Monday December 22nd 2014

Synthetic cannabis and synthetic marijuana dangers

Synthetic cannabis and synthetic marijuana dangers

Synthetic cannabis and synthetic marijuana are just as dangerous as illicit drugs. Not only can you develop physical or psychological Spice dependence, but you can also experience hallucinogenic effects.  Here, we explore the dangers of synthetic marijuana and how to help Spice addiction.  Plus, more on how the drug is produced, what its effects are and why it has become so popular. Then, we invite your questions about the dangers of synthetic cannabis at the end.

Synthetic cannabis: what are you smoking?

Synthetic drugs have been in the news lately and, unfortunately, on many store shelves.  Because they are not seen by many as being “real” drugs, sometimes it is assumed that synthetic cannabis products are safer than other drugs but this is wrong. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), chemical analysis has proven that there are hidden chemicals in these synthetic drugs that are not printed on the ingredients label, meaning people don’t really know what they are smoking or ingesting with these drugs.

The synthetic marijuana brand also known as “Spice” is created by manufacturing synthetic cannabinoids that mimic the effects of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the substance in marijuana that produces the desired high. When the synthetic cannabinoids are sprayed on dried herbs, it creates something akin to naturally occurring marijuana. But it can be specifically created to produce a high 15 times more powerful than natural pot.

Effects of synthetic cannabis

The high of synthetic marijuana is similar to that of regular marijuana, including elevated mood, relaxation, altered perception and in some cases extreme anxiety, paranoia and hallucinations. The cannabinoid compounds in synthetic marijuana act much the same as regular marijuana, binding to cell receptors in the body but some of the compounds found in synthetic marijuana have been found to bind much more strongly.

Dangers of synthetic cannabis

More frightening, though, is that because the major known compounds in synthetic marijuana are being banned in many areas, producers are trying new chemicals that aren’t technically banned yet and these unknown compounds could cause drastically different effects on the body.

Smokers of synthetic marijuana have been taken to Poison Control Centers to be dealt with and have reported symptoms including: rapid heart rate, vomiting, agitation, confusion and hallucinations. It can also lead to raised blood pressure, reduced blood supply to the heart and has, in a few cases, been associated with heart attacks.

The demand for synthetic marijuana is increasing

NIDA has found that synthetic marijuana is second only to actual marijuana in popularity among high school students and this is so due to the erroneous assumption that it is safer than other drugs and the false belief that the psychoactive effects are produced naturally and therefore are deemed to be harmless. It has also gained popularity because it is difficult to pick up in standard drug tests.

What do you think?

Please send us your questions, comments or responses about the growing epidemic aurrounding use of synthetic cannabis. We try to respond to all questions personally and promptly.

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9 Responses to “Synthetic cannabis and synthetic marijuana dangers
Bobby
6:26 pm May 7th, 2013

Great job with this article. We really need to get the word out to people who are thinking about using synthetic marijuana. It’s a horrible drug and needs to be banned asap.

jarred
7:33 am July 25th, 2013

I’ve used synthetic marijuana for 2 years and its the most evil substance I’ve put into my body..I’ve smoked crack for 6months years back and the addiction to spice is far worse than that..not to mention all the physical and mental damage it does..I’m currently experiencing strange “squirming” sensations in the brain as well intense sharp pains to the heart, I’m also experiencing random body movements/jerks t random times..I’m in “group” at a center called solutions to assist with the addiction..I’ve been sober for about a month or a lil longer and I’ve never been more scared..its in my dreams every night and the symptoms I’ve described are getting worse…please never ingest this drug..if you know anyone using it please get them help or else they will die or end up in a mental hospital..

scott
3:50 am September 14th, 2013

This wouldnt be a problem if real marijuana was legal.

mark thomsen
3:21 am October 24th, 2013

This is dangerous stuff. How this stuff is legal I hav no idea, its a serious drug which needs to be taken off the market. Its lethal. Ive tried it, took 1 puff and it blew my socks off. I though I was loosing the plot. The only good thing about it is that it wears off quickly

Mary
1:12 pm December 18th, 2013

Thank you Jarred. I will pray for you. My 25 yr old is in detox for spice, k2. Mr. Happy,etc addiction. I hate how it has changed him into a raging monster. I am truly scared to death. This stuff is awful . It is so addicting. I want to get the word out. This is the LSD of the young generation. I have seen the effects. Severe coughing. Chronic nausea and vomiting. Sleeplessness. Inability to eat, abdominal pain. Agitation. Severe anxiety. Stealing, lying, hiding, job losses, rages, all those addiction behaviors. They sell this at the gas stations.

Mari
1:36 am November 13th, 2014

Mary I read your comment , it is a description of my son. I pray to God to help with this situation, he will not go to rehab.

Mary
12:50 am November 19th, 2014

I am posting again to report my 26 yr old son is now sober and free of spice. This is the boy I forgot and he is himself again. He is happy to be off the stuff. The detox of it put him in an ICU for 4 days where he raged uncontrollably. The first months home were edgy and now a year later he is living on his own with a nice girl, and working. Clean.

6:42 pm November 19th, 2014

Hello Mary. Thank you for sharing; I hope that this provides other parents or loved ones of Spice users with a ray of hope.

Mary
1:12 am November 21st, 2014

Mari,
I must tell you, that I told my son to go to rehab or leave my home and I would not give him money, change my locks, and take his car. I meant it. It scared him and he went in, but daily begged me to bring him home while in rehab. I put him in a rehab 3 hours away, and stopped taking the calls, and set hard limits. It worked for him. I pray for you and your son.

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About Lena Butler

Lena Butler is a mom, health blogger and customer service representative for TestCountry. TestCountry is a San Diego based point of service diagnostic test service provider that offers a wide range of laboratory and instant testing kit solutions including drug tests, metal toxicity, DNA paternity, food and water tests and hundreds more. TestCountry's tests are easy to use and can be performed at your home or workplace.