Recently, a new type of recreational drug usage has become popular among young adults. The phrase, “club drugs,” can be used to describe a variety of drugs that young adults and teenagers use at nightclubs, parties, and concerts. The usage of club drugs first began in the 1980s at raves in England, but they continue to be an issue today. Recently, the National Institute of Drug Abuse reported that there has been a drastic increase of children as young as 12 using club drugs. Though club drugs are often perceived as a harmless and non-addictive way to enhance a night of partying, they can have deadly side-effects.
Common Club Drugs
Some of the most popular drugs found at raves and other teen gatherings include:
- Ecstasy — Ecstasy is one of the most commonly used club drugs, and it is a hallucinogen and stimulant that is synthetically produced. It makes users feel happy, and alert. Ecstasy is also known as MDMA, Molly, X, and E.
- Ketamine — Ketamine is technically an animal tranquilizer, but it is often abused as a drug. It gives users a strong high that can last up to 2 hours. It is often consumed in a powdered form that is called Special K.
- LSD — LSD is a hallucinogen that exaggerates sensory perceptions, and it causes highly unpredictable effects. It is also referred to as acid, blotter, or dots.
- Stimulants — A variety of other stimulants are often used as club drugs, including prescription medications, such as Ritalin, and dangerous drugs, such as methamphetamines. Stimulants are common because they provide a sense of energy, euphoria, and hyperactivity.
Teens and young adults either ignore or unaware of the dangerous effects these substances can have on their physical and mental health and often overdose, leading to coma or death.
The Dangers Are Often Ignored or Unknown
Though club drugs can seem like they result in harmless fun, they can be highly dangerous, especially when combined with other drugs. Many hallucinogens such as ecstasy and LSD can cause dehydration and heat exhaustion, since users often dance for hours without stopping. Most stimulants increase heart rate and blood pressure, which has been linked to deadly heart attacks and heart failures. Regularly using Ketamine can cause damage to the kidneys and other organs. Strong doses and combinations of club drugs often results in users developing the dangerous serotonin syndrome, which can have permanent effects. Since most drugs taken in club scenes are indeterminate pills and powders, it is almost impossible for users to be certain of what they are taking, which can result in unknowingly ingesting hazardous chemicals and drugs.
Treatment for Club Drug Abuse
Trying the psychedelic drugs and strong stimulants that are often available in clubs can often lead to regular abuse and dependence. Nearly 50% of people who attend raves abuse club drugs on a regular basis. In order to treat addiction symptoms, it is necessary for individuals to undergo medically-monitored detox, and a rehabilitation treatment center can be an essential part of achieving permanent recovery. With the right help, it is possible to overcome the cycle of dependence on club drugs.