Have you ever consumed a spiked beverage? Odds are that you have. It turns out that the spiking of drinks has gotten more dangerous.
In college there were many times where we spiked drinks – usually with grain alcohol (190 proof). I witnessed firsthand the devastating effects of grain alcohol on a human body. It can be a gut-wrenching experience I assure you.
Frightening new data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reveals that in 2009, more than 14,000 people visited hospital emergency room for intentional drug poisoning.
To fully understand what it means to “spike” a drink I will defer to an expert. Peter J. Delany, PhD, the director of SAMHSA’s Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality in Rockville, Maryland defines intentional poisoning as an attempt “to harm someone by deliberately getting them to take a potentially harmful substance without their knowledge.”
SAMHSA’s Drug Abuse Warning Network, which monitors drug-related emergency room visits in the US, says almost two-thirds of those poisoned were women, and 60 percent overall involved alcohol in combination with other drugs.
Such poisonings often occur when a known date rape drug is surreptitiously dropped into a cocktail at a bar or nightclub — which can precede a sexual assault or robbery.
To protect yourself, be aware of where your drinks are and reject free drinks from people you don’t know. And even if you’re intoxicated or taking illicit drugs, you should seek help immediately if you start to feel odd. An online alcohol class also would be a good place to start.