Drug Classification: Depressant Drug Schedule: I
Addiction Potential: HIGH
Modes of Administration: Oral (powder, pill, liquid)
Onset of Drug Effect(s): Initial effects occur in 10 to 20 minutes, depending on when and how much someone has consumed. Acute effects last 1-½ hours with lesser effects for another four hours. GHB is out of the body within 24 hours.
Drug Action(s): The active chemical, gammahydroxybutyrate, naturally occurs in the body. Synthesized, it is odorless, colorless, and only slightly salty, making it practically undetectable in a drink – the normal route of ingestion.
GHB inhibits dopamine release in the brain, creating a stockpile which is later released. This provides a sense of well-being after GHB is out of the system.
Acute effects on the mind and body include:
- Relaxation, disinhibition, tranquility
- Drowsiness, grogginess
- Decreased motor skills
- Increased pituitary growth hormone
- Increased protein synthesis
- Deeper, slower respiration
- Decreased heart rate
- Decreased body temperature
Because the range of safe dosage is extremely narrow, the potential for overdose is VERY high. Overdose symptoms include:
- Extreme grogginess with periods of unarousable sleep
- Dizziness, nausea
- Unconsciousness and vomiting, which may occur simultaneously
- Gag reflex suppressed
- Depressed breathing, convulsions, coma