The effects of the drug Cat

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The effects of the drug Cat

26 November, 2021Articles, News

Cat is one of the most commonly abused drugs in South Africa. Due to its highly addictive composition and its popularity as a drug used in tandem with downers, at Crossroads Recovery Centres we have a vast amount of experience with facilitating the detox process from this potent substance. This brief guide will familiarise you with what the drug cat is and how addicts are detoxed from it.

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Methcathinone (also known as mephedrone) is an addictive psychoactive substance, and abuse of this drug is rapidly increasing in South Africa. A common street name for Methcathinone is ‘CAT’, and its use is mostly associated with the club and rave scenes. There is no medical or pharmaceutical use for this substance and it is mainly produced in illicit ‘Cat labs’, for recreational purposes. According to reports there has been an increase in the use of the drug cat since 2010.

It is often used as a substitute for other stimulants such as cocaine and ecstasy. Cat is not to be confused with the Khat plant, the leaves of which are chewed as a central nervous system stimulant.

The effects of Cat have been described as being very similar to that of cocaine. Unlike cocaine, the ‘high’ effect can last up to six hours, making this a very popular recreational drug. Overdose can occur with any quantity of drug used, and the user is always at risk. Overdose may cause seizures, an increase in body temperature, respiratory failure, coma, and/or death.

Common side-effects include :

  • Intense feelings of euphoria
  • Increased energy
  • Increased confidence
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dilated pupils
  • Feelings of love or empathy towards others
  • Sociability and talkativeness

Adverse effects of Cat include:

  • Nausea
  • Damage to the nasal cavities
  • Nosebleeds
  • Involuntary teeth grinding
  • Hallucinations
  • Blurred vision
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mental confusion
  • Muddled speech
  • Liver, kidney, lung and cardiovascular damage with prolonged use
  • The loss of the ability to make rational decisions
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Memory loss
  • Insomnia
  • Amphetamine psychosis
  • Paranoid delusions
  • Suspicion
  • Violent behaviour
  • Symptoms similar to those of Parkinson’s disease from injecting the drug
  • Greater risk of stroke, coma or death resulting from a blood pressure increase and an irregular cardiac rate

If you or a loved one needs assistance an addiction to Cat – know that help is readily available. The road to recovery is not always an easy one but getting yourself or your loved one the best possible care from the team at Crossroads Recovery Centre, provides you with a map to sober, healthy living. No matter how bad things seem, there is hope and it’s only a phone call away. If you or anyone close to you needs help with an addiction to sex, gambling, substances, alcohol or food, please contact us for a free assessment.

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