Dr. Henry Paul, MD

Psychiatrist, Author and Educator


June 10th, 2015

What substances are being used on the Rave dance scene? Rave clubs that seem to be attracting adolescents and young adults in their mid-to-late 20’s are known to be connected to a variety of substances and drugs. Here is a list of some of the most accessible and dangerous drugs often available at a rave.

4692114_sEcstasy is the most popular and well-known club drug. It is also referred to as “Molly”, E, X, “Adam” and “clarity”. It is a synthetic drug similar to amphetamines and mescaline (a hallucinogen). It both stimulates and causes psychedelic or hallucinogenic effects. It is most popular in a tablet or capsule form, and its effects typically last for three to six hours. It increases heart rate and blood pressure, and because it enables its user to dance all night, it often causes dehydration. Ecstasy can lead to heart and kidney disease, brain damage, and in rare cases can cause a marked muscle breakdown, high body temperature, heart attacks, strokes and seizures.

GHB (gamma hydroxybutyrate) is also known as “G”, liquid ecstasy, and “Georgia Homeboy”. It is a very common drug at Raves that is often made with mail-order ingredients. It is ingested as a liquid, powder, tablet or capsule. GHB is both a sedative and a euphoriant. This is a drug that effects the central nervous system causing its user to feel relaxed and sedated. At high levels, it can slow breathing and heart rate to dangerously low levels. Overdose with this drug can occur quickly and be fatal. GHB is often used with alcohol, and this can be a deadly combination.

Rohypnol, in the same family as Valium and Xanax, is known as the “forget me pill”.  It is usually taken orally and is easily slipped into drinks. Rohypnol is a popular date rape drug because it causes memory loss from the moment it is taken. It lowers blood pressure, causes dizziness and confusion, as well as urine retention.

Methamphetamine is known as speed, meth crystal, glass, “Tina” and “Chalk”. It is very common at Rave parties. It acts as a stimulant and causes memory loss, uncontrollable aggression and violence, psychosis and nerve damage. It is an extremely disinhibiting drug and its users frequently engage in unsafe sex that often exposes them to sexually transmitted diseases, such as HIV and Hepatitis C.

Ketamine, also known as “special k”, “vitamin K” and “new ecstasy” is also known as angel dust. It is similar to the dangerous drug PCP. It is sometimes snorted or smoked with marijuana or cigarettes. Some people inject it, too. It causes serious neurological, blood pressure and breathing problems.

LSD, familiar for decades, is also known as acid. It wreaks havoc with your perceptions, thoughts, and feelings. It is taken as a pill, liquid or on a saturated blotted paper. LSD can cause severe psychotic reactions that can last long afterwards.

I’ll discuss what to do if you suspect that your child is taking these drugs in my next blog.

My Teen Wants to Go to a Rave.  What’s a Rave?

This blog is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended as medical or psychiatric advice for individual conditions or treatment and does not substitute for a medical or psychiatric examination. A psychiatrist must make a determination about any treatment or prescription. Dr. Paul does not assume any responsibility or risk for the use of any information contained within this blog.

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