GHB and Rohypnol Addiction and Abuse
GHB and Rohypnol addiction and abuse is common in the drug and rave scene in the US. GHB is a naturally occurring chemical in the human body that depresses the central nervous system. It was initially promoted as a way to improve performance, build muscle and reduce fat, and was used by athletes and body builders. However, it has since become popular in the party and club scene due to the euphoria and sedation that it lends. Also a club drug, Rohypnol, also known as Flunitrazepam, is a benzodiazepine used as a sedative, muscle relaxant and to treat anxiety.
GHB is a clear, odorless liquid with a hint of saltiness to its taste. It is ingested by mixing it with water or alcoholic beverages. The lack of control relating to the strength and formation of the drug means that overdose risks are high, especially when combined with alcohol. Rohypnol, on the other hand, is usually found in tablet form, and although earlier versions were tasteless and odourless, a new formulation dyes liquids blue when they have been mixed with the drug.
While Rohypnol can be illicitly formulated, it can also be imported from other countries where it is legal, and thus is strength and formulation do not very to the same degree as GHB’s, although overdose risk when combined with alcohol remains high.
Both GHB and Rohypnol act strongly on the system when combined with alcohol or other depressants, and have been implicated in many sexual assault and date rape cases. These concerns are why Rohypnol was reformulated to indicate when it has been mixed into a drink.
GHB and Rohypnol are both illegal substances in the US, with no acceptable medical use, and strict penalties are associated with their formulation and distribution. Nevertheless, GHB and Rohypnol addiction and abuse is rife given their extensive use in the club scene.
Common street names for GHB and Rohypnol
GHB is commonly known as:
- G or liquid ecstasy
- Gamma Oh
- Georgia Home Boy
- Great Hormones at Bedtime
- Grievous Bodily Harm
- Liquid E
- Liquid X
- Salty Water
- Vita G
- Growth Hormone Booster
Rohypnol is commonly known as:
- The forget-me-pill
- Mexican Valium
- date rape drug
- forget pill
- la rocha
- lunch money
- mind eraser
- roach 2
- Rochas Dos
As of 2000, GHB is classified as a Schedule I controlled substance with no accepted medical uses; the drug can only be obtained through illegal channels. Rohypnol is a Schedule IV substance with no approved medical use in the US; however, it is available by prescription in a number of other countries, making it a smuggling and trafficking risk.
Drug History and Trends in Usage
GHB was introduced into medicine in 1960, and was later discovered to be a naturally occurring chemical in the body. Initially used as an anaesthetic, this use ceased after doctors realized that it had poor pain-killing effects. It was later used to treat narcolepsy, and then as a fat burning supplement. After reports of illness and side effects, the government began to stamp down on GHB distribution; not long after GHB became popular as a party drug due to its euphoric effects and ability to enhance sexual desires. Studies suggest that GHB and Rohypnol addiction and abuse has been on the increase since the 1990s.
Rohypnol, on the other hand, was formulated from the Benzodiazepines first developed by Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche. These drugs were subsequently reformulated, with Flunitrazepam, the generic name for Rohypnol being one of the resulting drugs. Rohypnol is used as a sedative and anti-anxiety medication in much of Europe and the West, but is outlawed in the US. Like GHB, it is a popular club drug, and Rohypnol addiction may be on the rise.
Side effects of GHB and Rohypnol
The side effects of GHB usually take 10-20 minutes to arise and may vary in intensity depending on whether the drug has been mixed with other substances. They include euphoria, decreased inhibitions, muscle relaxation, somnolence, loss of coordination, lowered heart and respiration rates and impaired memory. Drowsiness and sleepiness can be felt for up to twelve hours after use.
When mixed with alcohol GHB can result in blackouts and memory loss; when taken to overdose, GHB users may experience nausea and vomiting, hallucinations, seizures, amnesia, loss of consciousness and potentially death.
The side effects of Rohypnol overlap with those of GHB in some instances, including sedation, muscle relaxation, memory loss and impaired coordination. Combining it with alcohol can increase its effects, potentially leading to loss of consciousness, coma or death.
Withdrawal symptoms of GHB and Rohypnol
GHB addiction can come on promptly, and users who withdraw from GHB may experience anxiety, shakes, insomnia, confusion, delirium and even hallucinations.
Rohypnol addiction, on the other hand, can result in serious and potentially life-threatening withdrawal effects. Rohypnol withdrawal symptoms include pain, anxiety, restlessness and numbness or tingling, along with dangerous seizures and convulsions.
Treatment for GHB and Rohypnol addiction
GHB and Rohypnol addiction and abuse is on the rise due to their popularity in the club and rave scenes. As such, young people are at risk of GHB addiction as well as Rohypnol addiction, and seeking treatment is essential.
However, withdrawing from the drugs without medical support may be dangerous, especially given the severity of Rohypnol withdrawal symptoms. For this reason, structured rehab programs are recommended as they allow for medical supervision of the patient, as well as ongoing support as the patient aims to manage their addiction and prevent relapse.
GHB and Rohypnol addiction can ruin young people’s lives. If you or someone you love is struggling with GHB or Rohypnol addiction, get help now. Ask us about our detox programs today. White Sands Tampa 1-877-640-7820.