Ketamine is supposed to be used by vets to sedate horses, however us humans have taken a liking to it too. But what does ketamine do to you? And are there any risks?

What is ketamine?

It’s a powerful anesthetic, the sort of thing they use to knock you out in hospital, but MEGA STRONG. Vets use it to sedate horses. If humans take it, it acts as a painkiller and can cause hallucinations.

How do people take ketamine?

Often ketamine is sold in a powder form, so people snort it. Some people eat it, or inject it to get stronger hallucinations.

Why do people take ketamine?

  • *Plays Snowman song* “You’re floating through the aiiiiiiir…” Ketamine reduces the sensations in your body so you feel like you’re floating and are disconnected from horrid ol’ reality.
  • It’s a dissociative drug, so your mind and body take a little mini-break from each other.
  • You can hallucinate, experiencing totally different ideas of reality and even have full-blown out-of-body experiences.
  • You feel really connected to EVERYTHING in the world, even that bottle opener over there, or a boring bench.
  • If you have a good trip, you generally just feel totally chilled out and really bloody happy to exist.

What are the bad side effects of taking ketamine?

  • BEWARE THE K-HOLE! You may find it impossible to move any limb of your body, combined with terrifying hallucinations you can’t escape from. Some people feel like they’re actually on the brink of death.
  • Because K numbs the body, you can bash yourself about and do all kinds of damage without feeling any pain, which is fine, until you comedown with a broken ankle and a trillion bruises.
  • Vomming A LOT is quite common, which isn’t only un-fun, but also pretty dangerous if you’re not really with it. There’s a risk you can choke on your vomit.
  • It screws up your bladder and makes it really hard to pee.
  • It can cause breathing problems and a racing heartbeat.
  • Taking K for the first time can be an alarming experience, even for those used to drugs, as it widens the gap between the mind and body.

How long does the effect last?

If you snort ketamine, it usually takes between five and 15 minutes to feel the effects. It takes less than five minutes if you inject it.

The effects last between 30 minutes and an hour.

Is ketamine addictive?

Yep. In fact, ketamine is known to be the most addictive psychedelic drug there is. Those who are into K tend to use it repeatedly, despite the impact it has on their health.

Can I drink alcohol on ketamine?

It’s not a great idea. This usually gives you vertigo, where you feel like the world is spinning. It’s also more likely to make you puke, which is dangerous.

Can I mix ketamine with other drugs?

Ketamine is so strong it’s a pretty bad idea to mix it with any other drugs – particularly other depressants like barbiturates, valium and alcohol. This can put unnecessary pressure on your heart. Mixing it with stimulants like MDMA can also give you dangerously high blood pressure.

Can ketamine wreck your bladder?

It really really can. When you’re on K, you want to pee a LOT. It can make weeing really hard, very painful, and you may even see blood in your urine. If you’re a regular user it can irritate your urinary tract, your kidneys, and can wreck your bladder so badly that it needs removing by surgery.

The grossest bit – it can make you piss out jelly.

Can ketamine affect your mental health?

Despite the obvious impact addiction has on a person’s mental health, regular use of ketamine can alter your brain in a rather odd way. In short, it can make you an egotistical arsehole.

There are a number of reports that K-users start to see patterns and coincidences in the world that others don’t, and they believe this is because they’re really important and the world kind of revolves around them. This can also lead to feelings of intense paranoia.

Can you overdose on ketamine?

It’s a very strong drug, and therefore, yes, you can take too much and potentially die. K-holes are usually the result of taking too much for your body to handle.

With all illegal drugs there’s a danger of overdosing as there’s no way of knowing how pure a drug is and how much to take.

How can I reduce the risks if take ketamine

  • Stay away from baths/ponds/rivers etc. People have died taking baths while on ketamine as your body isn’t capable of holding itself in water properly. Don’t go clambering into any tubs of water until you’re feeling normal again.
  • If you’re out clubbing and feel sick, don’t lock yourself in a toilet cubicle alone. If you lose consciousness you can choke on your vomit and no one will be able to help.
  • Don’t eat right before you do ketamine, unless you fancy vomming everything right back up again, which is dangerous if you’re sedated.
  • Don’t take too much initially as you won’t know how strong it is until the effects have hit you properly.
  • As with all hallucinogenics, try and have a sober friend with you to be there if you have a bad trip.
  • Don’t ever share needles, it just isn’t worth the risk.

What happens if I get caught with ketamine?

Ketamine is a Class C drug, so if you’re caught with some on you you’re facing a maximum of two years in prison and/or a fine.

For more information, read our ‘If caught with drugs’ article here.

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Updated on 29-Sep-2015

Photo of passed out boy by Shutterstock