Q&A: I’ve been invited to some guys’ house and they do “party drugs”. I am curious and a little bit nervous.
There are lots of things that go for “party drugs” these days, and that’s without even talking about “pharming,” where people mix up some pills and just pick them out of a bowl or glass, not really knowing what it is that they picked. Drugs such as Ecstasy, various hallucinogenics, and all kinds of prescription drugs that are otherwise used for pain relief or ADHD, often produce extremely intense mood, sensory and thought altering experiences. People report increased energy, heightened senses, sensuality, and disinhibition. These drugs tend to evoke sexual feelings and as with alcohol, tend to reduce one’s better judgment about safety if one is hooking up with someone.
DXM (dextromethorphan hydrobromide) is currently highly popular among teens who use something aside from alcohol to get a temporary high. DXM is the most widely available active ingredient in most over-the-counter cough suppressants. These cough suppressing products contain other ingredients that are highly toxic and can be fatal when taken in the large doses needed to get the desired high. They are sometimes the ‘punch’ in the punch that is served.
Risks of Using Party Drugs:
- Misjudging obvious dangers
- Decreased inhibitions and boundaries
- Increased likelihood of accidents and injuries
- Engagement in high risk behaviors, unchecked sexual behavior or temporary immobilization
- Decreased ability to respond effectively to danger
- Increase in panic or depressiveness
- Lapses in memory
- Rebound exhaustion
- Overdose can be a medical emergency or fatal.
People with mood, thought or medical issues are at risk for exacerbation of these issues or at risk for them to emerge for the first time. Some people complain of exhaustion, moodiness, sadness and irritability after they come down from the initial high.
How to cut back?
People who get into the habit of using party drugs seem to use them in association with certain settings. Most often people are tempted to switch what they use to keep up with the raves and all night dancing. Others are able just to enjoy the partying without needing any chemical enhancement.
If you find it hard not to use drugs in these settings, you might do well creating alternative ways to physically challenge yourself and express your enthusiasm for life and people. If that doesn’t work or you find yourself using some of these drugs in other settings as well, consult with a counselor familiar with addictive behaviors, who can advise and support you in letting go of these habits and developing healthier ones.