Club drugs is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide variety of substances, most of which are stimulants in pill form. These pills are known to provide energy and a feeling of euphoria, along with dramatically lowered inhibitions, making them popular on the dance party scene. Read on to learn more about abuse of club drugs, including the different types of drugs in this category and their effects.
Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, Ecstasy, E, X, Molly)
This drug is a type of amphetamine that lasts about three to six hours, allowing users to dance for the duration. It’s also a mild hallucinogen. Negative effects include increased risk for dehydration, hypertension, heart failure, and drastically increased body temperature. Long term abuse can lead to mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, and paranoia; difficulties with cognitive function, including confusion and memory loss, and problem sleeping.
Gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB)
Commonly used as a date rape drug, GHB depresses the central nervous system for up to four hours, causing both a sedative effect and euphoria. These effects are particularly pronounced, and much more grave, when combined with alcohol. GHB dramatically slows breathing and heart rate, often leading to overdose.
Methamphetamine (Speed, Ice, Crystal, Meth)
This substance, which can be snorted, taken orally, injected, or smoked, is an intense central nervous system stimulant. Users show agitation, excitement, and increased physical activity, along with a lack of appetite. With long term use, methamphetamine can cause dramatic weight loss, psychosis, paranoia, and damaging physical effects (particularly to the brain and heart).
Ketamine (Special K)
Commonly used by veterinarians as an animal tranquilizer, ketamine causes hallucinations similar to those caused by another drug, PCP. With long term use, memory, learning, and motor function are impaired, depression develops, and high blood pressure and other cardiac effects are common.
Like GHB, roofies are commonly known as the date rape drug. They dissolve easily in most beverages and leave no taste or odor. What’s more, they cause amnesia, and this effect is aggravated by alcohol use. The drug can also cause dangerously lowered blood pressure, hallucinations, confusion, and dizziness.
Dangers of Club Drugs
In addition to the effects detailed above, many club drugs are addictive, causing physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms. And because most of these drugs are manufactured illegally, the effects vary each time. That means that even experienced users are subject to serious health risks, including death by overdose.
If you or a loved one abuses club drugs, help is available. Substance addiction can be treated, typically with a combination of rehabilitation methods and cognitive behavioral therapy. Talk with a doctor, who can help determine the treatment methodologies that are best suited for your individual situation. While recovery is challenging, there is hope for those affected by addiction.