DON’T BE IN THE DARK ABOUT LEGAL HIGHS.
What are they?
'Legal highs' are unregulated substances that mimic the effects of illegal drugs and can be just as dangerous. They have many names including Legals, New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) and herbal highs. They have been sold as bath salts or plant food and labelled 'Not for human consumption' to get around the law.
Some will make you feel 'up', some make you woozy and others make you feel trippy. As with illegal drugs, there could be unpleasant side effects such as your heart beating too fast, feeling dizzy or passing out. There is often a comedown period where users may feel sick, anxious, bad tempered or paranoid.
How much is too much?
Even a very small dose can have unpredictable and unwanted effects, as many of these substances haven’t been tested. The active chemicals can vary dramatically even with products which have the same name. 'Legal Highs' can also contain illegal drugs. Using large quantities increases the risk of side effects or overdose. Combining with other drugs and alcohol also increases the risks.
Are they permitted at festivals?
No- Because of the dangers, risks and unpredictability, the sale and possession of legal highs won’t be permitted at any festival taking part in this campaign and many other festivals in the UK. You will have them confiscated and you may be refused entry to the site.
Any drug can potentially lead to addition and mental health problems, even drugs branded as 'Legal'. Substances such as Mephedrone, that can be highly addictive, were once legal.
Dangers of Overheating.
Some legal highs can cause overheating and dehydration, which can be extremely dangerous. Being in a hot, crowded environment, not drinking enough water and drinking alcohol only makes this worse. Drinking too much water is also dangerous and safe recommended limits are no more than one pint in one hour.
Look after yourself and your mates.
It’s really important to seek help immediately if you or your friends become unwell. Never allow them to take more substances to 'straighten up'; this will just make them worse. At festivals, there are welfare and medical points around the site where you can seek help if needed.
Where can I find out more?
Why Not Find Out
Providing information to help you make informed decisions about legal highs.
Scottish Drugs Forum
A membership based drugs policy and information organisation and national resource of expertise on drug issues.
Know the Score
Information and helpline set up by the Scottish Government.
An organisation dedicated to raising knowledge and information skills of parents and other family members about the dangers and risks of legal highs and club drugs.
Talk to Frank-
UK Government funded advice centre.