Dirk Hanson at Addiction Inbox recently did a blog post titled Synthetic Drugs: Collected Posts, where he compiled several articles on synthetic drugs to catch readers up on the latest news with substances we keep hearing about (bath salts, synthetic marijuana, etc.). If you haven’t read, or don’t follow the Addiction Inbox blog, you should. It is a wealth of new information, scientific break-throughs, and updated news regarding addiction.
I wanted to share a few of these links with our readers, as Austin Recovery has been getting more and more inquiries and questions from media, families, schools, and even law enforcement officers on these substances over the last few months (visit our Newsroom page to see some of the recent press stories we have been involved in on the subject).
The Low Down on the New Highs: Not all bath salts are alike.
“You’re 16 hours into your 24-hour shift on the medic unit, and you find yourself responding to an “unknown problem” call…. Walking up to the patient, you note a slender male sitting wide-eyed on the sidewalk. His skin is noticeably flushed and diaphoretic, and he appears extremely tense. You notice slight tremors in his upper body, a clenched jaw and a vacant look in his eyes…. As you begin to apply the blood pressure cuff, the patient begins violently resisting and thrashing about on the sidewalk—still handcuffed. Nothing seems to calm him, and he simultaneously bangs his head on the sidewalk and tries to kick you…” [Go here]
The Triumph of Synthetics: Designer stimulants surpass heroin and cocaine.
A troubling report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) shows that amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS) have, for the first time, become more popular around the world than heroin and cocaine. Marijuana remains the most popular illegal drug in the world, and the use of amphetamines has fallen sharply in the U.S., but the world trend represents the worldwide triumph of synthetic drug design over the plant-based “hard drugs” of the past…. [Go here]
Marijuana: The New Generation: What’s in that “Spice” packet?
They first turned up in Europe and the U.K.; those neon-colored foil packets labeled “Spice,” sold in small stores and novelty shops, next to the 2 oz. power drinks and the caffeine pills. Unlike the stimulants known as mephedrone or M-Cat, or the several variations on the formula for MDMA—both of which have also been marketed as Spice and “bath salts”—the bulk of the new products in the Spice line were synthetic versions of cannabis…. [Go here]
Mephedrone, the New Drug in Town: Bull market for quasi-legal designer highs.
Most people in the United States have never heard of it. Very few have ever tried it. But if Europe is any kind of leading indicator for synthetic drugs (and it is), then America will shortly have a chance to get acquainted with mephedrone, a.k.a. Drone, MCAT, 4-methylmethcathinone (4-MMC), and Meow Meow–the latter nickname presumably in honor of its membership in the cathinone family, making it chemically similar in some ways to amphetamine and ephedrine. But its users often refer to effects more commonly associated with Ecstasy (MDMA), both the good (euphoria, empathy, talkativeness) and the bad (blood pressure spikes, delusions, drastic changes in body temperature)…. [Go here]