Gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB to most people) is a drug that is illegal to have, distribute, sell, or make, but it is still one of the most popular recreational drugs around for teenagers and young adults. Many chat forums have opened in which people ask for advice on using it, with some mixed answers as a result.
Case Studies Related to GHB—Scientific Studies
For the sake of argument, this article will incorporate a more scientific approach to GHB and how it can be used. The bad reputation may be warranted in the opinions of some, but without downplaying the victimization of anyone we do want to present the different ways that top scientists and researchers are studying the use of GHB for a variety of medicinal purposes. Some recent case studies include:
One of the most interesting case studies found during research for this article involved a young man who had only been taking GHB for a short time. During his initial ingesting period, he went from just a couple of capfuls at a time to nearly twenty in one dose, causing intense hallucinations and inducing feelings of paranoia and fear. It took two weeks for the drug’s effects to wear off completely, but the young man was still experiencing some mental issues related to the hallucinations.
Another interesting study was published about a young man who came into an emergency room after a decade-long self-assessed addiction to GHB. One of the only physical symptoms noted when he was admitted was tachycardia (elevated heart rate), although there were several psychological factors present as well. He was treated for both the physical and mental condition and released after six days when he showed no more signs of agitation, hostility, hallucinations, or increased heart rate. Although he was not given medication to help deal with the withdrawal from GHB, it was noted that he was sent to a rehab center for assistance.
Reports From Users—Real People
Obviously, since using GHB is against the law without a valid prescription, it is difficult to get detailed and reliable information from those who use the drug only recreationally. However, there are those websites that offer some in-depth knowledge of usage from those who have been there, with some mixed reviews regarding the end results. Most real users recommend starting very small in order to see how you react to GHB, but the dosage definitely has an affect on the effects of the drug.
A bodybuilder posting on a public forum noted that he has used GHB in order to boost his efforts, with some measure of success. His intent seems to be getting some sleep in order to see bigger, healthier muscles, and he says that he is achieving that goal. On the other hand, another user in the same forum notes that using GHB is nearly worthless for developing muscle mass unless you are willing to take it in large quantities for extended periods of time. That poster concludes by noting that doing this may result in big muscles, but it can also lead to death.
A new user posted taking GHB for the first time, ingesting only half of what he bought in order to gauge how it affected him. He reported relaxation and feel-good thoughts, and asked other users about whether to go ahead with the rest of the dose. More experienced users recommended waiting a while first, and the newbie does note that he has a friend with him in case he experiences adverse affects. None are noted in later posts.
Younger Users—Rave Clubs and More
Some public forums describe usage by a younger generation, such as high school age and thereabouts, sometimes in correlation with other club drugs such as MDMA or ecstasy. GHB is cheap to make, but not widely available like some other recreational drugs so it has not taken over the club scene yet. However, it is available in some major cities readily, such as Dallas.
A report from a hopeful user gets information from a variety of individuals who have tried the drug, with some recommending trying it alone, another saying to only use in combination with MDMA and others saying do not try it or it is not worth trying. One of the biggest things that interested the hopeful was the fact that GHB can heighten sexual arousal and intensify the experience. There is no information on the results of the hopeful’s opinions after trying the drug, although he or she does mention that the plan is to combine it with MDMA.
In fact, users of GHB post on other public forums that GHB and sex are excellent partners if you know the right dosage. Too much and you fall asleep, or your partner does, but not enough and you feel absolutely no effects. Most of these users claim that alcohol heightens the effect, but they also point out numerous times that using alcohol and GHB together is extremely dangerous at best.
Although GHB is more popular among the younger generation by a long shot, the public forum postings suggest that users can be found among several different generations, including some older users and a few younger than high school age. Many seem to mix the drug with alcohol, despite warning after warning against doing this very thing. It may work for some people, but it can be deadly, so know your dose or start small is the overall advice from those who have tried the drug more than once.
GHB was once sold on store shelves as a sleep aid ingredient and as a way to help bodybuilders, but today it is against the law without a prescription. It is still popular on the club scene though, and more teenagers try it each year at least once than many other recreational drugs.