Commonly known as the date rape drug.
Rohypnol is an expensive drug intended for use in treating sleep disorders, such as insomnia.
What is it?
The effects are similar to valium, but 10 times stronger.
Rohypnol is sold on prescription in bubble packs of 1 or 2mg doses (usually in the form of white tablets with the word ROCHE written across).
This drug has been slipped into drinks to cause a sedative effect, thus earning a reputation as "the date rape drug".
- Rohypnol takes effect within 20 to 30 minutes of administration and lasts up to eight hours. It acts as a sedative by inducing amnesia, relaxing the muscles, and slowing down psychomotor responses.
- Tolerance is likely with repeated use, which means you need more to get the same effect.
- If combined with heroin, it can enhance the high. If combined with cocaine, rohypnol can mellow out the kick. If combined with alcohol, rohypnol can increase the feeling of drunkenness and lower inhibitions.
Dangers of rohypnol:
- Continued abuse of rohypnol can lead to physical dependency. Kicking a habit at this stage can be very difficult.
- Withdrawal symptoms may include headaches, muscle pain, confusion, hallucinations and even convulsions. Seizures may occur up to a week after users have quit.
- Experts advise controlling withdrawal under medical supervision if you're abusing rohypnol or other benzodiazepines. Consult your doctor before trying to kick the habit.
- Always be aware of the danger that someone may try to spike your drink.
- Never ever leave a drink unattended.
- If a stranger offers you a drink do not accept it.
- If a group of you go out together help to make yourself safe by selecting a person who will not be drinking to keep an eye on the group's drinks.
- Wherever possible, try to drink out of a bottle or can. It is more difficult to spike a bottle or can than it is to drop a drug into a drink in an open glass.
- Just because you are not drinking alcohol does not make you safe. There have been cases of tea, coffee, milk and coke being spiked.
How to tell if you've been spiked:
- Everyone is aware of his/her own personal tolerance to alcohol. If you feel odd, nauseated, slightly drunk or wasted after only a couple of drinks, and you know that you cannot be drunk, there is more than a chance that your drink has been spiked. If so, go immediately to a place of safety.
- If you are with a friend tell them of your worries, get them to get you out of the place as soon as possible and to get you home either in their car or by taxi.
- However make sure you trust the person or friend you are asking. Many victims have been raped by the people they know, in some cases friends or acquaintances, and in many cases the date they went on that night.
- If you are alone or with a stranger, go to the manager and tell them. It is important to get to a place of safety as soon as possible, and then you can ring for a taxi or a friend or parents to get you home safely.
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