With a big weekend coming up soon and some people choosing to use alcohol and other drugs to party, how can you reduce the risk of things going wrong? Of course, the safest thing to do is not to use but, if that is not a feasible option for you, here are a few tips that could help you through a big weekend of partying.

Prepare yourself. Many people do not realise that going to a dance party can be as hard on your body as participating in the City2Surf. Just like a marathon, you need to prepare your body and mind for what is to come. Make sure you sleep well in the week leading up to the big event and make sure you eat well. A balanced diet is important. Good food strengthens your immune system so that you can handle problems and the stress they cause a lot better. Pre-load with water the week before to help in preparation.

Stick to what you know. As much as you may be tempted, a big party weekend is not the one to experiment with things you have never tried before. There are risks with all drugs, and those risks are greatly increased when you throw in something new to the mix. Many people road-test their drugs in the weeks prior to a big party. It is important to be aware that this does not safeguard you at all -“ the same drug taken under different conditions can have very different results. However, taking something completely new in a large party context is a surefire recipe for potential disaster.

Take regular breaks. Make sure you take the time to cool down at regular intervals during the evening. Wander around the party and take a look at the different venues. Find someone to chat to and take the time to check that all your friends are having a great time too. Remember that your pulse rate should slow down when you stop dancing and your body temperature should drop also. If this is not happening, carefully drink fluids or seek medical attention.

Most importantly, remember that the use of most drugs is illegal. For the sake of the parties and venues you attend over the weekend, be respectful of that and never put yourself or others into situations which could be dangerous.

Remember: if you do not want any negative consequences, do not use the drug and, no matter how many times you have used a substance, never be blase.

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