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(a.k.a. Meow, MCAT, 4MMC, Drone, Bubbles, Plant food)
What is Mephedrone?
Mephedrone is a man-made chemical that is related to cathinone, a substance found in the khat plant.
Mephedrone is now illegal and has become a Class B substance.
Mephedrone is nothing to do with Methadone – a medicine used to treat heroin addiction that can be fatal if used in the wrong way.
Why would people use mephedrone?
Mephedrone is a stimulant that can produce effects similar to those of ecstasy (MDMA) or cocaine. It is known for its euphoric effects and people using it may get a rush of energy and feel really close to others around them.
Mephedrone used to be legal, which might have given people the mistaken impression that it was safe to use.
What are the risks of mephedrone?
There is growing evidence of a number of negative side effects and some very serious risks.
No-one knows the long-term effects of mephedrone on our brain or body, but there have been a series of deaths associated with its use.
Stimulant drugs like mephedrone make the heart work harder than normal to keep the body up with what the brain wants it to do. This increases the risk of a stroke or heart attack.
Some people find they need to use mephedrone more and more often. This psychological dependence can effect how people think and feel. It can also cause trouble with debt as people buy more than they can afford.
Mephedrone may be cut / mixed with other (potentially dangerous) substances.
Mephedrone was often marketed as plant food – it is NOT. This is just a way that producers tried to sell it before the law changed.
Taking any actual plant food can be extremely dangerous.
People using mephedrone might also suffer from the following effects:
- Extreme pain and damage to the nose after snorting
- Tightening of the jaw muscles and teeth grinding
- Excessive sweating
- Hands and feet turning blue
- Blotchy skin
- Heart palpitations and irregular heart beat
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fits / seizures
- Depressed mood or bad comedown after use
- Problems with short term memory
- Erection problems
Mephedrone and other synthetic cathinones such as naphyrone (‘NRG-1’), methylone (‘M1’) and MDPV are now illegal and are Class B drugs.
This means that if you are caught in possession of mephedrone you could get sent to prison for up to 5 years.
If you are found dealing mephedrone you could get a 14 year prison sentence.
Sentences can also come with an unlimited fine.
There is no safe way of taking mephedrone
The safest thing to do is not to take mephedrone at all, but if you do take it, here are some ways to reduce the risks:
- Avoid making mephedrone with other drugs, especially alcohol. Using substances together puts your health at risk and potentially be fatal.
- If you are going to use mephedrone, try and be with friends you trust to look after you in case problems occur.
- If you are going to use it, only take a tiny amount. There is no guarantee, but this may reduce the risk of a bad reaction or medical emergency.
- Try to avoid using mephedrone in an unsafe environment as it can be hard for you to stay in control.
- If you are worried that someone is having a bad reaction to mephedrone seek emergency help. Don’t delay. Get to A&E or call an ambulance.