Alcohol is the most common drug used in facilitating date rapes. Other drugs are becoming increasingly popular on college campuses; they are Rohypnol, GHB, and Ketamine.
Rohypnol is commonly used to mix with drinks, and is usually found in tablet form. Rohypnol is odorless, colorless, and tasteless when mixed with drinks. Persons who ingest this drug often experience difficulty with moving their arms or legs, and their thinking is likely to be impaired, a victim may even appear drunk. Some of the side effects can include: headache, dizziness, nightmares, memory impairment and tremors.
GHB is gamma-hydroxybutyrate, and it is being used more frequently at clubs, bars, and other parties. GHB is most commonly found in liquid form and is usually placed in drinks and because it is usually a clear liquid, it can be easily concealed in water bottles, as well as other types of beverage containers. This drug can sometimes be detected because it tends to have an unpleasant, plastic, salty taste, and a mild odor. People who ingest GHB can experience confusion, intense sleepiness, weakness, and memory loss. Some of the side effects can include: nausea, agitation, distorted perceptions, seizures, heart and respiratory failure and even death.
Ketamine is primarily used in veterinary medicine, but is also used for limited surgical anesthesia in humans. Ketamine can be found in liquid form and also as a white powder. Ketamine can cause a person to have hallucinations and visual distortions that are similar to the affects of PCP; it can cause loss of senses, sense of time and identity, which could last from 30 minutes to 2 hours. People who ingest Ketamine can experience delirium, amnesia, impaired motor function, increased blood pressure, recurrent flashbacks, and potentially fatal respiratory problems.
What You Should Know to Protect Yourself:
- Do not leave your drink unattended, if you realize that you have throw it away.
- Do not drink beverages you did not open or prepare yourself.
- Do not drink share drinks, or take beverages that are being passed around.
- Do not drink anything that has a usual taste (i.e. salty or plastic) or appearance.
Information on Date Rape Drugs was obtained from:
Ottens, A.J. & Hotelling, K (2001) Sexual Violence on Campus: Policies, Programs, and Perspectives. New York: Springer Publishing Company