GHB Detox Program

GHB Overview

ghb detox centers

When we think of depressant drugs, we often focus on the most obvious. This would include things like alcohol, painkillers, benzodiazepines, and heroin. Of course, alcohol has been problematic since hundreds, if not thousands, of years. These other substances — opioid painkillers, benzos, and heroin — have become much more troublesome recently, particularly in the past several decades. To be clear, these are substances that are very much prone to abuse; individuals who are addicted to these substances are likely to have intentionally taken large amounts to become intoxicated. However, there are other depressants that are a bit more complicated, such as gamma-hydroxybutyric acid, which you probably know as GHB.

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What Exactly is GHB?

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Although GHB is reported to have been first synthesized in 1874, it wasn’t until much later — the 1960s to be specific — that there would actually be interest in the drug. In the early 1960s, Dr. Henri Laborit, a French surgeon known for his research on surgical anesthetics and an antipsychotic medication call chlorpromazine, had started using GHB in his studies of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that the body utilizes to calm down and relax during times of great stress.
If you’ve done much reading about other mind-altering drugs, you’ve probably noticed that many of them either act like GABA in the brain, causing profound relaxation and depressing the central nervous system, or they affect GABA receptors, causing them to bond more or less strongly with GABA. Certain depressants — particularly alcohol, benzodiazepines, and GHB to name but a few — exaggerate the GABA effect in the brain, which is what causes the characteristic drowsiness, sluggishness, and loss of coordination that’s attributed to a number of depressant drugs.

In his research, Laborit found GHB to be quite an effective drug, especially since it had minimal side effects at therapeutic dosages and had a relatively short duration of effects. However, there were caveats. For one thing, Laborit found that a therapeutic dose of GHB has a very narrow range, meaning that it’s quite easy to administer too much. As well, GHB was greatly affected by the presence of other substances in the body. In particular, if an individual drank alcohol or took other depressants while GHB was in his or her system, the effects of the GHB would be amplified to dangerous levels.

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A number of European countries used GHB in medicine. Specifically, it was often used as an anesthetic during childbirth and as a prescribed medication for individuals who suffered from severe insomnia. Eventually, however, the medical community recognized that GHB had strong potential for abuse, resulting in a steady decrease in the drug’s medical use over time. It was decided that the public should has as limited access to GHB as possible since the drug could be both abused and used to develop other recreational drugs. Today, GHB is hardly used in medical settings a all. In fact, the only instances GHB may be used is for those who suffer from narcolepsy and in the treatment of the most severe cases of alcoholism.

Recently, GHB has gained a rather ominous reputation due to its frequent use as both a ‘date rape drug’ and a ‘club drug’. As a date rape drug, GHB can be administered to a predator’s intended victim, leaving the individual either unconscious or barely conscious; this essentially makes them helpless in instances of rape and abuse. Meanwhile, the drug has become extremely popular among those who frequent bars and nightclubs; at somewhat lower doses, GHB is a depressant with certain psychoactive properties that have garnered comparisons to MDMA and ecstasy. Perhaps the most sobering reality of GHB is that it can be both a weapon and a recreational drug.

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Effects of GHB

Also sometimes called rohypnol, ‘liquid ecstasy’, or just ‘G’, GHB is enjoyed by clubgoers and individuals who attend ‘raves’ due to the euphoria that the drug can induce at certain dosages. Again, this euphoria is what garners GHB frequent comparison to ecstasy and MDMA despite the fact that GHB is a depressant while MDMA and ecstasy are largely considered stimulants. Other effects of GHB include increased sexuality, libido, and a profound sense of calm and relaxation.

However, since it’s quite easy to take to much of the drug, there are a number of adverse effects that users often experience, including dizziness, nausea and vomiting, hallucinations, sweating, loss of consciousness (which is reported by nearly 70 percent of all GHB users), and amnesia. In fact, its tendency to induce amnesia — meaning that those who ingest the drug often don’t remember the events that transpired afterward — is another reason why GHB is a favorite weapon of sexual predators; those who are victimized sometimes don’t even remember what happened to them. And the worst possible side effects include things like coma and death.

GHB Withdrawal Symptoms

When a person continues to abuse GHB recreationally over a period of time, he or she is likely to become physiologically dependent on the drug. GHB addiction essentially prevents a person from being able to go periods of time without using the drug or else they’ll experience withdrawal. The most common GHB withdrawal symptoms include anxiety, auditory and/or visual hallucinations, trembling and shaking in the limbs and extremities, sweating, panic attacks, and high blood pressure. Due to the effects of GHB on the brain’s GABA levels, it could potentially be quite dangerous for a person addicted to GHB to stop taking the drug suddenly without some sort of medical supervision.

Overcoming GHB Addiction

As dangerous as it is for a person addicted to GHB to abruptly stop taking the drug, it can actually be done safely if the individual takes advantage of the various recovery resources that are available. Typically, it’s recommended that the individual begin with an initial detox period so that the body can detoxify and severe its physical dependence on GHB. Afterward, the individual can proceed to the actual treatment phase of rehabilitation, which amounts to extensive psychotherapy, group therapy, and various other elements. Of course, there’s no one-size-fits-all program for overcoming addiction. The important thing is to find the resources that best address one’s unique needs, allowing him or her to safely and effectively overcome GHB addiction.

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Finding the right help for yourself or a loved one can be an overwhelming and stressful process. We can remove those stresses by helping you find the right rehabilitation facility. Call us now to start the road to recovery.

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Connor Barton
Connor Barton
2022-06-03
Verified
The staff here is amazing. Caring and attentive. I finally kicked the sticks and couldn’t be happier.
Jacob Rashid
Jacob Rashid
2022-06-03
Verified
So nice to have Grandma back to her old self. She has struggled with xannies for as long as I can remember. The staff were so attentive and met her where she was, not where they wanted her to be. Thank you Coastal Detox!
Tara Payne
Tara Payne
2022-05-20
Verified
I struggled with alcohol addiction for most of my life. After many tries nothing worked.It was my 43rd birthday and I wasn't gonna see 44 if I didn't get help. I called around and found Coastal. So glad I did. I am so grateful for EVERYONE there. This beautiful facility is not just a detox. They actually have programs to help you learn to live a sober life and enjoy being yourself again! Entire staff is awesome! (Ms Diana ❤️ and Mrs Karen ❤️)They really understand how your feeling as most are in recovery also. If your looking for some help please give them a call. I give them 10+stars. Five months sober now!!! Thank you Coastal!!!
Bob Hawkins
Bob Hawkins
2022-05-04
Verified
The entire staff of Coastal is great, the therapists, the nurses, the techs, everyone. It’s a great environment to begin your recovery in. As an added perk, the food is some of the best you’ll ever have thanks to the chefs.
Tony Givens
Tony Givens
2022-05-04
Verified
My experience at coastal detox was very good, the staff there is terrific. They helped me get through the process of detox in a safe and professional manor.
Jodi Silverman Goldberg
Jodi Silverman Goldberg
2022-03-21
Verified
It been almost a year!! Thank y’all
Matthew Mcnulty
Matthew Mcnulty
2022-03-07
Verified
This is the top tier Rehab/Detox center in Southeast FL. I’ve heard nothing but good things about them. Their attention to detail is impressive. They specialize in treating alcohol abuse among several other conditions. If you or a loved one are looking for a blueprint on how to sober up…Coastal Detox will lead you there.
Mary Katz
Mary Katz
2022-02-26
Verified
My experience with Coastal has been one of empathy, kindness and family. From Admissions to Nurses to techs I have never felt so cared for. Food and drink 24/7. Coastal is a place I went twice. First time 14 days next 6days later for another 11. At 59 and umpteen detoxes Coastal by far is Heaven Sent! As a Nutritionist and Trainer, I'm so happy to be back....the Mary ,who was lost:)
vicky ehr
vicky ehr
2022-01-29
Verified
Great place . Helped me so much I am a 64 year old woman and this place got me sober with dignity and kindness. I highly recommend it plus the food is incredible. Rooms are really well laid out. 2 guys to a room . Each bed has its own t.v with head sets so you dont bother your roomate. Take an extra pillow and comfort blanket from home. At least 3 pairs of pj’ s sock and shoes and comfortable clothing fit. You do your own laundry there. I will send you the link to look at. After thinking all morning this is hands down the place for you. Lots of young people and fantastic therapists. For my wonderful son who suffers. From addiction the way I do.

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