People who use drugs deserve to be healthy!
No human being wants to be unhealthy and contract disease.
We took a survey of 200 drug users every person we talked with said they wanted to be healthy and look healthy. No one reported a desire to have ill health!
- Do not share any drug using equipment.
- No sharing of syringes, water, cottons, cookers, tourniquets…Do not share. Do not share. Do not Share.
- Do not share crack pipes, straws for snorting. Sharing can result in disease. HIV can be spread through sharing of syringes. Hepatitis C lives outside the body-highly infectious for up to two weeks. This creates special implications for sharing cottons, cookers and water.
- Contact your local syringe exchange for sterile supplies
INJECTION DRUG USE SAFETY
Excerpts from “Getting Off Right” and Harm Reduction Coalition (available as a whole elsewhere on the site)
- Very few people do everything perfect.
- New or Veteran, chances are that there are things you can do to use safer.
Tips and Tricks for Safer Use:
PLAN, PLAN, PLAN– You are dealing with blood and syringes take the time to think about where you are going to get busy. Are you in a safe place? Do you have sterile supplies? Do you have enough supplies? How clean is the environment you are in? Poor planning leads to poor outcomes and when your injecting drugs poor outcomes can mean disease or death. PLAN. Having someone who knows whats going on is always safest.
MOOD– This is so important for most people because how you are feeling effects your ability to make good decisions. If you are frantic, sick, angry, etc. this can make injecting so much more dangerous.
CLEAN YOURSELF and CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELF.
Be considerate of others—no one likes coming across a used needle and syringe in their apartment building or seeing bloody tissue in a public toilet, People can’t think positive about drug users if we are leaving bloody gross messes everywhere we go.
HAVE A HARM REDUCTION PARTNER or BUDDY. USING ALONE IS VERY DANGEROUS!!
Do not use alone—Try to make yourself available to other users who may need support. If you’re worried that a friend has been using too much, for instance, have them check in with you by phone after they get high to make sure everything is okay.
Injection drug use kits are supported by empirical evidence and known to reduce HIV/Hepatitis and other blood borne illnesses. Having an IDU kit is a big part of staying safe.
USE A NEW SYRINGE FOR EVERY SHOT. REUSING YOUR OWN SYRINGES CAN BE DANGEROUS BECAUSE OF BACTERIAL INFECTIONS/ BLOOD INFECTIONS. GOOD HYGIENE CAN HELP PREVENT SORES AND INFECTIONS IN THE SKIN. ALWAYS CLEAN YOUR SKIN WITH AN ALCOHOL PAD BEFORE YOU INJECT!!!! USE A NEW STERILE SYRINGE FOR EVERY INJECTION. Wash your hands and arms with soap and water.
Blood can be soaked out of all clothes by blotting COLD water on the item. HOT water sets the stain. Some people say spit works to get out stains in clothes….cold water works fine for me.
Perfect World Circumstances for Every Injection
1. Wash your arms and hands with soap and water before injection
2. Clean your skin with alcohol pad where you plan to inject
3. Use a clean tourniquet – don’t use someone else’s bloody tie. Make sure you don’t tie off too tight and release before you push your shot. More people do this wrong
4. After injection use gauze to stop bleeding and/or use band-aid
5. Clean anything else that might have blood on it
6. Safely dispose of the syringe and all the injection equipment
7. Wash off afterwards using soap and water. Cold water gets blood out of your clothes.
Have you ever seen what a used syringe looks like?
USING AN OLD SYRINGE DESTROYS YOUR VEINS! Dead Space Syringes increase your risk of disease transmission because syringes with dead space trap more blood and when more blood is trapped more virus would be in the syringe …this increases exposure risk for people using high dead space syringes.
DEMAND the FACTS!
Demand science driven and empirical date!
Know who funds the research!
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER!