top of page

What is Speed?

Speed is the street name for Amphetamines. A powerful synthetic stimulant drug that activates chemical processes in the body, speeding up the body and brain, leaving the user feeling awake and alert.

Speed was first introduced medically in the 1930s and was marketed over the counter as an inhaler for nasal congestion. Up until 1956, you were able to buy amphetamine-based drugs without a prescription. This “super drug” was being used amongst housewives, people who felt low and needed an energy boost, and those who wanted to lose weight. Soldiers even used it in WW2 because of its ability to keep people awake and alert.

Today the speed available from dealers has around 10% - 15% purity, with the rest of the 'speed' being made up of things like laxatives, caffeine tablets and paracetamol.

This blog post will outline some key facts on speed. So if you decide to use it in the future, you will be more aware of its effects and the tell-tale signs of overdose.

Nicknames/Street names

Amphet, Billy, Sulph, Whizz, Uppers, Base, Phet

How is it used?

(Photo credit –

Speed is often cut up into short lines and then sniffed up the nose through a rolled-up banknote or straw.

Less common ways of taking speed are:

  • To bomb it (wrap in cigarette paper and swallow)

  • Rubbed onto the gums or dabbing your finger into the speed and licking it off

  • Mixed in a drink

  • Mixed with water and injected. Injecting speed is more powerful high, but it is the riskiest way of using it.