Many people across the United Kingdom partake in “club drugs,” whether that be to try and enhance the atmosphere on a night out or to increase the intensity of a party at a friend’s house. However, while many people, particularly young people, partake in consuming party drugs at the weekend, this is often done without much pride knowledge about the true dangers behind party drugs. Furthermore, many people can enter into the world of club drugs without realising how highly addictive they are.

Without understanding the reality behind club drugs, people do not know what they are doing to their bodies every single week. In turn, this can lead to a long life of adverse effects such as medical issues — both mental and physical. Below we will be looking into what club drugs (or party drugs) are as well as the danger they pose and how to avoid them.


Which Drugs Are Considered Club Drugs?

Club drugs are typically used by teenagers and young adults when they are at parties, music concerts, raves, or bars. These drugs will often be characterised by the fact that they cause changes to an individual’s state of awareness while also allowing them to feel less socially anxious. Most club drugs are illegal and can cause seriously detrimental side effects.

Psychoactive drugs are substances that will alter the user’s mind and behaviour, these include the subcategories of stimulant drugs, depressants, and hallucinogens. Opioids are not considered to be termed club drugs, rather club drugs fall into the previous three categories that were stated.


Stimulant club drugs will cause the user’s brain and central nervous systems to increase awareness of their surroundings, elevate the user’s mood, increase the speed and frequency of speech, escalate an individual’s motor activity, while also decreasing the user’s social inhibitions and sense of fear. This is a powerful combination of side effects that can lead to some truly disastrous situations and health complications.



Depressant club drugs will cause a slowing down of the user’s central nervous system. They can reduce the amount of arousal that an individual may be able to experience while also slowing down their response/reaction time.



Hallucinogenic club drugs can cause the user to perceive, hear, or feel things that are not really there. These substances can hamstring an individual’s judgement while also being known to damage a person’s memory impairment.

We will now be looking in more depth at each of these categories.


What You Need To Know About Stimulant Club Drugs

Methamphetamines are largely known as club drugs. There are many other colloquial terms for these forms of drugs, with them including the likes of speed, meth, crystal, crank, tweak, uppers, glass, and poor man’s cocaine. Methamphetamines are incredibly addictive substances, often being known to cause such side effects as heightened physical exertion, an overpowering feeling of alertness, a lack of appetite, increased breathing rate, increased heart rate, irregular heartbeats, heightened blood pressure, and even overheating (hyperthermia).

People who have used meth for a long period of time may find themselves at risk of a heart attack, although this is not a surprise considering the strain that this drug puts upon an individual’s heart. Additionally, people with longstanding meth use behind them can fall prey to mood swings (often leading to them becoming incredibly violent), paranoia, hallucinations (both visual and auditory hallucinations), severe anorexia (from the perpetually weakened appetite), memory loss, as well as problems with their teeth.

People who consume enough meth to overdose can be at an extremely high risk of dying due to the combination of a massively high body temperature as well as convulsions and cardiovascular collapse.


What You Should Know About Depressant Club Drugs

Gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), also known as liquid ecstasy, is a central nervous system depressant that is typically prescribed as a form of treatment for narcolepsy. However, when it is abused, this drug can cause individuals to experience loss of self-control, increased sex drive, increased suggestibility, amnesia, as well as bodily sedation.

Due to these side effects, GHB is often used as a date rape drug as it leaves those who have consumed it every susceptible to sexual assaults and other criminal acts. High doses of GHB can also reportedly lead to states of unconsciousness, seizures, dangerously slowed heart rate and breathing rate, lowered body temperature, vomiting, nausea, and even death.

Another depressant club drug that is used as a form of date rape drug is Rohypnol (roofies). Rohypnol is a benzodiazepine that produces a hypnotic and sedative effect. Other side-effects of this drug can also include the likes of anxiousness, states of confusion, relaxation of the muscular systems, loss of bodily control, drowsiness, blackouts, memory damage, as well as the possibility of experiencing a seizure.


What To Know About Hallucinogenic Club Drugs

Ketamine has a legitimate use as an anaesthetic. However, it is commonly misused by people leading them to feel a state of being detached from reality. The side effects of ketamine can include amnesia, high blood pressure, poor motor functionality, as well as psychotic breaks which may last for an extended period.

MDMA (3, 4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine), also known as ecstasy, is a synthetic psychoactive narcotic which has both the characteristic of a stimulant and a hallucinogenic. When used for long periods of time, this substance can damage the brain’s ability to regulate serotonin. Furthermore, it can also lead to anxiousness, depression, as well as liver, kidney, and heart failure.

LSD (Acid) is a substance that will cause the user to experience a distorted perception of the reality around them. This can include distortion of colours, the user’s own body image, and surrounding sounds. Some of the more unsettling side-effects include the likes of insomnia, tremors, heightened blood pressure, psychosis and death.


Tips For Avoiding Club Drugs

If you feel as though you are being pressured to try and use club drugs, then you should try and leave the situation that you have found yourself, then reach out to a helpline or a friend/loved one who can support you.

However, if you feel as though you know someone who has already fallen prey to drug addiction and requires help with their addiction, then reach out to Ocean Recovery today. Our helpline staff can offer support for families (and support for friends) of those suffering from drug addiction. We can also help to get them a space at a drug rehab which will see them receive assistance with drug detox and appropriate addiction treatment.

    Ocean Recovery - Author - Last updated: March 24, 2023