Most people don't intend to have a bad time when using substances. To reduce the risks of this happening to you, please also check out our info on:
Our top 10 tips to help you party safe...
At Crew, we've put our collective heads together and come up with a few trusty tips to help you stay safer while enjoying yourself when the mood takes you. We hope you always have a great time out (or at home), and if you are determined to use drugs, stay safe folks!
1. Eat before you head out
Food lines your stomach which reduces the irritation caused by alcohol & ingested substances (sore tummy or bevvy-bogs the next day!) It also slows the uptake of alcohol into your bloodstream, which can help avoid getting drunk too quickly! Alcohol & other substances slow the uptake of vitamins, like vitamin C & deplete others like the B vits. So good food and even a vitamin supplement before consumption can really help your body cope.
2. Know what you are taking
3. Just because its legal does not mean it is safe!
Legal highs and Research Chemicals can have very strong effects at really low doses due to their purity or the way they work, and there is little known about the health effects due to a lack of research. They are only legal because they have, or are deemed to have other purposes, none of which will be for human consumption! For more info on individual substances, check our drugs A-Z or for detail see our factsheets.
4. Avoid mixing other drugs and/or alcohol
Mixing substances can increase the risk of harm and even create new substances. For example mixing coke and alcohol creates a substance called cocaethylene which could put additional strain on your heart and liver. The same principles apply when taking legal highs/research chemicals with bevvy or mixing stimulants (speed, cocaine, MDMA) with depressants (alcohol, benzos). This can put much more strain on your body, so please please be careful and see how you get on with small doses if you are determined to mix. Not mixing substances can be a cheaper, safer and more memorable night!
5. Pace & Moderation...
We know, we know - the last thing you want to hear when you're up for a big night - moderation! Some good tips here are to try not to misjudge the time it takes to feel the effects of a drug: don't be too impatient and risk re-dosing too soon or taking too much. You can only get so high from a substance, re-dosing too often only increases the impact of negative effects. For more harm reduction advice, check out here.
Also, if you're out for a booze session - remember that for every two bevvies, having a juice, water or soft drink will keep you better paced and make your night cheaper. We reckon you'll have just as much fun, believe us! Rule of thumb, if you can't remember when you last had a soft drink, have a soft drink...
6. Keep hydrated!
The oldies are always the goodies... remember to keep hydrated, sipping water at regular intervals if dancing. If you're not dancing, don't overdo the water (see here) Remember, this also applies when taking legal highs and research chemicals which mimic the effects of popular stimulants such as ecstasy. Check out more info about a variety of legal highs and research chemicals here.
7. Stay safe!
Try not to use alone and tell your friends what you are taking. For more harm reduction advice if you are using substances check out here. Stick with your mates and look after each other. Check out our home safe page here for tips on how to look after you and your mates on a night out.
8. If you're a Player, play it safe...
Avoid getting any unwanted surprises by using condoms (and/or other forms of barrier method contraception)! Keep yourself safe from STI's just pop into the Crew drop in or your nearest C:card outlet for some free condoms. If it's too late, get emergency contraception from your pharmacy and a free blood test at Crew for BBVs.
9. Look after yourself the morning after "the night before"
If you've overdone it the night before, you might be in for a rough few days. For those of you who didn't manage to follow all of our tips here in helping you enjoy your night out more safely, check out our tips on how to ease the come down.
10. Try to have two alcohol free days per week, more if you are taking other substances
Your body needs a break from constant drug use no matter the season or drug type, but remember particularly at peak party times like Christmas or Summer. This will give your liver a few days off in amongst the partying to recover and repair.
Everything will benefit: your skin, your digestion, your brain & emotional state. Try to give yourself at least two days free per week to allow your body to recover from booze, or more of a break if you are using or combining other drugs. It really will keep you stronger for longer and help stop your use becoming problematic in the future.