Khat

Khat

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    Khat is a stimulant drug which means it speeds up the messages going between the brain and the body. The drug is the leaves and buds of the khat plant (Catha edulis Forsk). The leaves may be used fresh or dried.

  • Common Names

    Qat

    Kat

    Chat

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    How is it used?

    People use the leaves and buds of the khat plant and the leafy green shrub that can grow to tree size.

    • Fresh leaves and buds are chewed
    • Dried khat is chewed, taken as tea or smoked

    The chewing of khat leaves is common in some countries of east Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. It has a deep-rooted social and cultural tradition in some Muslim, Somali and Yemeni cultures. In some Muslim countries in which alcohol is prohibited, khat is commonly used in social situations, although it is often condemned on religious grounds.

Side Effects of Khat

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    There is no safe level of drug use. Use of any drug always carries some risk.

    Khat affects everyone differently, based on:

    • Size, weight and health
    • Whether the person is used to taking it
    • Whether other drugs are taken around the same time
    • The amount taken
    • The strength of the drug (varies from batch to batch)

    Copied
    There is no safe level of drug use. Use of any drug always carries some risk.

    Khat affects everyone differently, based on:

    • Size, weight and health
    • Whether the person is used to taking it
    • Whether other drugs are taken around the same time
    • The amount taken
    • The strength of the drug (varies from batch to batch)

  • The following effects may be experienced immediately:

    Fast heartbeat and breathing

    High temperature and blood pressure

    Talking more and feeling energetic

    Reduced appetite

    Copied
    The following effects may be experienced immediately:

    Fast heartbeat and breathing

    High temperature and blood pressure

    Talking more and feeling energetic

    Reduced appetite

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    Long-term effects:

    Worsening of existing mental health problems

    Sleep problems

    Impotence

    Digestive problems, such as constipation

    Sore, inflamed mouth

    Mouth cancer

    Needing to use more to get the same effect

    Dependence on khat

    Financial, work and social problems

    Copied
    Long-term effects:

    Worsening of existing mental health problems

    Sleep problems

    Impotence

    Digestive problems, such as constipation

    Sore, inflamed mouth

    Mouth cancer

    Needing to use more to get the same effect

    Dependence on khat

    Financial, work and social problems

The effects of taking Khat with other drugs including over-the-counter or prescribed medications can be unpredictable and dangerous.