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The lows after a high

THE ASIAN AGE. | RUTH PRARTHANA
Published : Mar 9, 2018, 12:16 am IST
Updated : Mar 9, 2018, 12:17 am IST

More and more party peeps are resorting to the use of substances for a high, and in some cases, this abuse can have tragic consequences...

A file photograph of Jessica Chastain in Molly’s Game where she is seen abusing substances. Used for representational purposes only.
 A file photograph of Jessica Chastain in Molly’s Game where she is seen abusing substances. Used for representational purposes only.

A Ghaziabad couple was found dead in their bathroom after an entire day of celebrating Holi recently. In a similar incident, Roshan Walson, a 22-year-old college student from Bengaluru was found dead while he was attending a night party with his friends at Vagator in Goa some time ago. Police reports confirmed that he had died of a drug overdose. In an alarming trend, many youngsters who head out for parties are now returning high, not on booze but on substances like cocaine, heroin, cannabis, etc. While substance abuse is still under the radar, with drugs so readily available now, the use of such mood enhancers at parties is on the rise.

Various drugs have different effects on one’s body. Most youngsters are unaware of the after-effects of such drugs. DJ Arjun Nair explains, “When parties run more than two to three hours, in order to sustain energy, people resort to drugs. Having usual party drugs allows one to have energy for a longer period of time. You end up dancing for almost 10 hours straight. There are also factors why such abuse occurs, Peer pressure is one. A lot of people don’t understand the full implications of what such substances can do, and they end up taking them. Drugs have become readily available and people think it’s cool. The larger issue is not being educated about drugs. Especially for first timers, they do not know what to expect, and it’s a big change. Since they don’t know what to expect, they end up consuming more than they can handle, without taking precautions. Suppose one overdoses, it starts affecting in ways that can’t be controlled. People can end up having a stroke, or not getting immediate medical attention.”

Kareena, Aliya and Shahid acted in a movie on drug abuse, Udta Punjab.Kareena, Aliya and Shahid acted in a movie on drug abuse, Udta Punjab.

The trend of trance, techno and EDM has been associated with substances that enhance the experience too. “There are different types of drugs. Marijuana, makes one feel down or calm. A psychedelic one, or mind altering one is used when they listen to psychedelic music. Then there are normal drugs. Psychedelic drugs alter minds. People are prone to heart attacks when they take large amounts of drugs like heroine etc. People who attend festivals take MDM, and not coke,” says a regular in the party circuit on condition of anonymity.

The partying scene has changed drastically. Drug abuse counsellor Chiranjeevi AR explains, “Parties now are more like an advertisement for drug abuse. In the market, there are various drugs that are available which are high in microns, like acid bloaters which were not available in the city 10 years ago, but are readily available now. Drugs like marijuana, brown sugar etc fall under downers, and drugs like acid bloaters, cocaine, etc falls under uppers that lift one’s energy and mood. Marijuana allows you to enjoy a party peacefully, but with coke, it’s an energy boost, similar to what two cups caffeine might give or more. It’s very common to find uppers at rave parties and music festivals which are the rage now. Cities have become a hub for drugs now.”

Youngster are also easily influenceble and will do anything to be accepted in their social circle. Psychologist Anikha SJ explains, “The problem is that any kind of substance — be it cocaine, marijuana, etc is available at the doorstep. The market is open, and the first people who fall prey are adolescents as their decision-making is just developing. They resort to such substances due to peer pressure and a vulnerable state of mind. The easiest thing when a person is depressed is to resort to substance abuse rather than seeking mental health intervention. They tend to choose the easier way out. There is also a lack of awareness about what these substances can do to the body. I think mental health awareness is the need of the hour.”

Tags: dead, drug overdose, cocaine