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The Dangers and Effects of Spice Use

The Effects of Spice Use – Discover the Dangers and What to Do Once Addicted

Spice or K2 is often touted as a safe, natural alternative to marijuana, but this couldn’t be further from the truth; the American poison control center received 2,695 calls due to spice poisoning in 2016. As many as 28,531 people went to the emergency room due to the harmful side effect of K2 or spice, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Why is the drug so dangerous when it’s marketed as natural and safe? In this article, we will explore what the substance is, the dangerous effects of spice use in the short- and long-term, and explore the options a person has after becoming addicted to the drug. 

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What is K2/Spice?

Spice/K2 and other similar products is a synthetic marijuana mixture. Until recently, laws allowed for the sale of the substance in gas stations and other shops because it was considered to be a legal, safe alternative to marijuana. While it is mostly shredded plant material, it is sprayed with various chemicals which ultimately cause the effects of spice use. It is infinitely more dangerous that marijuana, especially as manufacturers continue to add dangerous chemicals to their mixes.

According to reports by the state health department, chemicals can include rat poison and other dangerous chemicals, which has caused several overdose deaths. The effects of spice use vary because as laws started to prohibit the sale of the substance, manufacturers would alter their formulation in a cat-and-mouse game. There is simply no way of telling exactly what is in each batch, and what the side effects of K2 or spice is. Some reports by the DEA say that even fentanyl has been used to lace spice – fentanyl is the most powerful opioid and behind the largest amount of reported overdose deaths recently.

Short-Term K2 Side Effects

The list of the side effects of K2 is long. To start things off, we’ll explore what the short-term effects of spice use are. The main reason why people abuse the substance is due to availability and the manufacturer’s promises that is it a natural alternative to marijuana. As such, users expect to feel:

However, this isn’t all that a person feels in the short term after abusing spice of K2. The dangerous short-term K2 side effects are as follows:

As one can see through the short-term effects of spice use, it is far more dangerous than marijuana; it can even be fatal.

Synthetic Marijuana Long-Term Effects

Synthetic marijuana is a new drug that has only been around for a few years. As such, there is still not enough data and research to determine exactly what the synthetic marijuana long-term effects are; however, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t any. With any drug that has such severe side effects in the short term, and the possibility of death, there is undoubtedly severe long-term effects of abuse.

Thus far, the biggest concern is the effects of spice use on the heart. Through long-term exposure, conditions such as myocardial ischemia are a major concern as it can lead to a heart attack. Renal damage has also been reported.

Moreover, with the ever-changing recipes, there could be more dangerous side effects that we have yet to discover, and the long-term implications can be immense.

Is Spice Dependence Forming?

Marijuana is not known to be a highly addictive substance such as opioids or cocaine; however, synthetic marijuana is nothing like marijuana. Therefore, just because marijuana isn’t highly addictive, it doesn’t mean that spice or K2 isn’t.

Synthetic marijuana is an addictive substance and a dependence to the drug is highly likely with repeated abuse.

People who have abused the drug over an extended period of time have reported:

Of course, along with a dependence comes addictive behavior. An addiction is categorized by some of the following:

An addiction is a progressive disease if help isn’t found. Every month that the addiction carries on for, the more dangers the person opens themselves up to, and the more their life starts to fall apart. Thankfully, treatment for substance use disorder is available – and it’s highly effective!

Treating an Addiction to Synthetic Marijuana

Even though the drug is fairly new, treatment for an addiction and dependence remains much the same as other addictive drugs. Through treatment, one can expect a dramatic reduction in the drug abuse, criminal behavior, social and vocational problems.

Treatment for a K2 or spice addiction usually follows the below sequence:

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, get help right away. Make a phone call that will connect you to a professional drug treatment center. The call you make may save your life or the life of someone you love. Call us today at (800) 429-7690.

Sources:

https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/trends-statistics/infographics/synthetic-cannabinoids-k2spice-unpredictable-danger https://www.npr.org/2018/07/27/632261920/d-c-has-had-more-than-300-suspected-k2-overdoses-in-2-weeks https://dsm.psychiatryonline.org/doi/book/10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596