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GHB / GBL

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Also known as

GBH, Gamma Hydroxybutyrate, Gamma Butyrolactone, Liquid Ecstasy, Geebs, G.

About

  • GHB (gammahydroxybutrate) and GBL (gammabutyrolactone), are closely related drugs which produce similar sedative and anaesthetic effects.
  • The desired effects of GHB/GBL include euphoria, relaxation, increased sociability and reduced inhibitions.
  • Effects vary greatly, a euphoric dose for one person may be a sedative dose for another.

Appearance

GHB/GBL typically comes as a clear liquid sold in small plastic bottles. It is also available in capsule form.

Method of use

Swallowed, usually in liquid form or capsules.

Risks

  • Taking too much GHB/GBL can risk accidental overdose and can even kill. The risk is even higher when used with alcohol or other depressant or sedative substances.
  • Sustained use can lead to certain symptoms emerging including loss of normal sleep patterns, blacked out periods and inability to function normally with everyday tasks.
  • Regular and frequent use of GHB can lead to physical dependency, with severe withdrawal symptoms including, tremors, fits and hallucinations.
  • GHB/GBL can be used in sexual assaults as a rape drug.

Keeping safe

  • If you choose to use GHB/GBL, then use it in a safe environment and in the company of someone you trust. Ideally, this person will not have used the substance themselves and will be in a position to get help if things go wrong.
  • Take small amounts first to test strength and effects; start low and go slow.
  • The use of GHB/GBL with other drugs including alcohol should be avoided. Even just a few units of alcohol can have a powerful and disastrous effect.
  • Anyone using GHB for a sustained period of time should seek advice from their local drug agency before discontinuing. Stopping abruptly can be dangerous and is not advised.
  • If you have used and are going to sleep, then sleep on your side in case you are sick. Place sleeping or unconscious friends in the recovery position.

Legal status

  • GHB and GBL are both Class C drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, although GBL continues to be available for legitimate use in industry.
  • Possession of GHB/GBL could result in a prison sentence of up to two years and/or an unlimited fine.
  • Supplying GHB/GBL to someone else could result in a prison sentence of up to 14 years and/or an unlimited fine.