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  1. chillinwill
    "I am just so happy that I can sleep normally, it's such a relief to fall asleep without passing out because of drugs or alcohol."
    View attachment 11023
    Mikaila Tyhurst from Crumpsall in Manchester has been ravaged by the chemical gamma-butyrolactane (GBL), which is used as a party drug.

    Her once pretty blonde looks are gone - instead what stares back is a gaunt face, puffy eyes and a toothless grimace.

    She started taking GBL when she was just 18. Now she is trying to repair her life after losing four years to the drug.

    She has been receiving treatment in The Priory, a rehabilitation clinic.

    As she recovers, the 22-year-old says: "I am never going back there again."

    At 18 she had dreams of becoming an air stewardess, but now she is simply happy to get a sleep not induced by drugs.

    "I was scared of the withdrawal symptoms, I was terrified that the shakes were going to start. And when the shakes start then the hallucinations follow.

    "When I first arrived in the Priory I was quiet and I was a bit nervous, but after that I started to love it.

    "It was nice in there and I enjoyed being in there at the same time I was getting help, but it's going to be a difficult road."

    The mother-of-one went to workshops about the effects of alcohol and talked about her experiences with former addicts.

    "I used to just pass out after I had drank too much or taken too many drugs. I used to sleep anywhere.

    "Now I put my pyjamas on and go to bed."

    Her front teeth were knocked out in a drug-induced fall, she has liver damage and four months ago she nearly died of an overdose.

    She took the drug almost every day for four years.

    GBL is an industrial solvent and there is no law against possessing it.

    However, when swallowed it behaves like the banned drug GHB. It can make user feel euphoric, but it highly addictive and can also cause unpleasant effects including unconsciousness, muscle spasms and vomiting.

    Beating the habit is not easy, with extreme anxiety, nausea and hallucinations all possible.

    Despite this, she is determined to conquer her addiction.

    "If I ever think about having some GBL or some drink, I just have to think, 'What's another bottle? How is that going to help? I'll drink that and then I'll be back in the same place'.

    "I want to spend time with my little girl."

    Following campaigns from by who have lost loved ones to GBL, Home Secretary Alan Johnson has said he wants to tackle the problems around such chemicals.

    He said: "There is a perception that many of the so-called legal highs are harmless.

    "However, in some cases people can be ingesting dangerous industrial fluids or smoking chemicals that can be even more harmful than cannabis."

    October 6, 2009
    BBC News
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/manchester/8292353.stm

Comments

  1. chillinwill
    Re: Mikaila Tyhurst (girl ravaged by the chemical GBL) says she enjoyed her time in r

    Party drug girl 'amazing' after detox

    A WOMAN addicted to a legal 'party drug' which wrecked her looks has completed detox and is about to start a new life.

    Photos taken on Mikaila Tyhurst's 18th birthday, and four years later, showed how abusing GBL had taken a dramatic toll.

    But Mikaila, 22, from Crumpsall, took part in a 10-day detox programme and says she now feels 'amazing'.

    Addiction

    She bravely told of her addiction to GBL, which is similar to date-rape drug GHB, to warn other young people about its effects.

    She has previously made several attempts to stop but says she had never been so determined to get clean.

    Mikaila said: "I am feeling amazing. I have been sleeping naturally all through the night - it has been years since I've been able to do that.

    "When I first got to the detox unit I had to take a lot of drugs, large doses four times a day but that has reduced right down and I'm fine now on my own.

    "I felt awful, really terrible for the first few days but I knew I just had to get through it - I kept thinking: 'If I don't beat this it will kill me.'

    "I never want to take GBL again, it has taken too much from me already."

    Mikaila hopes this is the first step on the road to rebuilding her life.

    Her main priority is to find a place of her own to live.

    She worked as a shop assistant after leaving school but dreamed of becoming an airline stewardess.

    She was introduced to GBL when she was 18 and the addiction wrecked all her plans for the future.

    Over the last two years she has taken GBL almost every day.

    Her hospital notes show that she was repeatedly admitted to A&E at North Manchester General, often brought in by ambulance.

    Unconscious

    She was often unconscious, has been found collapsed or suffering fits, and medics have reported bumps and bruises including serious head injuries.

    Mikaila was admitted to intensive care for 11 days in June after collapsing. She was diagnosed with liver failure and needed a series of blood transfusions.

    She had previously attended A&E in May when she was vomiting blood, in March after suffering a fit, and she was taken in by ambulance in February after collapsing.

    Dr David Fitton, a GP who works at Mikaila's local health centre, referred her for help with her addiction in July this year.

    Complete withdrawal time varies but it is usually between five and 10 days.

    Experts recommend treatment to stabilise anxiety and psychotic symptoms.

    Amanda Crook
    October 9, 2009
    Manchester Evening News
    http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/s/1163652_party_drug_girl_amazing_after_detox
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