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what is it?.

"Any suspected overdoses should be treated with medical urgency, particularly where seizures, fits and respiratory failure are displayed. An ambulance should be called in this case with medical support and first aid accessed immediately if possible (if in a public place there may be medically trained individuals present). "

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hello. overdoses can be a scary thing to think about. choices want everyone to be able to see an overdose before it happens. that way you can protect yourself and others. 


Key signs of an overdose on stimulants include the following symptoms. -Dizziness, tremor, irritability, confusion. - Hostility, hallucinations, panic, headache. -Skin flushing, chest pain, palpitations, hypertension. -Vomiting, cramps, excessive sweating. -Overheating of internal organs while externally feeling cold.


Key signs of an overdose from benzodiazepines include the following symptoms. -Difficulty with or inability to breath -Bluish tinge to nails and lips -Confusion and disorientation -Dizziness -Blurred vision or double vision -Weakness -Uncoordinated muscle movements & tremors


Key signs of an overdose on hallucinogens include the following symptoms - illogical speech, impaired motor skills, speech impairment. -Rapid breathing, seizures. -Dilated pupils, blurred vision. -Memory loss. -Respiratory failure, hypothermia, hyperthermia, inability to feel pain. If someone is displaying respiratory failure or seizures an ambulance needs to be called immediately.


Key signs of an overdose from depressants include the following symptoms. -Confusion, slurring of words or unable to speak. -Loss of motor coordination. -Vomiting -Headaches -Pale or blue tinged skin -Slow or irregular breathing -Seizures or fits. -Loss of consciousness If someone is experiencing seizures, fits or loss of consciousness then the recovery position should be used and an ambulance called.


Solvent use is less likely to present as overdose and more likely to cause instant death due to the risk of Sudden Sniffing Death Syndrome (SSDS). This is a form of fatal heart attack linked with a sudden rush of adrenaline & irregular hear beat. If you suspect someone has used solvents and they are not responsive you should call an ambulance immediately.


Key signs of an opiates overdose include the following symptoms. -Snoring/gurgling noises -Not able to wake -Turning blue -No pulse -Pin point pupils -Difficulty & shallow breathing If an overdose of opioids is suspected, naloxone or nyxoid can be administered to the buttocks, thigh or upper arm and an ambulance should always be called. If the person becomes conscious after naloxone is administered, try to keep them in the same place until an ambulance arrives. If they decide to leave the location then be aware of what direction they take so you can advise paramedics of this. Keep the naloxone kit with you to pass onto paramedics so that they know what dosage has been given.



what is it?.

"Solvents are a type of depressant drug, typically including glues, gases and aerosols that contain volatile substances,  which people inhale to get high."

what do they look like?.

"Solvents in themselves are typically not illegal and are often household objects. This can include glues, aerosols, paints, petrol, cleaning fluids, surgical spirit or gases."

solvent effects.

People use solvents with the aim of feeling intoxicated or reducing anxiety. In larger quantities people may experience a distortion of time and hallucinations. Side effects of solvent use include confusion, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, burns, swelling of the throat, blackouts and fainting.

harm reduction.

If someone is using solvents then they should never inhale with a bag or clothes covering their mouth and nose. This adds risk of suffocation. Solvents should not be sprayed directly into the mouth, this might cause the throat to freeze or swell, again adding risk of suffocation and SSDS. There is no safe way to use solvents and even if harm reduction is followed and if someone has experience using solvents there is always a risk of SSDS. Choices recommend that use of solvents should be stopped immediately due to this risk and support accessed. The only way to stay safe from the side effects and risks of solvents is to not use them.

solvent risks.

Risks of solvent use include damage to the central nervous system and the brain, hearing loss and limb spasms. Solvents are linked with Sudden Sniffing Death Syndrome (SSDS). Inhalation of aerosols can cause instant death due to its impact on the heart. This can occur at any point of solvent use despite any past experience with the substance. If someone survives SSDS, there is risk of permanent and irreversible damage to the brain and central nervous system.

help others.

If someone you know is using solvents, remind them of the risks outlined above and the constant risk of SSDS. Aerosols can be removed or put in a safe place to minimize opportunity and triggers for use. Consider supporting them to contact or access relevant support services if you are comfortable with doing this. If you find someone who you believe is under the influence of solvents and they show signs of unconsciousness or breathing difficulties always call for medical help immediately.

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