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Etizolam (Eh-tiz-o-lam) also known as Etizola is an unclassified benzodiazepine which has become popular in recent years as a legal high. Etizolam is prescribed as a medication in some countries but is not currently licensed in the UK.
Etizolam is a depressant (downer) drug which can cause drowsiness and slow down your heart rate and your breathing. People using etizolam may feel euphoric, relaxed and calm but negative effects include short term memory loss and confusion. Other effects include depressed breathing, lack of coordination, reduced mental alertness and slowed speech. Benzodiazepines
can also reduce anxiety to dangerously low levels. This makes people care less and can result in risky behaviour.
With prolonged use, withdrawal effects can be severe and include headaches, seizures, nausea and anxiety.
Etizolam is generally sold as tablets ranging from 0.5 to 2mg. Tablets are usually blue but etizolam can also be found sold as pink tablets or a white powder. Etizolam is stronger than Diazepam (Valium) – a 1mg etizolam tablet is equivalent to a 10mg diazepam tablet. These doses should not be taken as recommendations. Try to keep doses low and have a few drug free days a week as it is each to build a tolerance to benzodiazepines.
If you choose to take etizolam:
- Keep a close eye on your drinks when you're out as some benzodiazepines have been used in attacks of a sexual nature where drinks have been spiked.
- Sleep on your side to avoid choking in your sleep if you throw up.
- Stay with friends in case you experience negative effects.
- Try a small test dose and wait at least 2 hours before re-dosing.
- Avoid mixing benzos with alcohol and other drugs.
- Withdrawal symptoms can happen even after short periods of use. Avoid taking for more than 4-6 weeks.
Etizolam is covered by The Psychoactive Substances Act. It was introduced in the UK on the 26th May 2016 and it makes it an offence to manufacture, export/import (i.e. buying from a non-UK website), supply or offer to supply any psychoactive substance, if likely to be used for its psychoactive effects. Possession is not an offence, except in a ‘custodial institution’ (e.g. prison, young offenders centre).
Despite being psychoactive, alcohol, nicotine, tobacco and caffeine are exempt from the act. Medicinal products are also exempt and it is argued that etizolam may be exempt if it is sold as a 'medicinal product'.
Etizolam, and 15 other unlicensed benzodiazepines, will join the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 as Class C drugs in 2017.