Trigger Warning: This article addresses the topic of being roofied, which involves the involuntary administration of substances without consent, and includes discussions about sexual assault. Reader discretion is advised
The term “roofies” is most commonly used to refer to a drug called Rohypnol, which is the trade name for flunitrazepam.
Flunitrazepam is a central nervous system depressant that belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. It is sometimes used for muscle relaxation or as an anesthetic.
However, “roofies” can also refer to substances that are slipped into people’s drinks without them knowing as a way to target them for sexual violence.
“Roofie” is the slang term used for the drug Rohypnol, which is commonly used as a date rape drug.
The word “roofied” is short for the brand name “Rohypnol” and refers to someone unknowingly being spiked with drugs with the intention of sexual assault.
Other commonly used names for Rohypnol include roche, ruffles, and forget-me drug.
“Roofies” contain Rohypnol or other common date-rape drugs such as gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) or ketamine.
GHB is also known as “liquid x” and is often misused for its ability to increase suggestibility and passivity and cause amnesia, according to the DEA.
Rohypnol causes extreme drowsiness, blackouts, reduced inhibitions, impaired judgment, and overall debilitation that can make a person unaware and unresisting to sexual assault.
In high doses, a person can become unconscious and may not remember what happened to them.
A roofied drink is when a drug has been slipped into a person’s drink without them knowing it.
Rohypnol is tasteless and odorless, which makes it very difficult to detect. Since it can be so hard to tell if a drink has been roofied, it is important to keep your own drinks close to you when you are going out and to not accept drinks from strangers.
Some people abuse Rohypnol as a way to get “high” or combine it with alcohol to become highly intoxicated, which can be very dangerous.
However, roofies are often abused to target victims of sexual assault.
Unfortunately, roofies are commonly used to cause sexual assault.
The perpetrator will slip a drug into a person’s drink without them knowing to cause symptoms like extreme drowsiness, unconsciousness, and loss of memory so that they can debilitate them.
A roofie attack is when a perpetrator spikes a drink of an intended victim in order to take advantage of them.
When a person gets roofied, they can become dizzy, nauseous, unconscious, and experience a loss in memory, along with many other symptoms.
When a person gets roofied, they may feel extremely drunk and “blackout,” where they temporarily lose memory or consciousness.
Drink spiking a person to sexually assault or rape them is also known as alcohol or drug-facilitated sexual assault.
If you have ever been sexually assaulted and are looking for help or support, you can call the national sexual assault hotline at 1-800-656-4673.
Being roofied is never the victim’s fault, but there are signs and symptoms to watch out for to help keep you and the people around you safe.
One way to prevent being roofied is by keeping your drink with you at all times when you are out and not accepting drinks from strangers.
It is also important to go out with people you trust and ensure everyone looks out for each other.
If someone seems extremely intoxicated, especially if they have only had a couple of drinks, make sure to get them somewhere safe and get help if they need it. It can be helpful to watch for signs of being roofied like loss of consciousness, dizziness, difficulty moving, or nausea and vomiting.
Getting roofied is more common than many people think.
Drink spiking is commonly seen among college students in university party settings, raves, and clubs.
It can be difficult to tell when someone has slipped a drug into your drink because roofies are often tasteless, odorless, and colorless.
However, sometimes, a roofied drink may have excessive fizziness in it or look a little cloudy.
Always holding your drink or keeping it close to you and covered can help reduce the risk of a drug getting slipped into your drink.
When a person is roofied, the effects commonly begin within 10 to 20 minutes.
Roofies usually don’t have a taste, which can make it difficult to tell if a drug may have slipped into your drink.
Sometimes, a bitter or salty taste to your drink can be a sign that someone has added something to your drink without your consent.
If you think you or a friend has been roofied, make sure to get to a safe place.
It is also important to seek medical help, especially since you don’t know what you have been given and how your body may react to it.
If you have been sexually assaulted, it is also important to seek medical help so you can get care and also take exams if you do want to report the assault. You can bring them to the emergency room or call 911.
Get help from a trusted friend, and make sure you allow your body and mind to recover. It is also critical that you seek out therapy and other mental health services to help you to process the trauma of what has happened to you.
Common signs and symptoms of being roofied can include:
When a person is roofied, they may think they are extremely drunk at first or feel very confused, drowsy, and dizzy. They can have a hard time moving and feel disoriented or “foggy.”
Being roofied can make a person really sick, especially when they are given a drug in combination with alcohol, or they are taking prescription drugs already.
Often, a person who has been roofied doesn’t remember what happened to them.
The day after being spiked, a person may feel very confused, nauseous, drowsy, and anxious.
Some people describe it as feeling like a severe hangover.
It can feel terrifying to not know whether or not your drink was drugged. You may not know what to do, who to talk to, or how to get help.
You may feel embarrassed that you let yourself get into that situation, or that you should brush off the experience since you do not have a firm memory of what happened. However, it is crucial that you advocate for yourself and reach out for help.
It is not your fault, and there are people ready to help you.
Roofies can cause symptoms of nausea and vomiting.
Because roofies can make a person throw up, it can be hard to tell if a person has been roofied or is just recovering from alcohol consumption. However, with roofies, a person might have nausea and vomiting even if they have only had one or two drinks.
Roofies typically take around 20 minutes to kick in, and side effects can last up to 12 hours.
Roofies affect each person differently, especially if they have alcohol or other drugs in their system. This is why it is critical to consult medical professionals to make sure there is nothing that can cause long-term harm still in the victim’s system.
Yes, substances like Rohypnol and GHB can cause short-term memory loss, so a person may not remember things that happened during the time that they were unknowingly under the influence.
Urine tests and hair tests may be done to detect drugs like GHB or Rohypnol.
A date rape panel drug test can test for substances like GHB, ketamine, and different benzodiazepines like Rohypnol. These kinds of tests may also detect the presence of these substances even with the presence of alcohol.
Different drugs vary on how long they can be detected in urine.
It can also depend on whether you are doing a urine, blood, or hair test.
For example, GHB may be detected for up to 10 hours after ingestion, while Rohypnol may be detected for up to 60 hours after being ingested.
If you think you may have been roofied, it is best to get medical attention as soon as you can to make sure you are okay and to get tests as soon as possible.
Rohypnol can be detected in blood for up to 24 hours.
Other benzodiazepines and date rape drugs can also show up on a blood test panel.
If you think you or a friend has been spiked, it is important to call the police or go to the hospital.
It can be hard to predict how a drug can impact a person, especially when they don’t know what drug they have been given and if they are drinking, taking other substances, or on other medications.
Going to a hospital can help ensure a person gets proper care and monitoring to make sure they are safe.
Benzodiazepines are commonly used drug to spike people’s drinks. They pose a high risk of overdose, which can be fatal.
Benzos and other drugs can be extremely dangerous, especially when mixed with other substances or given to someone when they are unaware of it.
Roofies can also cause a person to become incapacitated, which can put them in very dangerous situations.
This is one of the reasons why it is so important to get help from someone you trust and to get to a safe space if you have been roofied. If you have been roofied, you should have someone trustworthy with you throughout the night to make sure you are okay.
Being spiked can be extremely scary and traumatic.
When a person is sexually assaulted, it can impact their whole life, including their mental health, physical health, and well-being.
If you or a loved one are experiencing suicidal thoughts, reach out for help. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 or call 911.
If you have been roofied, it is important to remember that it is not your fault. Talk to someone, whether it is a friend, family member, healthcare provider, therapist, or anyone else you trust.
The length of time a roofie can stay in y our system depends on the type of drug used to spike the drink.
For example, Rohypnol has a half-life of 15-35 hours, while GHB has a half-life of around 30-50 minutes.
The half-life of a drug refers to the amount of time it takes for the active substance of a drug in your body to reduce by half.
The amount of time a roofie stays in your system can also depend on a variety of other factors, such as a person’s size, age, and metabolism.
If someone has been roofied, they should get medical care to be monitored to make sure they are okay.
Treatment for being roofied will look different for every victim. However, it will likely need to involve both physical and mental care. Getting medical attention is essential to make sure that the drugs are safely leaving the body and to check for any underlying injuries or interactions.
However, to be fully treated for being roofied, the person who was attacked will need support to help them heal emotionally from the trauma of the experience. This can be done through therapy, support groups, and other mental health treatments.
Being roofied can leave the victim with feelings of shame, paranoia, self-blame, depression, and anxiety. These symptoms can last long after the physical effects of the drink wear off and make it difficult to function in their daily life.
Mental health treatment can help victims to feel safe, heard, empowered, and healed as they recover from the experience of being roofied.
If you have been roofied, it is important to get medical care and to have someone to help monitor you as the drugs leave your system.
The strongest physical effects are usually felt within the first 6 hours and typically wear off around 12 hours after ingestion.
However, the mental and emotional fallout from being attacked can last for years after the event, especially if it is not addressed.
Trying to ignore the experience or pretend it didn’t happen can make the symptoms much worse and last longer. Getting involved with therapy and support groups can help victims recover faster and more fully from the trauma of their experience.
Our goal is to provide the most helpful information. Please reach out to us if you have any additional questions. We are here to help in any way we can.
Women are not the only targets of drink spiking.
Anyone can be vulnerable to roofies, no matter their gender, size, or alcohol tolerance.
Sometimes, in spiked drinks, ice will not float.
However, this is not a reliable way to tell whether your drink has spiked.
If you suspect that your drink has been spiked, let someone know immediately and get somewhere safe with people you trust. It is also important to notify workers or managers if you are in a club or bar so that they can take proper action.
Sometimes, a person who has been roofied may be extremely drunk.
One way to tell between the two is that someone who is roofied may appear to be extremely drunk only after one or two drinks. Some people who don’t drink often may become drunk faster than others, but typically not to the point where they become unconscious.
Another major effect of being roofied is loss of memory. Sometimes, people who engage in excessive binge drinking may “blackout” and not remember certain things that happened throughout the night the next day.
However, when a person is roofied, they likely only had 1 or 2 drinks and don’t remember very much after that point until they have woken up.
The only sure way to tell if you have been roofied is by seeking medical help and getting tested for any drugs in your system.
Roofies are not approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration in the United States.
The drug most commonly used in roofies, Rohypnol, is illegal in the United States and is classified as a Schedule IV substance under the Controlled Substances Act.
Yes, some people describe the feeling after being roofied as an extreme hangover.
They might feel extremely ill and have a hard time remembering what happened to them.
Being roofied is never your fault. Learn the signs and symptoms to know how to help someone who has been roofied. Sandstone Care supports teens and young adults with mental health and substance use disorders.