Drink spiking is a lot more prevalent than you may think. When it involves rape, it will be in the news. But there are also some people who think that spiking someone’s drink is “funny”. In some cases, a spiked drink will make people feel drunk or ill. It could lead to a trip to the ER. When strong drugs are used to spike a drink, it can lead to long term psychological damage. So, spiking someone’s drink, under any circumstances, is anything but funny. Here are the facts about drink spiking. And, some tips on how to prevent your drink being spiked.
What Is Drink Spiking?
Spiking a drink means adding something to a person drink without them knowing. It could be extra alcohol, or it could be drugs. It can happen in any social situation where people are drinking. Most often it occurs at party’s or at nightclubs.
Sometimes, people spike drinks for a joke. But it is also linked to crimes, including rape. When there is criminal intent, the aim is to lower a person’s defense so that they don’t resist. Historically, drink spiking has been treated as a bit of a joke. In the movie Grease, for example, Sonny spiked the punch at the National Dance-Off. However, whatever is used to spike the drink and whatever the intent is, drink spiking is a crime.
How Do You Know If A Drink Has Been Spiked?
It is very difficult to tell if a drink has been spiked. Especially if you have already been drinking and your senses are not what they would usually be. Many of the substances that people add to drinks are colorless and odorless. Extra alcohol added to an alcoholic drink may not be noticeable at all.
The symptoms of having consumed a spiked drink vary. They are often confused with a person being drunk. Because drink spiking occurs at parties and in clubs, the early symptoms are often ignored by both the victim and the victim’s friends. They are put down to the person having one drink too many. Some of the signs that your drink has been spiked are as follows:
- Feeling more drunk than you should be
- Feeling disorientated and sleepy
- Experiencing hallucinations
- Feeling confused
- Loss of Inhibitions
- Slurring of speech
- Loss of balance
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of consciousness
In serious cases of drink spiking, the victim may not remember what happened the night before. They may wake up with a very bad hangover that lasts a long time.
What Can You Do to Prevent Drink Spiking?
Preventing drink spiking is all down to vigilance. You must watch your own drinks and the drinks of your friends. A drink can be spiked in a matter of seconds. So, be aware of the danger and keep a watchful eye on your drinks. Here are some pointers on what you can do to prevent drink spiking:
1. If You See Someone Drink Spiking, Report It and Stop It
Spiking someone’s drink is not funny. If you see it happening, stop it or report to staff at the venue. And, tell a person straight away if you think their drink has been spiked.
2. Don’t Accept Drinks from Strangers
If a stranger brings you a drink, don’t accept it. If someone wants to buy you a drink, go the bar with them.
3. Watch the Bartender Closely
It is not unknown for bartenders to spike drinks. Watch the bartender closely as he or she prepares your drink. Be aware of the people around you at a bar as well. Don’t leave your drink unattended at a busy bar.
4. Party with People You Trust
When you go out to a club or party, go with friends you can trust. Then, you can watch out for each other’s drink being spiked. Discuss the issue before you go. Agree a rota of who will watch the drinks while the others are on the dance floor.
5. Don’t Leave Your Drink Unattended
Don’t leave your drink unattended, even for short amounts of time. If you go to the bathroom, have your friends watch your drink, or buy yourself a fresh drink when you get back.
6. Buy Drinks in Bottles
Buy drinks that come in bottles with screw caps. Then, you can take your drink with you to the bathroom or onto the dance floor.
7. Don’t Drink a Drink if You Think It May Have Been Spiked
If you have any suspicions at all that a drink may have been spiked, don’t drink it. This is one occasion where it is always better to be safe than sorry.
8. Don’t Drink It If You Don’t Know What It Is
If someone hands you a drink and says “Hey, try this”, don’t drink it. Only drink a drink when you know what it is, and where it came from.
What to Do If a Friend’s Drink has Been Spiked
If a friend’s drink has been spiked, your priority must be taking care of your friend. Take them somewhere quiet and stay with them. The symptoms of drink spiking may first appear to be like those of being drunk. If it is a case of drink spiking, those symptoms may get worse over time. Monitor the situation. If the symptoms get worse, call for an ambulance.
If you are in a club or at a house party, tell the manager or the host what has happened. Remember, drink spiking is a crime. If you or friend’s drink has been spiked, you should report it to the police.
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