You dreamt of a perfect athletic body or wanted to party high. You resorted to pills to achieve this. These are often advertized as muscle building drugs or party drugs or sold as dietary supplements. One such drug is Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate (GHB). Beware! These drugs are not safe.
GHB is an illegal drug available in pill, powder and liquid forms. It has no taste, odor or color. This makes it more suitable for abuse as its presence in a drink or food cannot be suspected or detected. It is a depressant of nervous activity, found in minute quantities as a chemical messenger in the brain. It is related in chemical structure and action to an endogenous natural depressant in the body called GABA. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) banned the manufacture and sale of GHB in 1990. A form of GHB, sodium oxybate, has been approved by the FDA for treatment of a sleep disorder called narcolepsy. GHB is available only on prescription and its use is regulated.
A precursor of GHB called gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) is a solvent found in floor cleaning products, nail polish, and superglue removers. GBL is converted to GHB in the body and has been similarly used and misused. FDA has issued warnings for the same. Another similar substance that can be converted in the body to GHB is 1,4-butanediol (BD). This is also hazardous and has been regulated by the FDA.
GHB is commonly misused as a muscle builder, mood enhancer, sex stimulant, a "party drug" and a "date-rape" drug. It leads to ecstasy, elation, and exhilaration. It is much in use amongst youngsters who use it for fun and frolic. It is misused as an acquaintance drug to sedate and incapacitate victims before rape or assault. This is called “acquaintance rape,” or “drug-assisted” assault.
Common street names of GHB
GHB has more than 30 common street names. Some of these are Blue nitro, Cherry fX bombs, Cherry meth, Easy lay Everclear, Firewater, Gamma G, Georgia homeboy, G.H. revitalize, Gib, Goops, Great hormones at bedtime, Grievous bodily harm, G-riffick, Growth hormone booster, Insom-X, Invigorate, Lemon fX drops, Liquid ecstasy, Liquid X, Liquid E, Longevity, Natural sleep-500, Nature's Quaalude, Organic quaalude, Orange fX rush, Oxy-sleep, Poor man's heroin, Remforce, Revivarant, Salty water, Scoop, Soap, Somatomax PM, Somsanit, Vita-G, Water, Wolfies, Zonked, Degreaser Plus, Lye, Fantasy, G, G-Caps, Gamma-G, Gamma-OH, etc.
Dangers of GHB use
In a usual dose of 1 to 5 grams (one teaspoonful or capful), GHB causes relaxation, slowing of heart rate and respiration, and loss of balance, coordination, and speech. This leads to reduction of inhibitions and the person becomes playful, sociable, and cooperative. It may put the person to deep sleep that resembles a comatose state. The person becomes jerky and agitated. GHB can cause vomiting or a feeling of one, dizziness, seizures, low blood pressure and heart rate, forgetfulness, clouded thinking, and even coma. The surreptitious production of GHB has acids in the mixtures that can damage the lining of the food pipe and stomach.
Repeated use of GHB can lead to dependence. The person who takes GHB experiences a high and pleasure, takes more to intensify the nice feeling, gets uneasy and restless when not taking GHB, and sets up a vicious process of consuming more and more of it.
GHB- the date rape drug
GHB is known as “date rape” drug. It is used to make the person physically weak and vulnerable, to sexually assault the victims and facilitate rape. Being colorless, odorless, and tasteless it can be added to drinks and beverages. The victim then sleeps and is no longer a rebel for sex. Besides this it is abused as a sex stimulant and gives a high for sex.
Measures to take after consuming GHB unknowingly
There is always likelihood that you unknowingly ingest GHB. If you are confused, sleepy, and cannot recollect how you took GHB, call your friends, family, and the police for help. If you think you have been sexually assaulted, do not shower, bathe or change clothes unless you have undergone a medical examination and required samples have been collected. You may call one of the rape crisis centers or help groups for support. You may try to retain a sample of the beverage. If you are overdosed, you may not be conscious and may need medical help and hospitalization and management.
Be careful, GHB can be in your drink!
You can check the chance of being dosed by caution. Do not accept drinks from unknown people, open your own bottles, carry your drinks, and do not leave them unattended, never share drinks, do not drink from punch bowls. Always go to party with a trusted friend. Be careful when having alcohol as effects of GHB can be exaggerated when added to alcohol.