Is there an alternative to marijuana? In short, the answer to this is “no.” Still, that hasn’t stop shady groups from marketing dangerous substances as “alternatives.” Marketed under names like Black Mamba and Yucatan Fire, synthetic cannabinoids (specifically spice and K2) are sold as “fake weed,” but actually contain a relatively small amount of the plant, if any whatsoever. In fact, spice and K2 are far more dangerous than marijuana and contain potentially hazardous chemicals that are far more toxic than a few cannabinoids. Ultimately, these tricky chameleons are 100% illegal and 110% addictive and can even induce death, if overused. Let’s take a closer look at how you can identify addiction to spice and K2, the fake variants of marijuana.
So, what makes synthetic cannabinoids particularly dangerous? Simply put, K2 and spice are marketed as a form of incense, potpourri, or “fake weed,” but there is no trace of marijuana in these products whatsoever. Producers purposefully infuse plants with dangerous cannabinoid compounds that imitate the “high” produced by marijuana. What is especially frightening is the fact that these drugs cannot be detected in a simple weed screening.
Too Bad You’re Popular
Based on a 2011 survey focusing on a test group of 14,966 individuals, researchers confirmed that 17% of individuals had used K2. Within this sub-group, 42% of people used this drug in the past year. What makes this case especially interesting though, is the fact that 93% of these users actually preferred natural marijuana, not the fake cannabinoids.
However, the fact of the matter is that spice and K2 are incredibly dangerous and have led to spikes in poison control and emergency room visits. In 2010 alone, poison control centers received about 2,500 calls about K2 use, a stark contrast to a bleak 53 calls in the previous year (2009).
Identifying Spice or K2 Use
Ultimately, medical professionals are concerned with the wide variety of symptoms people exhibit when they consume spice and K2. Also, due to the presence of additional chemicals and poor regulation of these drugs, the symptoms are difficult to pinpoint. For now, let’s take a closer look at the most common reported symptoms of spice and K2 use:
- Physical: Tachycardia (fast heartbeat), lack of motor control, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, tinnitus (severe ringing in the ears), and feeling faint
- Behavioral: severe disorientation, paranoia, aggression, severe psychosis, hallucinations, severe anxiety
Seeking Treatment for Synthetic Cannabinoid Use
Always remember that drugs do not have control over your life. You do. Are you suffering from a substance use disorder or a severe form of addiction? Do you have a friend or family member suffering from one or more of these debilitating illnesses? If you do, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our counselors and healthcare experts are ready to walk you through every step of the detox and withdrawal process and rehabilitation and guide you towards living a happier, healthier, and freer lifestyle. While the road to recovery might not be an easy road to travel, we promise to help you every step of the way. Take the first step to stay fit, healthy, and safe.
The time for you to take back control of your life is now. If you are interested in one of our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how to overcome your drug abuse or addiction troubles today.