Gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) is a controlled substance. Although it has medical uses, GHB side effects can lead to severe substance abuse problems. For some, it’s also a drug to get high. Others misuse it as a date rape drug.
Who Abuses GHB?
Interestingly, some athletes misuse the drug to build muscle mass and decrease fat. Mind you, it is not a steroid. This form of abuse can lead people to believe that GHB side effects aren’t severe. Some people go so far as to claim that it’s safe.
It is also abused in larger quantities with alcohol because it then acts as a nervous system depressant. As a club drug, it reduces inhibitions, loosens people up, and may make them feel more empathetic. Some people say it increases their sex drives. Others claim that it energizes them.
GHB Side Effects Few People Talk About
But there are dangers to this drug. Aside from the misuse as a date rape drug, it can harm willing users, too. Some people experience breathing difficulties. The heart rate and blood pressure go down.
You might experience seizures or slip into a coma. Others may deal with hallucinations. Similarly, users also report that they felt overly anxious or depressed. For them, the experience was negative and frightening.
An overdose can lead to a blackout. Similar to alcohol blackouts, you can’t recall what happened. You may wake up somewhere and have no idea how you got there. You suffer from confusion and slurred speech.
People also react aggressively when under the influence of the substance. Therapists at our MDMA addiction rehab center in WA consider a combative attitude a sign of overdose. On top of this, your gag reflex may stall which creates a high risk of suffocating due to vomit.
Addiction’s always possible. Furthermore, GHB has withdrawal symptoms. They’re a lot like those you might experience with alcohol. Besides that, you may have a difficult time differentiating reality from imagination.
Dependency can turn into a traumatic experience.
Get Professional Help to Deal with Dependency
GHB isn’t an easy drug to quit. Cold turkey approaches typically don’t work well. Instead, work with specialists at a rehab facility who’ll see you through the process. Possible treatments include:
- Medication-assisted therapy that eases discomfort, cravings, and similar withdrawal symptoms
- Meditation that helps you work through stressors and introduces you to mindfulness training
- Cognitive behavioral therapy, which empowers you to find new ways of reacting to negative stimuli
- Family therapy as a tool for involving loved ones in your recovery efforts
- Group therapy, which encourages you to learn from peers who are also in recovery
Aftercare Protects Early Sobriety
Once you graduate from rehab, there’s still more to do. Addiction is a chronic disease, which means that there’s no complete cure. In contrast, there’s always the risk of relapse. This risk is particularly substantial during the early days of recovery.
That’s why good-quality rehab centers offer a drug rehab aftercare component. For many, it means stepping down to an outpatient treatment schedule. You still meet with a therapist and group when needed. Most importantly, there’s accountability and a safety net.
Find out more about overcoming GHB side effects, addiction, and relapse risks by talking to the therapists at Bayview Recovery. Stop putting yourself at risk. Recovery is within your reach. A quick call to 855.478.3650 gets the ball rolling.