Legal highs are substances which produce similar effects to illegal drugs (such as cocaine, cannabis and ecstasy) but are not controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act. These new substances are not yet controlled because there is not enough research about them to base a decision on. However, more and more ‘legal highs’ are being researched to see what the dangers are and if they should be made illegal.
The law is changing however. From April 2016 the Psychoactive Substance Bill becomes law, effectively banning not only all NPS, but all psychoactive substances with the exclusion of medicines, alcohol caffeine, nicotine and some foods.
For in depth information on a range of legal highs, click here.
There is also a campaign running locally in Oxfordshire around legal highs please click here for more information.
What are the effects?
The effects of 'legal highs' are various. Legal highs aim to replicate street drugs, so for example they can be stimulants, depressants and hallucingens.
Risks to your body and mind?
As with all illegal drugs, Legal Highs have psychological and physical risks. Do not be misled by the term 'legal', as with alcohol, they can still cause a range of unforseen problems for your body and mind.
Legal doesn't mean safe
Because there are so many you can’t really be sure what’s in a ‘legal high’ that you’ve bought, or been given, or what effect it’s likely to have on you.
This is especially true when mixed with alcohol and/or other drugs, the risks and side effects may increase.