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How To Recognise If You Or Someone Else Has Been Spiked/Drugged & What To Do

How To Recognise If You Or Someone Else Has Been Spiked/Drugged & What To Do

Friday 29th October 2021
Direct Training (GB) Ltd.

In the UK, the last few weeks have seen an increase in the number of people who have been reporting that they have had their drink spiked or that they have been spiked by injection whilst they are out in nightclubs and bars.

If you or your friends start to have a reaction to alcohol which is different to normal whilst you are on a night out then this may be an indicator that you have been spiked. In today's blog we are going to be sharing with you everything that you need to know about spiking such as the signs, symptoms and what to do if you think that you or someone else has been spiked/drugged.

What drugs are usually used for spiking?
GHB, Ketamine are the most common drugs which are used for spiking as well as benzodiazepines such as Valium and Rohypnol. These drugs are primarily used because of the simple fact that it is hard for someone to detect that they are in a drink due to the drugs usually being tasteless, having no colour and no smell.

What are the signs and symptoms of a person who has been spiked?
Depending on the drug that someone has been spiked with, the signs and symptoms could vary. Common symptoms to look out for are as follows:
- Visual problems
- Nausea
- Unconsciousness
- Acting differently
- A loss of balance
- Vomiting
- Confusion

What to do if someone has been spiked
If you suspect that someone has been spiked you must do the following things:
- Tell a bouncer, bar manager or staff member immediately.
- Stay with them and keep talking to them to keep them alert.
- Do not let them go home on their own or with someone you don't know or trust.
- Don't let them drink more alcohol as this could lead to more serious problems.
- Call an ambulance, especially if their condition deteriorates.

What to do if you have been spiked
If you suspect that you have been spiked you must do the following things:
- Stop drinking immediately.
- Immediately tell someone that you trust. This must be done quickly as substances can take effect quickly and can therefore make it harder to communicate.
- If you are alone, ask security staff or venue staff for help. Be extremely cautious with asking strangers for help and try and avoid it if possible.
- If you need urgent help. Call 999. If you have someone with you who you trust and know who Is taking care of you. Ask them to take you to A&E if they are able to and tell them that you think you've been drugged.
- If you have been spiked or someone you know has been spiked or drugged then you must inform the police as spiking is illegal. The police may ask you for a sample of your blood or urine.

This is to determine which drugs have been used. It is important to inform the police as soon as you can and provide them with a sample as most drugs will leave your body between 12 and 72 hours after they entered.

How to prevent your drink from being spiked
There are a few simple steps that you and your friends can take to try and prevent your drinks from being spiked. They are as follows:
- Keep your drink in your hand at all times
- Do not share, swap or drink any leftover drinks
- Some venues provide drink stoppers for the top of your bottle to prevent someone from dropping something into your drink
- Never accept a drink from someone that you don't know and trust
- Drink from a bottle rather than a glass. This is because it is more difficult to spike a bottle due to the smaller opening at the top.
- When you are not drinking, keep your thumb over the top of your bottle or if you do have a glass cover it with your palm.
- Never leave your drink unattended and be sure to keep an eye on your friend's drinks.
- Keep an eye out for anyone looking suspicious nearby.

How to prevent yourself from being injected
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times.
- If someone suspiciously approaches you move away immediately.
- Avoid standing in large crowds or queues.
- Avoid putting your hands down on surfaces such as the bar, especially when it is crowded.
- Stay in a group of people that you trust and know well. Safety is being in numbers.