Finding Treatment for K2-Spice Addiction
“I smoked a medium sized joint of Spice and felt disappointed at first because I didn’t feel anything. Then, after about 15 minutes, my heart started racing so fast; I thought I was having a heart attack. I was scared that it wouldn’t stop and I started freaking out. I had to turn off my tv and lay on my bed sipping water to calm my heart.
“I have no idea how much time passed but after awhile, I was able to sit up, so I changed into my pajamas to go to sleep when I saw worms crawling through my veins. I couldn’t get them off of me!
“I panicked and got a knife to cut them out but luckily my sister and her boyfriend were there and they talked me through it. I woke up the next day feeling like I was run over by a truck. I will never touch that stuff again.” –Dana, 19 years old
Dana may be one of the lucky ones. She didn’t hurt herself or anyone she knew.
Spice is used to attain a relaxing feeling of joy and wellbeing. The variety of recipes used to distribute this drug makes the experiences between batches inconsistent. Worse, it makes proper dosing impossible, which creates a risk of overdose. Still, abusers continue their self-destructive behavior. The addicted brain always has its priority set on getting more.
Substance abuse treatment helps to realign the brain’s chemical imbalances created by addiction. A safe detox and comprehensive treatment strategy specifically tailored for the individual is the key to a life of successful recovery.
K2 Spice FAQ’s
What is Spice?
Spice, sometimes called “K2,” is designed to imitate Marijuana. It is a mixture of Spices and herbs which have been treated with a chemical compound similar to THC. These chemical compounds generally include, JWH-018, HU-210, JWH-073, and HU-211.
What is Spice’s origin?
Spice is often sold over the Internet, but it can also be purchased in tobacco shops, head shops, convenience stores, other retail outlets. Since manufacturers generally sell Spice on the internet, it’s difficult to tell where they are based, although several websites are based in China.
What are Spice’s common street names?
Some common street names include Bombay Blue, K2, Genie, Zohai, Bliss, Fake Weed, and Black Mamba.
How is Spice abused?
Spice is most often smoked in pipes or joints, but it can also be made into a tea.
What are Spice’s effects on the mind?
Spice can cause various psychological effects, including giddiness, paranoia, and panic attacks.
What are Spice’s effects on the body?
Spice can cause various physiological effects, including increased heart rate and blood pressure, although the long-term effects are not well known.
What are Spice’s overdose effects?
There have been cases involving Spice that have resulted in seizures, coma’s and even death.
Which drugs cause similar effects as Spice?
Spice shares some similar characteristics with marijuana.
What are the withdrawal effects of Spice?
When the user stops taking Spice, he/she could experience withdrawal symptoms such as heavy sweating, intense cravings, loss of motivation, suicidal thoughts, loss of appetite, inability to sleep, depression, psychotic episodes, and not caring about consequences.
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What is K2 Spice?
Synthetic marijuana, also referred to as K2, Spice, and many more, is a toxic cocktail of chemicals combined to mimic the effects of marijuana. However, the effects of Spice are much more potent for a much lower price.
Manufacturers deliver Spice in a powdered form to distributors who then mix it with a varied combination of ingredients, such as ammonia, hydrochloric acid, acetone and alcohol. It’s then sprayed on foliage, processed, and packaged as incense, potpourri, or a liquid for vaping.
It’s generally brewed in tea, mixed with marijuana or smoked by itself. A tolerance builds up slowly and has high potential for addiction, despite its legal status. Because there is no regulation of the drug, batches are not consistent and it is impossible to determine how much of the synthetic material or added chemicals is in each package.
Drug & Alcohol Interventions for K2-Spice
Knowing the dangers of Spice and knowing that someone you care about is struggling with an addiction not only weighs on the heart, but also can be deeply frightening.
Grandparents may be caring for their grandchildren or children may be caring for siblings to fill in the hole left by the addicted person. The individual’s job may be suffering or there may be tension with friends. An intervention is a good option for an addicted person who is in denial about the severity of their dependence.
Friends and family coming together to express heartfelt love and concern often compels the addicted person to come to terms with the need for treatment.
Family therapy in treatment facilitates the healing of broken relationships and brings loved ones together for a new start. Appropriate family roles can be restored and children can heal from the trauma. A family can recover.
Synthetic Drugs: Teenagers & Spice
Teenagers are notorious for their no-holds-barred attitude about drugs and alcohol. It’s no surprise that they are attracted to Spice; it’s a potent drug with a low price tag. 11 percent of U.S. high school students admitted to using it at least once in 2012.
75% of people who abused the drug were between the ages of 12 and 25. These startling numbers illustrate just how brazen teens are with Spice.
Spice is sold as a potpourri or incense and therefore, theoretically is not intended for human consumption. This marketing strategy benefits the manufacturer because it keeps them from being regulated or outlawed. Since it’s perfectly legal, it’s much easier for teenagers to get.
The price is right, costing a fraction of what they would spend on the same amount of marijuana, and it doesn’t show up in drug tests.
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Common Behaviors Associated With K2-Spice Addiction
When the desired effect is euphoria, one might imagine that someone under the influence of Spice is calm and happy. Unfortunately, these feel-good behaviors are only a small part of the Spice experience.
Spice is also known to bring about psychotic episodes along with hallucinations and paranoia that often leads to aggressive and sometimes violent behavior.
Countless tales of people collapsing onto sidewalks, moving like zombies, and behaving erratically have been told. People have been witnessed flailing about on the floor in the throes of an intense hallucination; others have been on the verge of suicide, desperate to end their psychosis.
As with every synthetic drug, Spice affects every person differently. One person may feel mild desirable effects while another person may experience detrimental effects. It’s impossible to predict how someone will behave under the influence of Spice because there is no consistency in the recipe from batch to batch.
Signs & Symptoms
Spice is known to induce euphoria, calmness, and relaxation; however, the side effects experienced are part of the package and can often be easily spotted in someone using the drug. Here are some signs of possible Spice abuse causes these types of symptoms:
- Fast heartbeat
- Difficulty with Speech
Other severe side effects include psychosis and aggressive behavior, which puts the abuser and the people around him/her at risk for violence and even suicide. Extreme paranoia impairs the judgment of the user, which can increase their tendency for violence.
Becoming dependent on Spice results in a distressing reaction from the mind and body a few hours after the last use. As with other synthetic drugs, these withdrawal symptoms culminate after about 4 or 5 days and can last for several weeks.
While these symptoms are not believed to be life threatening, they can create serious concerns of dehydration and emotional destitution. Common withdrawal symptoms include substantial cravings, restlessness, insomnia, nightmares, nausea, sweating, depression, tremors and an inability to concentrate. Abusers who have been using the drug consistently are most likely to experience these symptoms.
In July of 2014, Connor Eckhardt, a 19-year-old Spice abuser, overdosed on Spice, went into a coma and died.
Emily Bauer, a 17-year-old Spice abuser suffered brain damage and is now in a wheelchair after a Spice overdose.
These accounts of severely adverse effects are just two of many. To say that an overdose on Spice is dangerous would be a gross understatement. Take these signs of overdose seriously:
- Extreme anxiety & agitation
- Rapid heartbeat
- Aggressive Behavior
- Blurred Vision
- Thoughts of Suicide
- Heart attack
Anyone experiencing a K2-Spice overdose requires immediate emergency medical attention.
Effective medical detox experts focus on taking the discomfort out of the detox and withdrawal process. We understand that each patient has different needs. Patients can usually choose to either undergo medical detox or social detox. You deserve an effective and realistic addiction treatment plan. Learn More
Different outpatient programs, such as intensive outpatient and evening intensive outpatient programs, can help patients receive treatment while living at home. Connecting you to a safe and therapeutic program is our top priority. Learn More
Residential facilities are the perfect place to start your journey to recovery. At high-quality residential treatment centers, expert clinicians and medical providers assess your needs and provide an individualized plans tailored to your needs. Learn More
Offering Quality Treatment for K2-Spice Addictions
The statistics on Spice abuse are shocking, but don’t allow them to be discouraging. There is a solution for people physically and psychologically dependent on the drug.
The addicted brain can be healed and its chemical balance can be revived through substance abuse treatment. Spice abuse treatment begins with detox in which the abuser’s vital signs are monitored for safety and medications are used for comfort while the drug leaves your system.
A personal therapist will work with you to determine the underlying cause of the addiction in an effort to fend off relapse after treatment. Many times, a person suffers from depression or anxiety that has not been diagnosed.
Taking the drug gives a false sense of relief from these disorders, which tempts the person to use it again, making it easy to become addicted to Spice. Appropriately addressing these disorders removes the purported need for the drug, decreasing the likelihood of relapse.
Cognitive therapy and other cutting-edge therapies help to develop social skills, build physical and mental health, and enhance coping mechanisms. Treatment supports a long-term successful recovery.
Finally, an aftercare plan is tailored to provide a safety net of solutions during moments of cravings. Remaining a part of the sober community, doing a 12-step program and continuing group therapies are also ways to control the urges to relapse you may experience in early recovery.
All aspects of treatment are designed to provide you with the tools for a life that is joyful, meaningful, and worth living. If you feel the need to abuse substance to cope with your reality, reach out to ABTRS today. We can connect you with the addiction treatment that is right for you.
Reliable Sources Matter to ABTRS Because They Matter to You
Finding reliable information when seeking drug and alcohol treatment can be difficult. Not many people feel comfortable going to a doctor to discuss a K2-Spice addiction without feeling shame or blame for their struggles. That is why it is important for ABTRS to provide information that you can count on, free from shame, and worth your trust.
We want to empower you with the knowledge to make good decisions that will better your life. We take pride in offering reputable sources that are impartial, not funded by organizations that could benefit from certain outcomes, and proven or tested to be effective. Know that the sources below are there to help you by educating you about rehab and all things treatment related.
Baumann, M. H., Solis, E., Watterson, L. R., Marusich, J. A., Fantegrossi, W. E., & Wiley, J. L. (2014). Baths salts, spice, and related designer drugs: the science behind the headlines. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 34(46), 15150-8.
Drugabuse.gov. (2019). Synthetic Cannabinoids (K2/Spice) Unpredictable Danger. [online] Available at: https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/trends-statistics/infographics/synthetic-cannabinoids-k2spice-unpredictable-danger [Accessed 26 Feb. 2019].
NIDA. (2018, February 5). Synthetic Cannabinoids (K2/Spice). Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/synthetic-cannabinoids-k2spice on 2019, February 26