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K2 Addiction And The Best Rehab Centers For Treatment

Brenda Munnerlyn, RN, BSN

Medically reviewed by

Brenda Munnerlyn, RN, BSN

February 15, 2019

K2 is a drug made of plant components that are laced with psychoactive chemicals. Many individuals believe that K2 is safer than marijuana, but this drug is more potent and can lead to longer lasting highs. Individuals unaware of this may take too high of a dose and end up with serious health repercussions.

In 2006, a synthetic version of marijuana called K2 emerged onto the drug scene and has since then gained popularity. Also known as Spice, this drug is mostly abused by teens who are attracted to it because of its marijuana-like effects, inexpensive prices, and the fact that it’s legal to buy most places in the United States. Made up of spices, herbs, and other plant material, it is typically sold as potpourri or incense without legal repercussions. Easily bought at smoke shops, gas stations, and online, it isn’t difficult for teens to get a hold of K2. It’s typically smoked or made into a herb tea, and ingested.

Many choose to smoke K2 because they have been led to believe with its improper labeling that it is safer than other drugs and a natural substance. While it is indeed made up of plant components, this drug is laced with psychoactive chemicals, many of which have a potency that is higher than THC. This means you can smoke less for the same high, which is dangerous if the user attempts to smoke as much as they would for marijuana. The high sets in after five minutes and can continue for up to eight hours.

Short-Term Effects

While K2 targets the same receptors as marijuana, it can have very different effects. People have reported feelings of elevated mood, relaxation, confusion, and loss of motor control, similar to the effects of marijuana, but they have also reported the following symptoms:

  • increased heart rate
  • increased blood pressure
  • vomiting
  • seizures
  • catatonia
  • acute anxiety

Many hospital emergency rooms find those who have over-dosed to be incoherent and often reduced to an infant-like state, complete with drooling, poor coordination, and mumbling.

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Long-Term Effects

Because K2 is a relatively new drug, there isn’t much available information on what its long term effects are. Some teenagers who have been steady users have been admitted with major cardiovascular problems, temporary paralysis, and have fallen into comas. Severe hallucinations and delusions are also prevalent. Finally, due to the fact that there are no standard chemicals per batch, one cannot be sure what they are putting into their bodies, and researchers believe that heavy metal poisoning may be another common problem in the future.

K2 Addiction Treatment

Because the manufactures of K2 claim that their product isn’t meant for consumption, it is difficult for the DEA to ban the substance. They have also attempted to make the individual chemicals used in production illegal, but the manufacturers continue to change the compounds of the drug. Some states have taken action and have declared the substance illegal, but the federal government is still divided. Thus, while the debate rages, there are a handful of addiction treatment centers that have sprung up in response to the new abuse of this drug.

There is debate over K2’s addictive qualities. Many argue that it is a non-addictive substance. However, many users report very unpleasant symptoms associated with the high and claim they will not take it again, and yet they continue to do so, a classic sign of addiction. In studies, it has been shown to cause intense cravings, and over time, it takes more and more of the substance to get the same high.

Because this drug targets teenager, most K2 treatment takes place in teen rehabilitation centers. Here, adolescents are able to recover under age specific plans that cater to their needs. Due to its similarity to marijuana, much of the same treatment is used for K2, including cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Withdrawal can be a difficult process for those who are steady abusers. From severe headaches, to nausea, to nightmares, the symptoms are extremely unpleasant and can make it hard for people to face recovery on their own. That’s why many doctors will suggest inpatient rehabilitation treatment. This allows them to monitor the patient and make them as comfortable and supported as possible during the withdrawal process.

Find The Best K2 Rehab Center

If you or a loved one is struggling with K2 addiction, contact us today. We can help you find the best treatment plan for your needs and at a cost that fits your budget. The path to clean living is close by; take the first step here!

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