human body, brain, and human health. Methamphetamines impact on someone's life and and the diseases that could develop when taking methamphetamine.

What is the effect of LSD on the brain and therefore mental health? (Kieren B)

The purpose of this report is to explain what the effect of LSD is on the brain and therefore mental health. LSD, or Acid as it is more commonly known as, is an illegal, uncommon, but addictive hallucinogen. Acid ruins people’s lives and those around them. It is sometimes used for people to escape their day to day lives, and reality itself. Some people can become reliant on acid and believe that they cannot live without it. In this report, we will cover information on how LSD is produced and taken, the chemical properties and structure of the drug, as well as how the it affects your brain, and how it will destroy the user’s mental health and wellbeing.

What is the effect of cocaine on the brain and therefore employment? (Eli H)

This report is an overview on the effects that cocaine as a drug has on the reward pathway and the brain of the user and how that ultimately affects their employment.
Employment outlines not only the place of work of someone but also their income. Employment plays a massive role on the lives and lifestyle of the individual and the community. The reasons employment is so important to the stability of someone's life and/or society is because of many reasons. The first being because as the financial needs rise with the economy it makes it a lot harder on people to live a good quality life without having employment, another reason employment is so important in society is because it gives a lot of people meaning; without which people would become disconnected from society and could cause a lot of problems such as drug abuse, mental illnesses (depression), distance from loved ones and friends and could even become fatal. This report goes over the explanation of cocaine and thy chemistry behind it including the way it's produced and is followed by ho reasons why employment is so important in society and finally finishing by concluding the whole report.

What is the effect of Phencyclidine on the brain and therefore Body Control? (Cassidy H)

This report will aim to explain the chemistry of the drug Phencyclidine, commonly known as PCP, and the ways in which it affects the brain, its processes and more precisely, body control and movement.

The topic of consideration is the most vital function of a human. Body control is not only simply moving muscles in a person’s arms and legs, it is every intricate movement within the body, from moving small muscles in the mouth to form speech to walking. By having the ability to control these normal functions, a person can live a normal functioning life, however, if these functions are restricted in any slight way, a person becomes separated from society as any normal task can become difficult and unbearable.

This report will discuss the history of PCP and the chemistry behind the drug, including how it is synthesised and its chemical properties. It will explain how it enters the body and then blood stream and what it does to affect the brain’s connections as well as discuss other symptoms. The report will then discuss how exactly PCP alters the brain’s ability to control the body.

What is the effect of Morphine on the brain and therefore physical and mental health? (Josh H)

The aim of this report is to inform and educate people about the effects and what (5α,6α)-7,8-didehydro-4,5-epoxy-17-methylmorphinan-3,6-diol formally known as Morphine does to the human body and how it can affect Morphine users mental and physical health. Mental health is a vital part of everyone’s everyday life because it is the way we think, feel and make choices. People who have poor mental health struggle with the basic things everyone does e.g. sleeping, work or education, friendships, relationships. Throughout this report it will outline how Morphine is made with the raw chemicals used and the chemical process, Morphine’s Chemical Properties and Functional Groups, how it can be entered into the bloodstream, what organs Morphine comes into contact with, how it affects the brain's neurons response to the neurotransmitters to the brain’s reaction of the receptors and how Morphine can affect your mental and physical health.

What is the effect of 3,4 - Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) on the brain and therefore Mental Health? (Shakara J)

The purpose of this report is to further educate individuals and outline the effects that 3, 4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine have on the user’s brain and therefore how it has an effect on the user’s mental health. MDMA is most commonly used as a street drug and associated with dance parties, festivals and social gatherings and can severely affect the user’s mental health.

MDMA has become a popular drug because of the positive effects that a user may experience, effects including feeling of mental stimulation, emotional warmth, empathy towards others, a general sense of well being and decreased anxiety. However, the long-term effects are not as delightful as the short-term effects seem. Regular use of MDMA can be the cause of a variety of mental health issues that include depression, anxiety and a lack of memory. Mental health issues as such are an issue in society already without the influence of MDMA.

Good mental health is characterised by a person’s ability to fulfil a variety of key functions and activities, including the ability to learn, the ability to feel, express and manage a range of positive and negative emotions, ability to form and maintain relationships with other people, the ability to cope with and manage change and uncertainty. Some people believe MDMA will give the user the encouragement to have the same abilities as a person with good mental health; however, those thoughts only last while the user is under the influence of MDMA.

This report will provide and summarise the effects that MDMA has on the brain and therefore the user’s mental health and what happens to the body and brain while under the influence of MDMA, I will provide an in depth explanation of the production process of MDMA, the raw materials used and the general properties, the reaction pathway, conditions and structure. As well as an explanation of how MDMA enters the bloodstream and the brain's response to MDMA and how the neurotransmitters are affected and a discussion piece on how MDMA affects the user's mental health. I will also be providing a public education piece to advise the general public on the risks associated with the use of MDMA.

What is the effect of Alpha-Pyrrolidinopentiophenone (Flakka) on the brain and therefore Physical and Mental Health (Jayse M)

The Purpose of this report is to underline what makes Flakka so popular and dangerous by comparing its effects with similar drugs.
Alpha - Pyrrolidinopentiophenone (A- PVP) commonly known as Flakka, is an illegal synthetic stimulant. It is primarily found in Europe and the United States. The drug is commonly used by teenagers looking for a rush, but the effects of the drug are violent and extremely dangerous causing chaos to both the user and the community around them. This drug can have dire and long lasting physical and psychological damages on the human body, in some cases death.

This article will underline the basics of what Alpha-PVP is, what it does to the human body coupled with its effects on the brain and also the impact it has on the general population and community. Where the drug originated and where the drug is reaching across the world. The price of the drug and the long term repercussions of long term use. The article will also show some insight on how the media has influenced the spreading of this drug and the rumors circulating it.

What is the effect of Methamphetamines on the brain and therefore Mental Health? (Lily M)

The purpose of this report is to inform the public of the effects of consuming methamphetamines and what consequences this drug has on the brain and therefore mental health.

Mental health is an important part of today's society; it determines how a person reacts to social, emotional and psychological situations. Mental health helps us to decide how we react to various situations and how we determine stress, how someone relates to others and how everyday choices are made. It is very important to have good mental health as good mental health helps people to enjoy life and cope with everyday problems. Having poor mental health is dangerous and can have serious consequences on a person as it can complicate everyday activities and invites people to make irrational decisions.

This report will go over the effects methamphetamines have on mental health. Firstly by scanning through the background information about the production process. The report will go through the general chemical properties of methamphetamine. The report will then give an in depth explanation of how methamphetamine enters the bloodstream, the chemical reactions that happen during this process and then any interferences. Finally, an explanation of the brain's response to methamphetamine. This report will then discuss what effect methamphetamine have on mental health.


What is the effect of LSD on the brain and therefore relationships? (Cassie R)

The intention of constructing this report is to inform others about the dangers and potential consequences affecting relationships after taking Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (more commonly known as LSD or acid).

A relationship is not just someone who is infatuated or in-love with another, it could also be the relationship between siblings, parents, other family members, friends, work colleagues. Not only society, but human existence in general thrives on relationships, and without them society is at risk. Without having positive relationships, it becomes difficult for a society to function and it affects everyone around the negative relationship.

Having a healthy relationship has been shown to lessen the risk of premature death by as much as 50%; another study proved to show that committing to a life partner can add another 3 years on to life expectancy. It has also been discovered that healthy relationships can offer an easier way to deal with stress. After going through a stressful time, recovery can be achieved quicker and easier once reminded of strong friendships and with the ongoing support from close friends. If someone is affected by a toxic relationship, it could potentially impact on their wellbeing, and their lifespan.

Throughout the report, information regarding the production of LSD and the physical and mental effects it has on the brain will be outlined and explained. Continuing on, the report will then discuss what a user’s LSD abuse can cause in their family, and friendships, also including the effects towards a significant other.

What is the effect of crystal methamphetamine on the brain and therefore depression? (Paige R)

The purpose of this report is to investigate how crystal methamphetamine affects the brain and therefore their depressive state, an overview of what the body's and brain's reaction is when the drug is consumed and what the drugs properties are.
Mental illness is an important subject  to our society for many different reasons. Depression is physically, mentally and emotionally challenging.

Low social support is linked to a number of health problems including depression, anxiety, susceptible to heart disease, high blood pressure and decreased immune deficiency which could, in time, have a crucial effect on our future.
The number of depression related deaths is at its highest in Australia now than it has been in the last 10 years and is now a bigger killer than car accidents. Depression is a major issue in our society and needs to be paid attention to. Unfortunately due to the number of recent fatalities in the area of drinking and drug overdoses, these critical issues of mental health are being overlooked due to the increased number of

What is the effect of Heroin on the brain and therefore physical appearance? (Zoe S)

The intention of this report is to broaden the scientific knowledge on Heroin on the brain and therefore a Heroin/opioid consumers physical appearance.

Physical appearance is important to society, for an individual's purpose. Self dignity and respect is most meaningful in overall society. For instance if a person doesn't have respect for themselves why should others? Looking presentable is more of a self conscious concern, as looking the part is how the public give their opinion on each individual. Drug abusers are usually singled out because it is easy to tell when they are intoxicated. On a physical level, using Heroin mostly impacts the skin as the users hallucinate they have bugs underneath their skin and constantly pick and scratch at it, leaving them with scarred and battered skin. Weight Loss is also affected during the use of Heroin because users don’t eat as they forget and therefore constantly lose weight as Heroin is extremely addictive. 

This report will specify the way Heroin is made, chemical properties of the drug and also key factors of Heroin on the brain and from there, physical appearance.
Images are represented for the synthesis of Heroin from Morphine, the chemical structure and brain receptors given, Heroin use.

What is the effect of ketamine on the brain and therefore mental and physical health? (Josh T)

The purpose of this report is to examine and explore the effects that ketamine has on the brain and therefore mental and physical health. Mental and physical health are a vital part of life to function and to live to a standard that is classified to be healthy. When ketamine is used, it affects your mental and physical health drastically. Mental health is defined as one’s social, psychological and emotional wellbeing. Ketamine can cause a number of mental illnesses such as depression and severe anxiety. This can lead to becoming socially withdrawn from family and friends. One’s physical health is also affected when ketamine is used. Ketamine can interfere with organs such as your bladder, lungs and heart. Ketamine is also well known for causing a disease known as gangrene which can result in loss of limbs and dead skin tissue. Mental and physical health are important to one so that they can sustain a well balanced level of health.

This report will start by looking at what ketamine is and how it is made as well as what is in the drug and some of the effects it has on the body. It well them explain the effects that ketamine has on one’s mental and physical health.

What is the effect of 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) on the brain and therefore mental health? (Bailey W)

The purpose of this report is to outline and explain the effects 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) has on the brain and therefore the effect it has on mental health.
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is a state of well-being in which every individual can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively, and is able to make a contribution to their community.                                                                                                                                         MDMA is a drug that is highly used on the ‘party scene’ that works by altering the chemical reactions in the brain (specifically serotonin described further in the report).  MDMA enhances a person's mood and often make’s someone feel more energetic and warmer toward other people. It may also change the way a person perceives experiences or time.                                                                                                                                                                                       MDMA can interfere and affect user’s mental health to a point where they can no longer function effectively or productively in society.  It can lead to the individual suffering from depression as well as a significant number of other health related problems.                                                                                                                                                                 During the course of this report I will provide a background of MDMA; its chemical properties, the production and synthesis, the reaction pathways, how it enters the body and bloodstream and its effects on the brain, chemical pathways and neurotransmitters involved as well as its effects and impacts on the user's Mental Health.

Semester 1 2017 Class One

Hi and welcome to part one of the fourth publication of the Journal of Couch Chemistry.

This semester we have had two classes of students undertake Couch Chemistry. The following posts represent the first class' work. The second class will be posted next week.

Students have been working hard on the articles below during this semester, with the focus being 'what are the effect of drugs on the brain and therefore a related social issue'. They welcome your comments on their individual articles. The articles also include a link to each students' public education piece which focuses on their chosen social issue. For this piece, students had complete control over the method of presentation.

Please also feel free to re-share this blog to people you think will appreciate it.

You can find out more about Couch Chemistry in the About section.

What are the effects of Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) on the Brain and therefore Physical Health? (Ashleigh A)

The purpose of this report is to outline the effects of Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (or GHB) on the brain, and how this drug affects the user’s physical health.
If a user continues to use GHB not only affects the brain, but it also affects the user's physical health in terrible ways.
Physical health is important to society because it can help you improve your health and reduce the risk of having different diseases like  diabetes and cancer. Physical activity and exercise can have long-term health benefits, and most importantly, physical activity can help improve your quality of life.
The outline of this report is to gain understanding of how Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) affects the brain and your physical health. This report includes the chemical properties of GHB, how it is used, and what the symptoms are of this drug in short-term uses.

What is the effect of Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate (GHB)on the brain and the physical effects that happen to the body. (Kota C)

GHB or Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (C4H8O3) is a central nervous system (CNS) depressant that is referred to as club drug or date rape drug. It is an abused substance mainly used by teenagers or young adults when they go out. It increases one’s sex drive and it increases one’s happiness/exhilaration. GHB has severe impacts on the physical health, such as muscle tremors, loss of coordination and can also have a result of death. If an individual were to die due to prolonged use of GHB or an overdose, close family and friends will be affected mentally. The wider community will also be affected as you could become a public nuisance by taking more risks than usual, having a heightened sense of touch and an increased want for sex. The report starts by explaining the chemical properties of GHB and showing GHB in its different solid forms. It then goes on to explain how GHB is taken and how it enters the bloodstream, then talks about the brain and the effects GHB has on the brain. Physical effects in the next section of this report.

What are the effects of methamphetamine on the brain and therefore Physical Health? (Jack C)

The purpose of this report is to educate people on the effects of Methamphetamine and its effects on a user’s physical health.

Physical health is important within society because it has many positive effects such as increased life span, reduced chances of developing depression, stronger muscles and better sleep patterns. Methamphetamine will stop these positive effects and will provide many negative ones.  This report will explain how Methamphetamine is produced and will show Methamphetamine’s chemical properties. This report will also explain how Methamphetamine enters the bloodstream and travels to the brain.

It will also show how the brain reacts to Methamphetamine and what parts of the brain Methamphetamine interacts with. The report will then explain what Methamphetamine does to a user’s physical health in short term and long term. The report will then end with a conclusion which will summarise the report then restate what Methamphetamine’s physical effects are.

What is the effect of methamphetamine on the brain and therefore mental health? (Jamie G)

The purpose of this report is to inform people about methamphetamine and discuss  methamphetamine's effect on the brain and therefore mental health.
The brain and mental health are very serious topics.mental health is important to society because it affects how we think, feel and act but most importantly it determines how we cope with stress and make choices that could be important with is going on out and about.
when an individual is upset then they will likely experience many problems with mood changes, struggle sleeping, tiredness, over eating and even problems regarding sexual pleasures. Mental health is important to society because it helps us get and maintain a healthy relationship, make good life choices, maintain physical health and well being and handle the ups and downs life supplies.Throughout this report you will read about many things such as an explanation of the productions including the raw materials, show the general chemical properties, learn how methamphetamine enters your bloodstream and the reactions that take place in the body and organs, learn about the brain's response to meth.
An overview of what mental health and how it affects an individual and explanation of how methamphetamine affects that person's mental health and the struggles that come with taking and after a user stops taking meth.

What is the effect of Codeine on the brain and therefore Driving? (Miko H)

The purpose of this investigation is spread influence to the community about Codeine and verify the different effects it gives the brain, body and driving.

Driving is an important role to every individuals and the society, driving is an activity that most people do every day, it helps people transport from one place to the other in fast pace. Codeine are mainly used to treat moderate pain and cough. Codeine is an addicting drug, abusing codeine can result into bad symptoms such as vomiting, feeling drunk,constipation and even more. Driving a vehicle is considered having a weapon, so when codeine is abused by a driver, the outcome would most likely be an accident putting one or more life in danger.

This report begins by clarifying the importance of driving it then explains the outcomes when taking codeine then the report shows the result when codeine is abused then it ends by describing the result when a driver abused Codeine.

What is the effect of Ketamine on the brain and therefore mental health? (Tayla H)

The purpose of this report is to educate people about ketamine and to establish the consequences on the individual users mental health. Having stable mental health is very important to society for many different reasons in many different ways. To live a more fulfilled and happy life having good mental health will make it so much easier, making people less of a burden in public. For example, if someone accidentally knocks you, rather than making a scene your strong mental health will make you realise it's a mistake and you will stay calm. To keep a stable running job in your future you’ll need so much patience and resilience, which comes with good mental health.

This report will start with the process of production of ketamine then the chemical formula and makeup. It will then continue on to the interaction Ketamine has with the brain and other body organs. The report will finish off with a final discussion about how Ketamine affects a user's mental health.

What is the effect of synthetic cannabinoids (synthetic marijuana) on the brain and therefore the effect it has on the user's social behaviour? (Tim H)

The purpose of is report is to explore the chemical structure of synthetic cannabinoids, how it affects the brain and therefore the social behaviour side effects that users of synthetic marijuana experience, also why people on this drug are a danger to the general public.
Synthetic cannabinoids, commonly referred to as synthetic marijuana, K2, spice, incense or simply fake weed was a drug originally created to mimic the effects of marijuana. Now it is a lot more dangerous because of all the other chemicals that are being added to it nowadays to make the effects more intense. Some people might not be as familiar with this drug and its effects as they should be.
Social behaviour is very important in society in fact it basically is society, people who use synthetic marijuana often develop very poor social skills because there generally secluded in their house not communicating with anyone.
Many people see synthetic marijuana and compare it to just normal marijuana or even a better alternative, that's how a lot of users become addicted to it, from thinking it’s a safer alternative than regular marijuana, but that's where they are wrong. Synthetic cannabinoids are actually one of the most dangerous drugs on the planet currently. Research says that a lot of ice users are scared of it.

What are the effects of cocaine on the brain and therefore mental and physical health? (Blake K)

To discover what effects cocaine has on our mental health and the physical effects we counter when taking this drug. This practical report will examine and restate key areas and terms on cocaine and the problems it causes not only to whom but the society. Discovering different chemical reactions and pathways that occur in the synapse and why this causes dysfunction.

Cocaine is a lethal overused drug, causing families to break up and struggle to blend in with normal social society. Destroying thousands of people's lives and damaging mental health, this drug is abused all over the world.

Having bad mental health not only causes families to have more fights and breakups, but also leads to stress and low self-esteem. To keep a good mental health you must have an all-round nutritious  diet. Exercising can improve ones sense of wellbeing and keep you energized. Staying off drugs not only helps you mentally but can also physically improve your feelings and sense of belonging. Bad health leads to bullying and social problems. Maintaining a good mental health does not just mean eating the right vitamins but you need also to keep a good diet. Finance and money are also wasted when spending your savings on un-needed short term highs, which leads to lung cancer, loss of hair and rotting teeth.


What is the effect of methamphetamine on the brain and therefore sports performance? (Zac M)

The purpose of this report is to explain the effects of methamphetamine on the brain and therefore sports performance. Methamphetamine, or ice as it is more commonly known, is an extremely common and addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system and can severely affect a person's sports performance. Regular use of ice can lead to many changes in sports performance including alertness, decreased sense of fatigue, mood elevation and increased self confidence. Regular use can also damage the brain's reward system making it so that the user can’t feel the normal everyday feelings without using methamphetamine further altering sports performance.
As it is, ice is already a major problem in society without being used to enhance sports performance. Ice is most commonly used amongst 18-25 year olds, when athletes of any level are generally starting their sporting careers. Methamphetamine is not usually taken at a party but rather in privacy or with only a couple of friends.
This report will provide information on how methamphetamine is synthesised and the chemical properties of the drug, as well as providing information explicitly about how the drug collaborates with the brain and the devastation it can cause to a user’s sports performance.


What are the effects of Desomorphine/Krokodil on the brain and therefore Physical health? (Lachlan M)

The purpose of this report is to warn and inform anyone who may be reading of the potential dangers of this incredibly addictive and dangerous drug before they, or someone they may know, is exposed to it.
Physical health is a pivotal part of human existence and how society functions. People with poor physical health are generally unhappy with their lives and are more prone to depression and other mental health issues. Even if just a small portion of a society is physically unhealthy then funds and resources must then be diverted from other important issues to increase health-care for those struggling with bad physical health. Physical health is what makes a society run and when a society falls victim to a drug such as desomorphine the result can be a total collapse of said society (as illustrated by the current state of provincial Russia with 30,000 deaths yearly caused by the drug). This is why it is important to warn people of the horrifying physical effects.
This report will analyze and explain how desomorphine is being made at home and the chemical structure of the drug and how those chemicals react with the brain. It will then discuss how this affects physical health and society in general and will then conclude all of the findings.

What is the effect of methamphetamines on the brain and therefore mental health? (Harriet M)

One of the gifts in life is to experience pleasure which methamphetamines will no doubt give you it, but 1 thing people need to consider is that it will ruin your mental health. Methamphetamines also known as ice, speed or crystal meth has many names on the street. It is a cheap drug that takes over many peoples lives. It affects the mental health in several ways such as damage to the brain and the way you think. Methamphetamine  is so powerful that it can cause addiction the first time it is used, it is a feel good drug that affects the brain by releasing lots of dopamine. Methamphetamines is addictive because when high on methamphetamines it causes a pleasurable experience which doesn't last forever leading to addiction. Mental health is damaged due to methamphetamine being so addictive which mental health is in danger because you'll start to develop mental illness. Methamphetamines is an illegal drug that is highly addictive and affects the nervous system. It causes the brain to have several hallucinations which last up to 12  hours.


What is the effect of 3,4-Methylenedioxyphenethylamine (MDMA) on the brain and therefore mental health? (Dylan M)

The reason for this report is to outline and explain the effects that 3,4-methylenedioxyphenethylamine (MDMA) has on the brain and therefore the effect it has on the user’s mental health. The drug MDMA is a very highly used party drug that ruins users’ mental health to a severe extent. MDMA creates larger distribution levels of serotonin and also a lesser release of dopamine. Some of the problems that this might cause are users mood, sleep and appetite can be severely affected. All of these can lead to depression. Depression is already a big problem in today’s society and anything that increases this problem will be a very big issue. Mental health is about working to your full capability being able to focus. Sure people will be stressed, angry, feeling down and tense but that’s just how life is. If those signs persist for a long period of time or it interrupts that person's daily routine it would not be good for their mental health and be concerning that they might have some sort of mental health problem. Good mental health would be being able to cope with those different feeling on a day to day basis whether that is studying for school or working but if you can do that it would mean that you have good mental health and there shouldn’t be any problems.    
Firstly this article will look at the history of the drug, how it is made, the chemical formula and properties, how it affects the brain then how it affects the user’s mental health.