Yep, if you’re doing party drugs, at least be informed about the effects (or the best guess on effects, anyway).
Stimulants: speed up messages between brain and body plus give energy – often very addictive, may be fatal.
- Ice (crystal meth, shabu, glass): sooo many scary long-term effects — psychosis, uncontrolled violence, heart and kidney failure and stroke are some of the worst. Web-search “ice mug shots”.
- Speed (goey, whiz, fast): like ice but less potent. It keeps you awake, but have you ever seen an angry speed freak picking off chunks of their own skin? Better to grab a coffee.
- Cocaine (coke, snow, Charlie, blow, nose candy), also freebase and crack: you’re alert and feeling fine, unless you’re paranoid, have hyperthermia, brain haemorrhage, stroke, seizures, sexual probs and/or heart and kidney failure.
- Ecstasy (MDMA, disco biscuits, XTC, love drug): ok, so you love everyone, but you probably won’t love possible brain damage or being slower, fatter and depressed.
- Emerging Psychoactive Substances (EPs), like synthetic cannabinoids, “bath salts”, MDPV, Mephedrone (meow meow, meph, drone, MCAT), BPZ (benzylpiperazine, A2, frenzy, nemesis): no idea long-term, plus potency, purity, composition and effects vary enormously — you could be alert and happy or quite possibly dead, especially if you mix it with other drugs and/or alcohol.
Depressants: slow down central nervous system and messages going between brain and body – often very addictive, an overdose can kill you (except cannabis, but it can make you nuts).
- GHB (gammahydroxybuyrate, liquid Ecstasy, Liquid X, fantasy): high risk of overdose, incontinence, diarrhoea (eew), blackouts, seizures, stopping breathing.
- Heroin (smack, H, junk, hammer): makes you happy, relaxed, sleepy and damaged — to heart, lungs, liver and brain among other things.
- Benzos (benzodiazepines, downers, valium, temazepam, tranks): relaxed, happy, plus depressed, paranoid, fatter, more unco’ and possibly in a coma.
- Alcohol (see info here)
- Cannabis (see info here)
Hallucinogens: heighten sensory perception LSD (acid, trips): a bad trip leading to risky behaviour or (rarely) suicide; nasty flashbacks up to years later.
- Psilocybin (magic mushrooms, mushies, gold-tops): same as for LSD.
- Emerging Psychoactive Substances (EPs): not much is known about short or long-term effects of new synthetic hallucinogens such as N-BOM, since potency, purity and composition vary enormously. It’s a huge gamble — see the stimulants box for more on this.
- Ketamine (K, horse tranquiliser, special K): same as for PCP (below).
- PCP (angel dust): not-so-angelic possibilities are sedation, dissociation, coma, convulsions and death.
Inhalants: increase sensation/well-being – linked to brain damage, paralysis, heart or breathing problems or SSD (sudden sniffing death).
- Nitrous oxide (laughing gas, bulbs): makes you light-headed, dizzy, giggly and blocks pain but dangerous if replaces oxygen in the lungs.
- Amyl nitrite (poppers): used to increase/ prolong orgasm; can cause nose and mouth sores, chest pains, heart trouble and possible death, especially if combined with Viagra, Levitra or Cialis.
- Butyl nitrite (bolt, rush): similar to amyl nitrite.
- Volatile solvents (paint, glue, petrol): cheap, easy to find and linked to collapse, sudden death and neurological (including brain) damage.