Spiking, where someone adds drugs or alcohol to another person’s drink without them knowing, is illegal. Whether it’s done as a prank or with the intent to steal from or assault the victim here are some ways to avoid this happening to you or your friends.

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Never lose sight of your drink

It can take only minutes for someone to feel the effects of a spiked drink. Memory loss can be a side effect of many of the drugs used to spike drinks. Many victims are unaware of what has happened to them, and have very little memory of the incident, if any at all.

The best way to protect yourself and your friends from being spiked is to be aware of what you consume and never take a drink that you haven’t seen being prepared in front of you. Never leave your drink unattended, even for a moment, and if it doesn’t taste right, don’t finish it.

If you or your friends start to feel strange or unwell then you should get help and seek medical advice straight away.

Be vigilant if you're drinking with strangers

When you go out for an evening you never know who you’re going to meet, so always keep your wits about you. If someone appears to be over-friendly and eager to get you to drink, be vigilant.

If you get separated from your friends in a bar, pub or club, let them know where you are. If you happen to meet new company and they ask you to go on somewhere else, introduce them to your friends and tell them where you’re going.

Be a drink buddy

If you're out with a friend, or friends, keep an eye out for them. If they appear to be more drunk than you'd expect, dizzy or slurring their words, take control and make sure they’re okay. If you’re concerned, make sure they either get medical help or get home safely.

For further information about spiked drinks, visit Drink Aware