What is Nyaope ?
Nyaope is a street drug that has come into widespread use across South Africa, especially in the poorer communities and informal settlements scattered all over the country. One of the main reasons for the rapid spread and use is because it is so inexpensive to acquire and the drug is generally described as being a cocktail of various ingredients; the primary active ingredient being low-grade heroin, which is cut with various other substances to bulk up the weight and price of the product.
Nyaope and Antiretrovirals
For many years it has been said that Nyaope contains antiretroviral drugs. Analysis of samples has shown that this is in fact false due to the drug being cut with various other substances and compositional it differs from area to area. There is no way of telling what’s actually in it. In some areas Nyaope contains methamphetamine.
Effects Of Nyaope
Nyaope can be rolled and smoked with marijuana and/or tobacco or it is diluted and injected intravenously. The “high” from Nyaope creates a feeling of euphoria, contentment and relaxation. The effects of smoking it are less potent, and as dependency builds the preferred method of use becomes intravenous injection as this produces a more intense high. After the initial effects, a feeling of drowsiness and euphoria can persist for several hours. Mental function is clouded and heart functions as well as breathing function are slowed. Other side effects include nausea, vomiting, sneezing, yawning and itching.
Through repeated Nyaope use the user builds up tolerance and physical dependence, this is the main reason that Nyaope users graduate from simply smoking it to injecting. The amounts they use increase and the user needs to use more often in order to avoid the effects of withdrawal.
- Excessive yawning or sneezing
- Stomach cramps
- Severe muscle and bone aches
- Involuntary spasms in the limbs
The fear of withdrawal and the associated pain is so intense, that users of Nyaope are willing to go to any lengths to maintain their use.
Dangers Of Nyaope Use
The long-term effects of using Nyaope can be devastating and long-lasting. Those who inject are at risk of contracting blood borne viruses such as HIV and Hepatitis, blood poisoning from the contaminants used to cut the the drug, bacterial or fungal endocarditis, abscesses from continual injecting and decreased kidney function.
The use of Nyaope has risen dramatically in areas with high levels of poverty, the main reason for this is because the drug is highly addictive and cheaply available. The users end up resorting to crime to maintain their use and avoid the intense symptoms of withdrawal. The eventual cost is much higher than the cost of that first hit.
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