If you are part of the queer scene, or the nightlife scene, then you definitely heard about the term chemsex; for those of you out there that don’t know what this means, don’t worry because we are here to teach you everything you need to know about chemsex. To cut to the chase, it is a way of using drugs to enhance sex.
Chemsex can be fun, but there is a lot of risks associated with this. This is because the drugs used during chemsex reduce inhibitions and increase desires. So, without further ado, let’s dive into this blog and learn more about chemsex and the risks this might entail.
1. What is chemsex?
Chemsex involves the use of drugs to enhance one’s sexual prowess. It is commonly referred to as party, chemfun, play, or even PNP. People usually do these drugs before having sex as they alter the physical sensation they are having during these specific sexual intercourses. According to studies done on this matter, it has been shown that these drugs usually increase pleasing and increase people’s ability to last longer during intercourse.
These studies have also shown that these drugs can also change the psychological experience of these people as the drugs remove most inhibitions and thus increase their overall demeanor and confidence. The effect of chemsex usually lasts for hours on end, and this practice often involves having sexual intercourse with more than one partner and is usually done at parties.
The use of chemsex is most commonly used by queer men who are attracted to other men, but straight people also dabble in drugs and alcohol to enhance their sexual prowess. However, chemsex can also be done just between couples or even just alone for masturbatory purposes. However, it is important to note that chemsex may have some serious sexual health risks, which we will delve deeper into.
2. What drugs are used?
There are no specific drugs that are used for chemsex, but there are some drugs out there that people prefer to use when they partake in these activities. These drugs are known to change one’s overall mood and demeanor. The three main and popular drugs used during chemsex are:
Crystal meth (crystal methamphetamine)
GHB, GBL, G, or Gina (gamma-hydroxybutyrate/ gamma-butyrolactone)
Meph or meow (mephedrone)
These three different drugs are all mood and sensory altering drugs, and they each have very different physical and mental effects on the users. These drugs can be taken on their own but are usually mixed with alcohol or other drugs like ecstasy or even cocaine.
3. The Sexual risks of chemsex
Chemsex drugs are mood-altering drugs which means that they change and affect how we feel and behave. When you mix these drugs with sex, they usually aren’t a good mix and can increase the risk of catching sexually transmitted infections and HIV in a number of ways.
Because chemsex drugs usually decrease your inhibitions, this means that you are less likely to practice safe sex, even if you intended on it beforehand. You might also not remember everything you’ve been up to when you were on these drugs.
These mood-altering substances can also make you forget to take your PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis), making you more vulnerable to HIV, especially if you aren’t using any sort of protection. If you are HIV positive, using PrEP might also make you forget to take the medication that makes you undetectable and prevents you from passing it to your sexual partner(s).
Most people usually use chemsex drugs during parties, and this means that they are more likely to have sex with multiple partners, which means that they have an increased risk of being exposed to HIV or other STIs.
Chemsex drugs like GHB also have an anesthetic effect which means that you may have more forceful sex without even realizing or feeling it. The thin lining of the anus is easily torn or damaged during lubricated anal sex, and this increases the risk of STIs and HIV infections.
4. Other health risks
The drugs people use to have chemsex may lead to other health issues or complications. It is very easy to take too much GHB, and this may cause you to pass out and leave you vulnerable to sexual assault. Remember, if you find someone unconscious during one of these parties, help them out and protect them from potential predators.
Consent is sexy and is something that you should always ask for when having sex with someone, and sexual assault is never acceptable, no matter the circumstances. And remember that if you are a victim of sexual assault, it is never your fault.
Because the drugs used for chemsex are mood-altering substances, they don’t have the same effects on everyone, and while most people might enjoy this experience, it is the worst experience of their life for some people. These drugs may make you frightened, confused, and even paranoid and make you lose touch with reality, and you might even have really convincing hallucinations.
After the use of chemsex drugs, some people have a comedown period where they feel low and depressed. It is also important for you to remember that some anti-HIV medications don’t mix well with chemsex drugs and can even lead to death. In some cases, the interactions between crystal meth and ritonavir have led to death.
5. Can you have safe sex while on chemsex drugs?
The short answer is yes, but you have to be careful of a lot of things which we will delve into deeper. Some people discover and enjoy their sexuality while on chemsex drugs as this might be very liberating, but you should be aware that taking these drugs is never safe. While on these drugs, don’t let anyone pressure you into anything that you don’t want to.
Here are some rules and tips that you might want to follow when having chemsex:
- Don’t use it for too long or too often: the longer your party and are under the effect of these drugs, the more you are prone to feel its bad effect and have hallucinations. Just like with any drugs, the more you use them, the more you are likely to be dependent on them.
- Know your limits: Before you take any drugs, ask yourself what you are willing to do and where you draw your limits.
- Know your status: Knowing your status is important as it helps you stay ahead of the game and means that you will get the help needed if you are positive. Have regular testing to know your status and know if you have other STIs. This will keep you and others healthy.
- Pack protection: Make sure that you have lube and condoms with you whenever you’re going to have chemsex.
- Party with people you trust: Know who you are going to party with and create a buddy system where you will always look out for each other while doing chemsex. Remember, if you are leaving the party with a stranger, notify your buddy where you are going and share your location with them.
- Set reminders: If you are on PrEP or take HIV medications, then you ought to set reminds to remind yourself to take your medications.
- Stay aware: Remember which drugs you’ve used and have taken, and learn when it is time to stop. If you are doing intravenous drugs, then don’t share your syringes or needles with anyone, and never let anyone else inject you or use their needle.
Remember, whether you are practicing chemsex or not, remember to take your PrEP or HIV medications. Else always practice safe sex. Sound off in the comments section below and tell us what you want to read next and if you want to read more about chemsex.