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What Are the Long-Term Effects of Using Bath Salts?

girl buying bath salts from street dealerBath salts are a new synthetic drug derived from the khat plant that is found in East Africa.  Public health officials classify this drug as an NPS (new psychoactive substance).  This drug, known as cathinone, is unregulated and designed to mimic the effects of illegal drugs such as methamphetamine and cocaine.  Additionally, club drugs such as MDMA (Molly) contain cathinone.

How to Recognize Bath Salts

It is important to note that bath salts are not the same as the legal products designed for enhancing bath water or for soaking achy muscles, such as Epsom Salts.  In general, illegal bath salts are sold in a white or brown crystal-like powder form.  Usually, they are wrapped in plastic or foil and are labeled “not for human consumption.”  Other names used on these packages include “plant food,” “jewelry cleaner,” or “phone screen cleaner.”  Some of the street names for bath salts include:

  • Bloom
  • Cloud Nine
  • Flakka
  • Vanilla Sky
  • Luna Wave
  • Scarface
  • White Lightning

These drugs can be purchased easily on-line or in drug paraphernalia stores.

How Do Bath Salts Affect the User?

Bath salts can be smoked, snorted, swallowed, or injected.  The effects on a person’s brain are still being studied, however, some of the most common effects include anxiety, depression, and lowered inhibition.

A cathinone known as 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) has effects similar to cocaine but is ten times more potent.

Other effects of cathinone abuse include the following:

  • paranoia
  • hallucinations
  • delirium
  • panic attacks
  • increased sociability

Long-term effects of bath salts include the following:

  • Increased heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Damage to major organs
  • Kidney and liver failure
  • Breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue
  • Swelling of the brain
  • Death

Obviously, cathinones are highly addictive.  Unfortunately, there are no medications available to help with withdrawals.  Ultimately, professional treatment is required to achieve lasting recovery.  Furthermore, intense withdrawal symptoms occur when cathinones are withheld.  For example:

  • problems sleeping
  • paranoia
  • anxiety
  • depression

The best option for withdrawing from bath salts is to enter an inpatient detox and rehab facility.  Specifically, addicts are monitored 24/7 by addiction specialists and medical staff to ensure a safe and efficient process.  With this intention, during detox, the staff and counselors are on-hand to offer encouragement and support throughout the detox period.

What to Expect in Rehab

As soon as detox is completed, the recovering addict enters a rehabilitation program to learn how to maintain sobriety.  With this in mind, inpatient rehab is recommended for the best results.

Overall, an inpatient rehab program is designed to instill a sense of personal responsibility and help addicts understand the underlying reasons for their addiction.  In this way, they can recognize triggers and apply more effective methods for coping with stress without getting high.

For instance, a comprehensive treatment program consists of some or all of the following options:

  • Group and individual counseling
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Life Skills training
  • Parenting classes
  • GED preparation
  • Nutritional guidance
  • Exercise and fitness classes
  • Role-playing activities
  • Communication Skills training
  • Music and art therapy
  • Martial arts, yoga, massage therapy, acupuncture, sauna
  • Faith-based programs if desired
  • Aftercare services

It is important to note that these programs are geared toward healing the whole person, mentally, physically, and spiritually.  Additionally, an aftercare program is crucial to recovering addicts as they attempt to transition back into society.  In fact, aftercare services specialize in such things as counseling and assistance in locating employment, living arrangements, transportation, government support programs, and much more.

In conclusion, if you have been, or are considering using bath salts, please learn more about this dangerous substance before putting your life in danger.  Our representatives are available 24/7 to talk to you and help you understand exactly what to expect.  Likewise, they are qualified to recommend a program best suited for your needs.

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