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Club Drugs Addiction

Sections: What Are Club Drugs? | Types | Effects | Becoming Addicted | Signs & Symptoms | Withdrawal | Treatment | Hope

What Are Club Drugs?

The term “club drugs” refers to drugs that are well-known for being available in places like nightclubs. Such drugs are typically taken to enhance the party experience, as they can boost energy, create a feeling of intense euphoria, and even produce bizarre hallucinations.

While a few are classed as depressants, most club drugs tend to be stimulants. Stimulant drugs, as their name implies, stimulate the central nervous system to produce a variety of energetic and pleasurable effects.

Take a look at a few interesting facts about stimulants:

  • They are nicknamed “uppers” for their ability to lift the user’s mood and energy level.
  • Some may be prescribed stimulant medication, such as Adderall for treating ADHD. If the dose is too strong or the medication is taken by those who do not have the disorder, these drugs can be extremely addictive.
  • In addition to the “high,” stimulants also raise things like heart rate, sometimes to dangerous levels.


The Many Faces of Club Drugs

There are numerous types of drugs that can be found in clubs and at parties, but certain substances tend to be especially common. The following are just a few of the most popular and ubiquitous club drugs, as well as some of the nicknames for each:¹

  • Ecstasy
    • a.k.a. E, X, Molly (powdered)
  • Ketamine
    • a.k.a. K, special K, super K
  • LSD
    • a.k.a. Acid, tabs, boomers
  • Methamphetamine
    • a.k.a. Crank, ice, speed, crystal
  • Rohypnol
    • a.k.a. Roofies, rophies, forget me pill
  • GHB
    • a.k.a. Liquid ecstasy, liquid X, everclear


Girl Dancing At Club

Other substances that are sometimes taken at nightclubs include methylphenidate (Ritalin), ephedrine, and piperazines (BZP, TFMPP).

Drugs like rohypnol and GHB are central nervous system depressants, which, unfortunately, makes them popular for “date rape drug” purposes. These are often slipped secretly into a drink, rendering the victim unable to defend against sexual assault.


The Physiological Effects of Club Drugs on the Brain and Body

Depending on which type of drug a person takes in a club or party environment, the physical and mental side effects can vary drastically. Take a look at a few of club drugs’ physical effects on the brain and body:

  • Ecstasy
    • Relaxed euphoria
    • Distorted or intensified senses
    • Teeth grinding
  • Ketamine
    • Strong sense of detachment
    • Hallucinations
    • Confusion
  • LSD
    • Intense hallucinations
    • Pupil dilation
    • Shaking, sweating
  • Methamphetamine
    • Long-lasting euphoria
    • A dramatic increase in energy
    • Increased heart rate
  • Rohypnol
    • Severe drowsiness
    • Memory loss, amnesia
    • Inability to fight off sexual assault
  • GHB
    • Hypnotic euphoria
    • Uninhibited behavior
    • Drowsiness
    • Memory problems

Most of these drugs are intended to produce a pleasurable experience that artificially heightens a person’s enjoyment of things like music, dancing, and sex. However, taking these drugs presents a number of dangers as well. With repeated use, a person can easily develop a devastating club drug addiction that destroys their health and relationships. Even first-time users who are not addicted can still have a bad reaction to a drug or overdose accidentally. One time may be all it takes for a drug to derail your life.


How People Become Addicted to Club Drugs

Because there are so many different drugs in this category, there is not one mechanism by which people become addicted. Speaking generally, taking club drugs regularly and/or in large amounts alters the chemistry of the person’s brain, causing a physiological dependence that requires regular use to prevent sickness from withdrawal.

The power of peer pressure cannot be underestimated in a club environment. These kinds of drugs are often shared socially and characterized as harmless, short-term fun. Unfortunately, once a chemical club drug addiction takes hold, the effects are anything but temporary.


Long-Term Effects and Red Flags for Club Drug Addiction

When a person becomes addicted to one or more of these club drugs, various distressing, noticeable symptoms can develop. The following are a few key physical club drugs symptoms and behavioral changes that should serve as red flags for addiction:³

  • Heart palpitations
  • Paranoia, hallucinations
  • Declining liver function
  • Tooth damage
  • Increasingly impulsive behavior
  • A reduced sensation during sex, declining sex drive
  • Aggressive or irritable behavior
  • Memory and focus problems
  • Tremors, seizures
  • Skin scratches and sores
  • Avoiding or forgetting responsibilities
  • Difficulties at work
  • Financial instability

If you notice any of these symptoms in yourself or a loved one, get in contact with a professional treatment program right away.

The long-term repercussions of using these substances can easily be life-threatening. As a person uses club drugs in high amounts over a long period, these effects will continue to worsen and compound. As time goes on, the person will be at ever-greater risk of overdose and may even die from the heart, liver and/or nervous system damage they’ve suffered over the years.


Club Drugs Withdrawal Symptoms Are Distressing—and Dangerous

When a person becomes addicted to a club drug and continues to take more and more, the withdrawal symptoms often become increasingly severe. The experience is extremely unpleasant, and some of the physical effects can even be life-threatening.

Possible symptoms of withdrawal from various club drugs include the following:

  • Tremors, seizures
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Violent mood swings
  • Paranoia, delusions
  • Distressing hallucinations, nightmares
  • Extreme chills, dangerously high fevers
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Depression, suicidal thoughts


Recovering Addict

Club Drug Addiction Treatment: Why Is Professional Help Important?

While the idea of entering a professional drug rehab program can be stressful for some people, it is one of the best ways to safely and efficiently detox and recover from a destructive club drug addiction. Club drug detox and withdrawal aren’t just a few hours of discomfort, as they might appear in movies and on TV; real-world drug withdrawal is a serious medical undertaking that requires specialized care and constant monitoring to ensure the person’s health and safety.

In a professional treatment center environment, individuals have an opportunity to focus on their own physical and mental needs with help from compassionate, experienced medical providers and addiction recovery specialists. Most rehab facilities offer both inpatient and outpatient services, as well as a number of different therapies and counseling strategies to suit individuals’ varied treatment needs.

Residential addiction treatment programs typically include a detox period, which is ideal for those who are still chemically dependent on one or more substances. Outpatient treatment may be used as an ongoing treatment for those who have completed a residential program, or for those who do not require club drug detox. Residential programs tend to have strict rules regarding staying on-site and not contacting people outside the facility. This is to give clients privacy and space to work on themselves.

Drug treatment centers often also provide a variety of aftercare resources so that clients can continue to support their recovery even after they complete their club drug addiction rehab program. These resources may include things like job search assistance, sober living housing opportunities, etc.


Addicted to Club Drugs? There’s Hope at Yellowstone Recovery

Yellowstone Recovery in Southern California is dedicated to providing understanding, expert care and treatment for anyone dealing with an addiction to club drugs. We’ve been helping people find hope in recovery for years, and we succeed because we understand the nature of the disease. Every day, our professional staff strives to provide effective, successful residential and outpatient programs with evidence-based counseling techniques and a strong basis in the science of addiction.

Your story doesn’t end here. Call us today at (888) 418-4188 to learn how we can help you overcome your club drug addiction and write the next beautiful chapter.





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