Bath Salts Addiction And The Best Rehab Centers For Treatment
It seems that as time goes on that there are more and more dangerous substances being created and abused, so called designer drugs. It is worrisome that in the past five years the a drug known as bath salts has increased in popularity among drug users, from two known cases in 2009 to 2371 in 2011. Created as a new synthetic stimulant, bath salts are named for the substance it resembles. An amphetamine, MDPV, is the main drug that transforms its users into a zombie-like state. It is also called Dynamite, Lady Bubbles, White China, Vanilla Sky, Cloud 9, and Ivory Wave.
This drug is extremely disturbing, not only because of the addict “attacks” that it known for in the media, but because it is potentially ten times more addicting that crystal meth. It comes in a yellow or white powder that is then ingested, smoked, snorted, or injected. It only takes about fifteen minutes for the high to hit and lasts from four to six hours. Currently, there is no federal ban on the substance (there is in some states though), although there is on the three main ingredients of the drug.
Short Term Effects
Even though the scary side effects have been highlighted, drug users take bath salts because of the high levels of dopamine that floods their brain, causing extreme euphoria, hyper-awareness, and feelings of super strength. Unfortunately, due to its extreme addictiveness, first time users typically become addicts.
Because of this, one trip on bath salts leads to anxiety, paranoia, hallucinations, rapid heart rate and high blood pressure, and loss of motor control. Such hallucinations are so vivid and extreme that the addict completely loses touch with reality. Many times, the drug causes hyperthermia, causing the delusional addict to strip down and run around naked.
Long Term Effects
While that may seem funny, this drug is no laughing matter. Because of the potency of this drug, typical “long-term” damage is seen after only a few uses. This includes neurological damage, cardiovascular damage, and mental health problems. Other problems that have been reported are kidney failure, extreme dehydration, and breakdown of skeletal muscle. Withdrawal is particularly intense, causing major depressive symptoms, and many coming down off the high have attempted or committed suicide.
And the damage isn’t limited to the user themselves. Many addicts show signs of violent behavior and aggression, and there have been reports in the news of those who have been strung out on bath salts attacking people or causing damage to personal property.
Treatment for Bath Salts Addiction
Because this designer drug is relatively new to the sphere of addiction treatment, many rehabs are offering a mixture of traditional amphetamine treatment paired with new treatment specifically targeted towards the extreme addictiveness and neurological damage bath salts cause.
Because of the high relapse probability, most rehabilitation centers will strongly urge inpatient services to their patients. This allows them to monitor patients 24/7 and give them all the attention and care they need. The start of the impatient process for bath salt addicts is detoxification. Because of the excessive addictive properties, getting all the remnants of the drug out of the addict’s system is essential for a successful recovery. Medications are also prescribed at this time to help with the physical withdrawal, but due to the severe symptoms, it is still a very unpleasant and painful process.
Typically, inpatient programs are 30 to 90 days in length. Due to the severity of this drug, many bath salt treatment centers hold up to 6 month programs for full recovery. Because of the toll bath salts takes on your brain and its functioning, therapy plays a big roll in recovery. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is widely used to help the patient to fight off mental and emotional cravings. Paired with dual diagnosis treatment for possible mental disorders associated with bath salt use and benzodiazepines, addicts are covered on all the bases of recovery.
Finally, once recovering addicts have completed their inpatient stay, it is often recommended that they reside in a sober-living community, where they are surrounded by others who are on the same road to recovery and monitored by a house counselor. If this is not an option for the addict, then participating in outside recovery groups is another great option.
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