GHB is a sedative drug commonly used in the party scene. It is a drug that causes people to feel sleepy and euphoric, and it also reduces inhibitions. GHB is sold as a colourless liquid or in capsule form; it can be very dangerous when mixed with alcohol or other drugs. GHB addiction is becoming more common today due to repeated use of the drug among clubbers.
One of the most significant problems with GHB is the fact that it difficult for users to know the strength of what they are taking. The strength varies from one bottle to the next, so overdose is common. Medical professionals typically use GHB for the treatment of narcolepsy (a sleep disorder).
GHB is a dangerous drug with potentially fatal side effects; it is capable of causing people to fall unconscious. Others may end up in a coma while some are at risk of death. Because this drug is capable of causing unconsciousness, it is commonly used by those who plan to sexually assault their victims by putting it into the unsuspecting victim’s drink. It has even been allegedly used as a murder weapon.
Stephen Port is accused of using GHB to drug and murder four men he met while on a gay dating website. He is due to stand trial in October 2016 for poisoning the four men and then dumping their bodies in East London.
Port is accused of giving each of the men lethal quantities of GHB ‘with intent to endanger life or inflict grievous bodily harm’. The four deaths took place over a period of fifteen months, but all were found in or near to the St Margaret’s churchyard in Barking.
What You Need to Know About GHB
GHB depresses the central nervous system, which makes the user feel very relaxed. It is naturally found in many of the foods and drinks we regularly consume, including alcohol and some animal meat. It has become popular on the clubbing scene, and many users have reported that it increases sexual desire and improves performance.
Unfortunately, GHB has been linked with severe side effects, especially by those who have mixed the drug with other drugs or alcohol. Because it is a sedative, mixing it with alcohol can cause people to black out. It is commonly used as a date rape drug because it is most often sold as a colourless liquid, making it easy to spike someone’s drink.
Recognising a Spiked Drink
It’s hard to tell if a drink has been spiked, and because GHB does not change the colour of a liquid, it can be hard to spot. Nevertheless, GHB has a salty taste so it could make a drink taste slightly salty. Those who notice a salty taste to their drink when on a night out should call 999 immediately. It is important to be alert to other signs that a drink may have been spiked. These can include a sudden change in mood. One may unexpectedly feel relaxed, euphoric, disorientated and sleepy. If this is the case, the emergency services should be called as soon as possible, and a trusted friend be told.
Those who repeatedly take GHB are at risk of developing an addiction to the drug. Just like other addictions, a GHB addiction can lead to devastating consequences. While some individuals are capable of taking the drug recreationally, others will develop a destructive addiction that will take over their entire lives.
Addictive behaviour includes actively seeking out the drug and being unable to control the urge to take it, even if doing so will cause negative consequences. Those who become addicted to GHB will be consumed by the drug, and when they are not taking it, they will constantly be thinking about taking it. Their desire to use the drug will become so strong that nothing else will matter. Everything in their life takes second place to their all-consuming need for the drug.
Consequences of GHB Addiction
The effect of GHB on mental and physical health is very serious. Every time someone takes GHB, his or her life is in danger because they are at risk of taking a fatal dose.
There is also the damage that addiction can do to a person’s relationships, work life and home life. GHB addiction can cause individuals to become manipulative, and many will lie to their loved ones about what they are doing. They will make all sorts of promises to stop taking the drug because they know this is what their loved one wants to hear. However, when the urge takes over, those promises are soon forgotten, and the affected person will be unable to function without the drug.
Relationships between addicts and their friends, family members and work colleagues will suffer once the addiction takes hold. It is difficult to trust someone who continues to lie to you, and this is the nature of addicts who will do absolutely anything to get what they want.
Those in direct contact with the addict will be negatively affected; one effect is that they may begin to make excuses for the person they love. Some will deny there is a problem because they cannot face the fact that someone they love could be classed as an addict. Many others are embarrassed or ashamed, and many more will blame themselves and think that there was something they could or should have done differently.
Unfortunately, GHB addiction, as with all other addictions is an illness, and it does not discriminate. Thankfully, there are many organisations around the UK working hard to make sure that those affected by this terrible illness get the help they need. For more information on how to overcome GHB addiction, contact us here at Addiction Helper today.