Drug Use

What are bath salts?

Bath Salts

Bath salts are synthetic, designer street drugs that are often marketed to teenagers and young adults as Ivory Wave, Purple Wave, Vanilla Sky, Red Sky and Blue Silk.

How are bath salt drugs different from bath salts?

Salts for use in the bathtub that can be purchased in reputable retail settings are entirely different from bath salts drugs. [1] Despite their commonplace name and “not for human consumption” disclaimers, illicit bath salts are drugs of abuse. In fact, in 2012, President Obama deemed the active ingredients in bath salts Schedule 1 drugs, meaning that illicit bath salts cannot be prescribed or sold under any circumstances.

Effects of bath salts

Because bath salts are relatively new recreational drugs, little is known about their precise chemical composition and long-term effects. They usually contain amphetamine-like chemicals, which act like stimulants.

Typically, bath salts can be administered orally (sometimes mixed with food and drinks) by inhalation or by injection. Users experience hallucinogenic and euphoric highs, though the drug’s effects vary widely depending on chemical composition.

As a result of this composition variance, it is difficult to detail the short-term effects. Most bath salts drugs cause:

  • agitation
  • anxiety
  • anger
  • paranoia
  • panic
  • sweating
  • chills
  • faintness
  • nausea
  • blurred vision
  • hallucinations
  • high blood pressure
  • increased pulse
  • chest pain

They may also cause suicidal feelings—sometimes several days after the drug has left the system.

The long-term effects of bath salts are even more difficult to gauge. Users report cravings not unlike those experienced by methamphetamine users. Not surprisingly, users are at high risk for developing an addiction. Even so, overdose is the most serious and common complication associated with bath salts use.

The importance of educating teens on bath salts drug abuse.

Despite the aforementioned legislation, the nature of bath salts and other designer drugs makes them difficult to regulate. Therefore, it is imperative that parents stay informed and educate their children about the dangers of bath salts and other designer drugs.

If you’re concerned about bath salt usage for yourself or a loved one, Caron’s individualized treatment plans can set patients on the road to recovery for life. For more information, please explore our programs or contact us.

[1] https://www.drugs.com/illicit/bath-salts.html

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