Signs and Symptoms of Bath Salts Abuse
"Bath salts" is one of the newest drugs to hit the streets. These drugs have nothing to do with bathing. The only reason they are called bath salts is that they are usually packaged as a product "for a soothing bath, not for human consumption." Before the drugs making up bath salts were illegal, this kept sellers from having the drugs confiscated. Sellers were usually convenience stores, head shops and similar businesses.
These drugs have now been made illegal in the US so their sale will simply be carried out in more concealed fashions.
Bath salts may be ingested, snorted or injected. You may find small foil packages left behind after bath salts consumption.
They may be labeled:
- Blue silk
- Ivory Wave
- Purple Wave
- Red Dove
- White Lightning
- Cloud Nine
- Or many other names
There's a variety of chemicals making up bath salts. These include mephedrone (a popular and problematic drug in the UK), pyrovalerone and methylenedioxyprovalerone (MPDV). The most serious results come from snorting or injecting. While these are three of the most common chemicals sold as bath salts, there are dozens of others that may be used. This makes treatment in the case of overdose or adverse affect very difficult.
They act as strong stimulants and may be sought by a person who normally uses cocaine or methamphetamine. They are strongly addictive and trigger intense cravings. Therefore even a person who sees that they are experiencing harm from abuse of these drugs may not be able to stop himself.
Symptoms of Bath Salts Abuse
There have been serious and even fatal results from using bath salts. In some cases, a person has died directly from abuse of the drug and in others, he (or she) died as a result of his actions.
These signs of bath salts use include:
- Increased blood pressure
- Chest pains
- Increased heart rate
- Kidney pain
- Increased body temperature or chills
- Muscle tension
- Reduced need for food or sleep
- Suicidal ideas
A person using bath salts may overheat and therefore tear his clothes off. His paranoia may drive him to aggressive, uncontrolled attacks on others, or self-destruction. He will probably not respond to any commands to stop his actions, and pepper spray or tasers may have no effect.
In many cases in the US and the UK, the signs of bath salts abuse included acts of violence that ended in the death of multiple people or suicide attempts.
A 35-year-old UK woman who thought it could help her lose weight - and who had no knowledge of its dangers - took the drug over a period of months. She lost weight but also turned into a "paranoid, aggressive agoraphobic, insomniac," according to her family. She finally went into a coma, suffered irreversible brain damage and was then taken off life support.
Arizona law enforcement personnel reported that a man high on bath salts tried to break into an operating room armed with a fire extinguisher. He sprayed the hospital security staff who tried to stop him. Another Arizona man high on bath salts walked down a sidewalk throwing himself at walls. He then stripped naked and ran through the neighborhood.
And in one of the most tragic incidents involving bath salts, a young mother and father died after a high-speed chase in Washington. After they crashed, the father shot his wife and then himself and their young child was later found dead in the home.
The paranoia and delusions associated with this type of drug can trigger a wide range of violent or suicidal behaviors since the drug user is completely disassociated from reality.
Dealing with these Signs
If a family sees any of these signs of bath salts use, it is vital to get the person professional help as soon as possible. The drug user and those around him are at risk as long as that drug is being abused. If the drug user can't stop using this drug by himself, then he must be gotten into an addiction treatment program at the first possible moment.
This is not a drug to take any kind of chances with. Serious physical damage is also possible, as in the case of the New Orleans woman who lost her arm, shoulder, breast and other tissue after an injection of bath salts into her forearm set up a chain reaction of tissue death.
Around the world, Narconon drug rehabilitation centers have been helping people avoid these dangers by enabling them to leave drug abuse far behind. In more than fifty locations, Narconon enables people to achieve productive, enjoyable lives. Find out how Narconon can help someone you love escape the dangers of drug abuse. Call 1-800-775-8750.
Also see Effects of Bath Salts