Saturday, January 22, 2011

Spice- Just as Dangerous as Street Drugs

There’s a drug popular with teens in the U.S. that many parents may never have heard of, but worst of all – it is legal. This drug, called “Spice” or “K2” is said to give the addict a marijuana-like high. Sold in headshops and online as incense, it is being smoked as a legal alternative to marijuana. But this drug appears to have more dangerous side-effects and without the necessary regulation, users have no idea what they’re really getting.

Spice originally appeared on the scene in the late 1990s, but didn’t really become popular until 2008. As the new drug gained popularity in Europe, scientists began conducting research into the composition of this drug and any effects on the body. As a result of these investigations, many countries subsequently banned Spice including Germany, France, Chile, Poland, Russia, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Austria, and the U.K.

German researchers were able to determine that Spice contained a variety of synthetic cannabinoids, which are chemical compounds devised to produce marijuana-like effects. There was a high quantity of other synthetic chemicals found as well, indicating that a user really has no way of knowing what they are being exposed to. Worse yet, Spice appears to have many negative side effects that marijuana does not such as anxiety attacks, hallucinations, nausea, and a chemical dependency. Three teenagers in Roswell, GA were recently hospitalized after using Spice. One teen had a severe reaction to the drug, resulting in swelling of the brain.

Currently there is no way to test for the use of Spice, as it is not a regulated drug. Theoretically, children under the age of 18 cannot buy the drug, as head shops and online stores are not supposed to sell to minors. Many people may be led to believe that it is a safe alternative to marijuana. It is not. This could not be further from the truth. Parents, teachers, and lawmakers need to be made aware that this drug is out there and that it has the potential to harm the lives of our children.

Spice use and abuse in our teens has already become a problem. Clearbrook Treatment Centers, a spice drug treatment center or rehab in Pennsylvania can help your teen with his/her addiction. Please call us or visit

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