If you’ve been on Grindr for more than five minutes, you’ve probably received a message saying there’s a sex and drugs party going on somewhere.

It’s no secret that sex and drugs often go together. Despite being illegal, many guys believe that drugs enhance the sex they have and that taking drugs together can make people feel more connected and horny.

If you’re into sex and drugs, there are things you can do to keep yourself safe.

Be aware of what you’re taking: Always remember that the drugs you think you’re taking may differ from the drugs you actually have, especially if it’s given to you by someone you don’t really know. Also, at sex parties or ‘chillouts’ where there are multiple guys, you may come into contact with drugs you haven’t taken before or know very little about.

Safe sex: If you’re taking drugs to make you hornier, it’s easy to get carried away and forget this bit – but take along lots of condoms and lube.

Know your limits: If you’re new to a certain drug don’t just dive in headfirst and take the lot. Other people around you may be doing much more than you, but they may have a greater tolerance. It’s not a competition so take things slowly.

Don’t do anything you don’t want to: Even if your sexual partner is taking drugs, it doesn’t mean that you have to. As with everything in your sex life, the choice is always up to you. If you do decide to take drugs before sex, be aware that this may lower your inhibitions and lead to you doing things you wouldn’t normally do (such as barebacking or fisting). When high, boundaries can shift or blur, so think about this before you get into it. You always have the right to say no.

Staying with friends: Hanging out with people you know can be a good idea. It can help you feel more comfortable, relaxed and able to enjoy the sex without feeling too anxious the next day. Also, having someone you know to keep an eye on you can be useful, especially if you are new to a drug.

Stay Hydrated: It might seem like common sense, but when you are taking drugs and having sex it’s very easy to forget. Have water regularly.

If you’re drinking alcohol/on medication: Keep in mind that one drug can increase the effects of the other, not always for the better. Also be aware if you are on prescription drugs (i.e. for HIV) that some drugs may interact with them and reduce their effectiveness.

If you feel uncomfortable: Telling someone that you feel unwell can be a simple way of taking a break from a situation you are not comfortable with. You can take some time out, drink some water and think about what you’d like to do (or not do) next.

‘Booty Bumps’: A drug can be absorbed through the lining of the arse, whether as a powder (rubbed around and in the anus), liquid (injected without a needle into the arse) or in pill form (stuffed into the arse). Drugs taken this way are absorbed much faster than if swallowed and generally have a stronger effect. Drugs taken this way can damage your arse, leading to pain, bleeding or haemorrhoids.

PEP: If you wake up in the morning and feel you may have had unprotected sex you should try to access PEP as quickly as possible.

Chemsex / Slamming: When sex parties involve injecting (also known as slamming), this is often known as a ‘chems’ party or Party and Play (P&P). Injecting is the most dangerous way of using drugs and carries risks that swallowing or snorting drugs don’t involve. There are many risks involved, especially when re-injecting while high. Sharing needles (even by accident) can transmit HIV, Hepatitis and bacterial infections.

The near-immediate hit of injecting a drug can often lead to more and more drugs being taken, leading to a dependency or addiction. If you are slamming, bring your own needles and syringes.

If you are looking for advice or are concerned about drug use and sex, you can get in touch with the SX team to talk it through.