NPS (incl. Mephedrone)

Legal highs or Novel Psychoactive Substances (NPS) are substances designed to produce the same or similar effects to drugs such as cocaine and ecstasy but are structurally different enough to avoid being controlled under the legislation. Legal highs cannot be sold for human consumption so they are often sold as bath salts, incense, plant food or advertised as “not for human consumption” to get around the law. The packaging may describe a list of ingredients but you cannot be sure that is what the product will contain.

Just because a substance is sold as ‘legal’ doesn’t mean that it’s safe or legal. You can’t really be sure of what’s in a ‘legal high’ you’ve bought, or been given, or what effect it’s likely to have on you or your friends. We know that many ‘legal highs’ have been linked to poisoning, emergency hospital admissions including in mental health services and, in some cases, deaths.

Legal high harm reduction advice

Start low and go slow. Start with a really small amount. Wait at least an hour before deciding whether or not to take more.

If you snort, chop powders finely first.

Don’t inject, but if you do, don’t share works with other people.

Only use one drug at a time – mixing with other drugs can have unpleasant and dangerous side effects.

Don’t use alone – do it with other people you trust and choose a safe environment in which to use.

If you are using an NPS like Mephedrone for sex, remember to carry and use condoms.

Support & Services

If you are worried about your relationship with mephedrone, it is important to reach out. There are a number of non-judgemental friendly services who can help.

The Switchboard Ireland
Outhouse, 105 Capel St, Dublin 1.
The Switchboard Ireland is Ireland’s longest running support service for the LGBT+ community. LGBT+ volunteers are available 7 days a week on phone, email and online chat to offer confidential listening, support and information. Thursdays: Substance Abuse, Chems, Narcotics, Alcohol 6:30pm – 9pm.

Phone 01 872 1055
Contact: WhatsApp @ 089 26 74 777
Email: for support & signpost by email for other questions

The MPOWER team of peer sexual health outreach workers offer information, support and resources relating to HIV, STIs and other sexual health & wellbeing needs. The team is available to speak to you by phone, email, WhatsApp, and Zoom.

Phone 01-8733799 and ask for the MPOWER Team (Mon-Fri 10am – 5pm)
Whatsapp on 086 065 7212 (Davy), 0866002996 (Mark), 0892291869 (Diego)

Sexual Health Centre Cork
Sexual Health Centre Cork offers the services of a dedicated Sexual Health Advisor to members of LGBTQIA+ community. Aaron O’Sullivan provides sexual health advice and support in an understanding and warm environment, on a wide range of matters such as healthy relationships, sexuality, sexual dysfunction, gender and sexual identity.

You can make an appointment by sending an email to, calling the Sexual Health Centre on 021 427 5837 or contacting Aaron directly at

Visit the National Directory of Drugs and Alcohol Services and find a local service to help you

Drugs helpline: Freefone 1800 459 459

Further information on legal highs & other drugs at

or the ‘Snow Blow’ Poster:

or ‘Spice” poster: