Medicines Are Legal Drugs
If you've ever been sick and had to take medicine, you already know about one kind of drugs. Medicines are legal drugs, meaning doctors are allowed to prescribe them for patients, stores can sell them, and people are allowed to buy them. But it's not legal, or safe, for people to use these medicines any way they want or to buy them from people who are selling them illegally.
Cigarettes and Alcohol
Cigarettes and alcohol are two other kinds of legal drugs. (In the United States, adults 18 and over can buy cigarettes and those 21 and over can buy alcohol.) But smoking and excessive drinking are not healthy for adults and off limits for kids.
When people talk about the "drug problem," they usually mean abusing legal drugs or using illegal drugs, such as marijuana, ecstasy, cocaine, LSD, crystal meth and heroin. (Marijuana is generally an illegal drug, but some states allow doctors to prescribe it to adults for certain illnesses.)