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Chemsex is a term used to describe when a person takes an illicit drug or drugs purely for the purpose of enhancing and facilitating sex.

The drugs associated with Chemsex are also used to prolong sexual activity, lower inhibitions and increase the desire for sex.

Common Chemsex drugs include crack cocaine, cocaine, ketamine, mephedrone, crystal meth, cannabis, GBL and GHB.

Alcohol is also known to increase sexual desire and lower inhibitions, but unlike Chemsex drugs it can have the opposite effect of impairing sexual performance. However it is not uncommon for Chemsex users to combine different drugs and alcohol to gain the desired effect.

Someone suffering from an addiction to Chemsex will often find it very difficult to ask for help. Chemsex addicts often feel a great deal of shame around their behaviour and fear the judgment of others and the repercussions of admitting their problem.

Here at Delamere we successfully treat all forms of addiction with the utmost compassion, discretion, understanding and without judgement. If you or a loved one need help for a problem with Chemsex call and speak with one of our addiction experts today.

We guarantee you will feel immense relief after talking with a dedicated member of our team.

image of various coloured prescription drug pills

What is Chemsex and Who uses Chemsex?

Chemsex is more commonly associated with the gay and bisexual community and is very popular in sex clubs and especially prevalent in the capital cities such as London and Edinburgh.

Some Heterosexuals also engage in Chemsex but it is less popular and tends to be less problematic when used in monogamous relationships

Because Chemsex always involves a drug or alcohol, to the extent where someone’s sexual performance and desires are unnaturally heightened and altered, there is no safe form of Chemsex.

Is Chemsex addictive?

Chemsex is a lesser talked about activity but nevertheless it is dangerous and can lead to addiction. Someone using Chemsex will receive a pronounced euphoric high from the drug they use AND from the sexual activity they engage in.

For this reason Chemsex can be extremely addictive. A frequent engager of Chemsex risks developing a dual addiction that can be very complex to treat.

They risk becoming addicted to the drug they use to facilitate sex as well as a form or forms of sexual activity. Whether that be pornography, premiscuous behaviour or extreme and dangerous forms of sex.

The illicit drugs commonly associated to facilitate Chemsex are well known for their addictive properties, especially the likes of crack cocaine and crystal methamphetamine. Using these drugs often leads to binges as they both produce intense cravings for more.

Sex itself can also become problematic for some, more so for Chemsex users. Someone who regularly engages in Chemsex will often find themselves taking bigger risks and engaging in more extreme and dangerous sexual activities.

Chasing the initial high they felt at the beginning, they become immune to the effects of the drugs and sex that once satisfied them. Like all addictions, addiction to Chemsex is progressive in nature and leads to the sufferer incurring more and more serious negative consequences. Despite this, a Chemsex addict will find themselves compelled to continue.

The effects of Chemsex

The effects of Chemsex include:

  • Increased confidence
  • Euphoria
  • Enhanced and prolonged sexual performance
  • Reduced inhibitions
  • Increased sexual desire
  • Risk taking (not using protection ie condoms)
  • Sleeping with multiple partners
  • Sleeping with strangers
  • The desire for more extreme forms of sex
  • Long term sexual disfunction
  • Impaired decision making
  • Impulsiveness
  • Paying for sex
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Abnormal heart rate
  • Staying awake for prolonged periods of time

“I am a Chemsex addict”

To provide a greater understanding of how Chemsex can destroy a person’s life, we are grateful to have this testimony from one of our previous guests here at Delamere:

‘As a former Chemsex addict, I used crystal meth to get high and indulge in all kinds of promiscuous behaviour. Part of the excitement for me was arranging the hook ups and picking up my drugs – eagerly anticipating the night ahead. My family had no idea what I was doing or where I was disappearing to each weekend. As a single gay man I was rarely questioned.

At the start it was all about the sex, the drugs were an added bonus. As I found myself becoming more and more submerged in the Chemsex scene, it became less about the sex and more about the drugs. Then it was JUST the drugs. In the end crystal meth literally had me by the balls. I was a mere shadow of my former self and was consumed with self loathing

The hardest thing I’ve ever had to do was confess to my mother and sister that I had a problem. Of course, they already knew and were just waiting for me to ask for help. I spared them the sordid details but they got me the professional help I needed.

I attended Delamere for detox and rehabilitation. I know now that just one hit of meth would take me straight back. I understand I have a disease and continue to work hard on my recovery.

I’m just over 6 months clean now and would not yet entertain the idea of a relationship. I understand I still have a great deal of work to do on myself before becoming intimate with another.

Recovery has been hard and delightful at the same time. I found out whilst at Delamere I am HIV positive. A direct consequence of my reckless behaviour. I have no idea where, when or with whom I contracted it. I also have to live with the fact I quite possibly unknowingly infected others.

Obviously, this is a devastating blow that I’ve had to come to terms with. I can only thank the amazing team at Delamere for their continued unconditional love and support.

I plan on undertaking further therapy in future, when I’m ready, so I can eventually come to know and experience true intimacy without the need or risk of jeopardising my recovery.

I fully understand that right now I need to continue focusing on me and my recovery. I still have hope this is possible, Delamere have taught me anything is possible if I work for it.

To anyone suffering, please don’t suffer alone, tell someone, anyone. Ask for help.

Chemsex nearly killed me, I certainly used up all my lives with the risks I took. It’s by God’s grace and the compassionate therapy I underwent at Delamere that I am here today, free from the misery, pain and the shame!’

What is Slamsex and is Slamsex dangerous?

Slamsex is a term used for when a person intravenously injects the drugs straight into their system just before or during sex.

The effects of Slamsex are extremely intense and immediate due to the drugs directly entering the bloodstream as opposed to being smoked, snorted or swallowed.

A person who engages in Slamsex is at increased risk of addiction, immediate overdose, death and contracting a blood-borne virus such as HIV and herpes.

Those who are new to the Chemsex scene are less likely to try Slamsex, it tends to be a progression and results from developing a tolerance to taking drugs by other means.

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Is Chemsex dangerous? – The risks and dangers of Chemsex

Chemsex is very much a double edged sword, not only are there very real dangers associated with the drugs used but also from the sex itself.

You can find out more about the dangers associated with Chemsex drugs by visiting our other pages.

Dangers and risks of Chemsex include:

  • Contracting STIs and STDs such as herpes and chlamydia.
  • Contracting blood borne viruses including HIV and hepatitis (through unprotected sex and through sharing drug paraphernalia).
  • Unwanted pregnancy.
  • Risk of being sexually assaulted or raped.
  • Risk of being subjected to violent sex and violence.
  • Danger of overdose or an adverse reaction to the drugs and death.
  • The combination of drugs and sex puts excessive strain on the heart and can lead to heart attack or heart failure.
  • Risk of developing a drug addiction, sex addiction, or both.
  • Partaking in sexual behaviour you later regret and would not normally consider without the influence of drugs.
  • Not being able to form healthy and intimate relationships with others.
  • Risk of engaging in dangerous forms of sex including strangulation and suffocation.
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Treatment for Chemsex addiction

Chemsex is a recognised addiction that we successfully treat at Delamere’s addiction treatment and behavioural wellness facility.

Here, you will learn that addiction in any form is a chronic and progressive disease of the brain, characterised by compulsion, relapse and continuation despite negative consequences.

Our first class purpose built addiction treatment clinic is one of a kind in the UK and is discreetly placed on the privacy of Cheshire’s beautiful woodlands.

Our team of multidisciplinary highly skilled professionals (most of whom are in recovery themselves) can provide you or a loved one with a bespoke medical detox and intricately tailored comprehensive rehabilitation programme. Providing you with the tools and skills needed to maintain a lasting and fulfilling recovery.

Recovery from Chemsex addiction IS possible here at Delamere. Call us today to find out how we can help you.