Author: James Anderson

The Dangerous Effects of Speedballing & More

what is a speedball drugs

Alternatively, the depressant drug (e.g., heroin, fentanyl, benzodiazepines) produces a sense of calm, relaxation, and sedation. The most common combination is cocaine and heroin, but other stimulants and depressants can be used, such as methamphetamine, prescription opioids, benzodiazepines, or alcohol. The combination creates a ‘push-pull’ reaction in the brain and body. Studies have suggested that methadone reduces a person’s desire for cocaine but not the speedball combination.

what is a speedball drugs

In general, detoxification from speedballing should occur under the care of a healthcare professional who can monitor vital signs, administer medications, and provide emotional support. Additionally, speedballing increases the risk of addiction and overdose, as the user may develop a tolerance to one drug and use more to achieve the desired effect. Substance abuse, especially polydrug use, is a serious, dangerous issue. If you or a loved one suffers from substance use, seek medical advice immediately at a qualified treatment center. Most fatal overdoses occur when someone uses more than one substance at a time. The aim is to experience the positive effects of both drugs while reducing each substance’s adverse effects.

Why is Speedballing Dangerous?

In reality, the combination of heroin and cocaine can result in permanent damage to the body and increases the risk of overdosing. There are still questions about exactly how the two drugs interact and impact one another’s effects. Researchers say that the number of deaths caused by opioid/cocaine combinations has increased more than fivefold since 2010.[9] Researchers say powerful opioids like fentanyl are partially to blame. Even experienced drug users may be overwhelmed by the ingredients inside their doses. Typically, the stimulant drug (e.g., cocaine, methamphetamine) produces a rush of euphoria, increased energy, and heightened alertness.

  1. And they may say the dose is perfectly mixed, but it might include more of one element than another.
  2. Despite their potentially fatal consequences, people who use speedballs seek out the simultaneous rush of euphoria and energy they provide.
  3. As such, it’s important to detox from speedballs in a medically supervised setting.
  4. Heroin use leads to euphoric or pleasurable feelings in the body and mind.

The effects of cocaine wear off after 15 to 30 minutes, depending on how it is used (IV or snorted – not mixed but used consecutively). A significant concern for people who speedball is the increased risk of overdose. Speedballing can potentially lead to an addiction to one or both drugs. Renaissance Recovery provides a variety of addiction and outpatient treatment programs in up-scale facilities, including adventure therapy. Treating addiction and co-occurring/primary mental health conditions with expert-led, personalized care at beach-side facilities in Malibu. For informational purposes only, a link to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Open Payments web page is provided here.

This false sense of sobriety may result in frequent re-dosing. In addition to medication, individuals dealing with addiction can benefit from counseling and cognitive behavioral therapy to rewire pathways in the brain so they respond to the addiction differently. Another way to manage speedball addiction without medication is regular vigorous physical activity. The interaction between these contrasting substances can also result in a range of long-term health impacts. Our science-backed approach boasts 95% of patients reporting no withdrawal symptoms at 7 days. Informed by her personal journey to recovery and support of loved ones in sobriety, Jessica’s empathetic and authentic approach resonates deeply with the Addiction Help community.

Speedball Overdose Symptoms

Cocaine sends high levels of dopamine into the areas of the brain that control pleasure. If you or someone around you exhibits any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Describe the symptoms as detailed as possible so they can contact the appropriate response team. While you wait, lay the person overdosing slightly on their side and bend their top knee inward to keep their airways open. If there are any concerns about content we have published, please reach out to us at

While a speedball habit is incredibly dangerous, quitting isn’t easy. Opioids can alter brain chemistry in persistent ways.[16] People can feel sick when they try to quit. And they can experience deep cravings that increase their risk of relapse. People rarely know exactly what’s included inside the speedballs they’re about to use.

The Experience Blog

While little is currently known about the long-term side effects of speedball abuse, both cocaine and heroin take a serious toll on the mind and body after a prolonged period of use. The addiction to both substances can become all-consuming and lead to risky sexual behaviors, violence and interference with a person’s daily obligations, such as work, parenting or school. Other names or slang terms for combinations of heroin and cocaine include H & C, goofball, he-she and smoking gun.

Speedballing can have various effects on the body, depending on the type and dose of drugs used and the individual’s physical and mental condition. Detoxification can occur in a hospital, a residential facility, or an outpatient setting, depending on the individual’s needs and preferences. It may involve a gradual tapering of the drugs, a rapid detox under anesthesia, or a medically assisted detox with medications. Mixing different types of drugs can result in unpredictable interactions, causing negative side effects or worsening pre-existing conditions. The buildup of dopamine leads to intense feelings of alertness and energy.

When taken together with heroin in a speedball, the effect can be deadly. The concoction is responsible for the demise of several celebrities, including comedian John Belushi and actors River Phoenix and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. A countryside center providing medically supervised detox, residential treatment, and aftercare connections with a focus on trauma and early recovery. Overlooking the Los Angeles city lights, Luxe Recovery offers holistic and evidence-based treatment for substance abuse and mental health.