“This is the most addictive drug I’ve ever seen. People are desperate to get off of it because it’s destroying their lives.”
~ Dr. Stephen W. Smith, an ER doctor at Hennepin County Medical Center, Minneapolis
Some say it is “easy to buy as a pizza”. Although it is illegal, GHB is openly sold online, often deceptively labeled as “ink stain remover”, “fish tank cleaner” or some other innocuous-sounding product.
Like other synthetic drugs, GHB is a “niche” substance of abuse. While it is not as widely-used as other illicit drugs, there is a growing core of abusers who use it as a “party” or “club” drug.
GHB – A Social Drug
GHB –“gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid” – is used medically treat narcolepsy. In small recreational doses, it is a stimulant, while at higher doses, it is a depressant. User-reported effects include:
- Increased sociability
- Greater affection
- Enhances sexual pleasure
- Deepened appreciation for music
GHB takes effect in 15-30 minutes, and lasts up to 6 hours.
Street Names for GHB
The most common name for GHB is “Liquid Ecstasy”, but it is also known as:
- Grievous Bodily Harm
- Georgia Home Boy
- Easy Lay
- Liquid X
GHB and Date Rape
GHB is sold most often as an odorless, colorless, and virtually tasteless liquid that is mixed with a soft drink or cocktail, frequently without the other person’s knowledge. The victim experiences:
- Increased sexual desire
This combination leaves the victim vulnerable to violence or sexual assault.
Side Effects and Dangers of GHB
Side effects of GHB range from unpleasant to dangerous to even deadly:
- Profuse sweating
- Slurred/unintelligible speech
- Slowed heartbeat
- Liver/kidney damage
- Respiratory depression
Illicit GHB is often “homemade” – different batches vary widely in terms of potency, purity, and even content. Some “recipes” call for dangerous chemicals like floor stripper or drain cleaner.
Is GHB Addictive?
GHB withdrawal can be harshly unpleasant:
- Profuse sweating
- Rapid heartbeat
- High blood pressure
This makes it unlikely that a GHB addict will be able to quit on their own. Professional intervention is almost always needed, in the form of medically-supervised detox and ongoing treatment.
If you live in Southern California and you are worried about the impact that GHB or other party drugs are having on your life, Lasting Recovery outpatient drug rehab in San Diego can help.
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