What Are Teen Club Drugs?
Club Drugs refer to a group of psychoactive drugs often found and used at bars, night clubs, concerts, and parties. Some of the most common teen club drugs include: GHB, Rohypnol, Ketamine, MDMA (Ecstasy), Methamphetamine (Meth), and LSD (Acid.)
GHB is a depressant drug approved to treat narcolepsy (a sleep disorder) and misused as a recreational drug for its intoxicating effects. Its restrictions for narcolepsy treatment are very strict and usage allowance is much lower than usually administered by someone abusing the drug. GHB can be found in colorless, tasteless forms, and so is often taken mixed in with alcoholic beverages. Because it’s difficult to detect, it’s also known to be used as a “date rape” drug, by intoxicating and incapacitating unknowing victims. GHB is also sometimes used by bodybuilders for its protein-building capabilities, as an effort to reduce body fat.
Repetitive use of GHB can have serious and long-lasting health effects. Repeated use can cause withdrawal effects as well as addiction and dependency. GHB can cause seizures and coma in some people, and when combined with alcohol, can create difficulty breathing. There are no GHB detection tests in hospitals and it remains an elusive drug to detect, and therefore, difficult to treat. Because of this, treatment for addiction or abuse of GHB usually takes place in a residential treatment facility, where the person can be monitored while going through withdrawal, and making efforts toward recovery from the drug.
Rohypnol is a Sedative-hypnotic drug, similar to Valium or Xanax, but is unapproved for medical use in the U.S. It’s usually taken in pill form, either ground up and snorted or swallowed. Rohypnol can be fatal when mixed with alcohol and/or other depressants.
Ketamine is an anesthetic drug, usually used in veterinary practice. It’s used for its intoxicating effect and, like GHB, is found in a colorless, tasteless form and so, is often taken with alcohol. Because it’s a dissociative anesthetic, it distorts senses such as sound and sight, producing a sense of detachment from experience. At low doses, ketamine can cause impairment to memory, learning, and attention. At higher doses, it can cause dreamlike states, hallucinations, delirium, and even amnesia.
Similar to cocaine addiction, some users of Ketamine can develop a tolerance for the drug, requiring them to take increasing amounts to produce and maintain their high, resulting in serious abuse and dependency on the drug.
Residential treatment is often required for people who have teen club drug abuse treatment, predominantly because withdrawal from these drugs can be life-threatening. Because of this, people need to be closely monitored and cared for during the different stages of detoxification, especially cardiac and respiratory functions.
Though treatment for this kind of drug abuse is intensive, especially in the case of addiction, people can overcome their addiction in time. Because the addiction and effects of the drug abuse are both physical and mental, therapists can help a person holistically approach how to overcome their use of the drug, address the provoking reasons that have driven a person to use, and help them develop new healthy habits to prevent them from using in the future. As is commonly the case with drug treatment, the earlier people get help, the quicker and more long-lasting the success they find in recovery.
How do I know if I need treatment?
People seem to commonly try their luck when it comes to the questions of if and when they need treatment, or if their drug use is still under their control, and if it is something they just do for fun. The dangerous thing about this attitude is that the bottom line is: no one who ends up in drug treatment thought they were going to end up there. Instead, they were trying drugs, probably without any possibility in mind that they’d become addicted. This is why we suggest that if you’re using regularly, beginning to crave the drug, or experiencing any negative health effects, expert help is necessary. The physical risks are extremely severe and happen very quickly, so the time to get help is before- and not after- those symptoms arise.
What if I like how I feel on the drug?
There is a reason so many people become addicted to dangerous drugs and that’s because there are effects that people find pleasurable. However, if you’re using a drug to attain a certain level of enjoyment or happiness, there are probably other things going on that need to be addressed. Furthermore, if you’re using the drug regularly, you’re increasing the risk that you’re going to hurt yourself, possibly much more seriously than you intend. There are other ways to feel good, there are better ways to live, and a drug shouldn’t be something you depend upon to get by.