Studies Show That Bath Salts Are As Addictive As Cocaine

bath salts

A recreation drug called bath salts which is a synthetic methamphetamine has been gaining popularity over the past couple of years. Up until very recently it was legal and sold in convenience stores. New reports indicate that they have very similar addictive effects as cocaine.

Bath salts are composed of different variations of a compound called cathinone, which comes from the khat plant. Presently cathinone is banned in 42 states. Mephedrone is one of the common derivatives of cathinone. In October of 2011, the substance was federally listed as a schedule one controlled substance for one year, pending further study. On July 9th, 2012 President Obama signed a law that made bath salts containing mephedrone or the stimulant MDPV a controlled substance.

Study Indicates Similarities

Studies were conducted on mice using a technique developed in the 1950s called intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS). This study measures a drug’s ability to activate reward circuits. Animals are trained to perform a task such as pressing a lever or button or spinning a wheel in order to receive a reward.

The mice were implanted with brain stimulating electrodes. With these electrodes, measures of their wheel spinning effort were made before, during and after they were administered various doses of either mephedrone or cocaine.

Results of the study showed that both drugs increased the ability of the mice to be rewarded by self-stimulation. Doctors stated that the effects of mephedrone and cocaine were very similar.

The Basic Dangers Of Bath Salts

Bath Salts were only made illegal in recent months. However, there is a laundry list of frightening side effects that have been reported. Officials report that the drug can cause hallucinations, delusions, thoughts of suicide, violent behavior, paranoia, reduced motor control and physical ailments, seizures, nausea, vomiting and even death.

Another horrifying detail about these drugs is that they are thought to be the cause of a wave of attacks being labeled, “zombie attacks”. The most notable was the infamous attack in south Florida this summer where a naked man on the drugs was shot to death by police officers after violently attacking and eating most of a homeless man’s face.

The fact that is undeniable is that these are dangerous drugs that should not be taken even once. They are proven to be extremely addictive and can send people into violent delusions.

Drug Abuse Warning Signs And Help

Besides the obvious symptoms of this drugs use when a person is on it, here are some things to look out for if you suspect a friend or family member to be using drugs:

• Mood swings and odd behavior
• Anxious, negative, destructive, argumentative behavior
• Acting shut off and secretive
• Suddenly seems to be less happy than they used to be
• Overly exhausted or conversely, hyperactive
• Has drastic weight fluctuation
• Cheats, steals
• Always needs money
• Is sloppiness in appearance and bad personal hygiene

The Narconon drug rehab program suggests that if you are suffering from drug problems or suspects a loved one of drug addiction, contact us. We are here to help and have professionals who can set you on the path to recovery through long-term, drug-free treatment that can help you overcome addiction for good.

It is never a wise decision to let a bath salt addiction go unhandled. Violent and unpredictable behavior can occur with any use of the drug and individuals need to be aware of the symptoms above and take actions if they see a loved one or friend using this drug



Sue Birkenshaw

Sue has worked in the addiction field with the Narconon network for three decades. She has developed and administered drug prevention programs worldwide and worked with numerous drug rehabilitation centers over the years. Sue is also a fine artist and painter, who enjoys traveling the world which continues to provide unlimited inspiration for her work. You can follow Sue on Twitter, or connect with her on LinkedIn.