Bath salts: Dangerous Drugs in Disguise
“Ivory Wave,” “Purple Wave,” “Vanilla Sky,” and “Bliss” — all are among the many street names of a so-called designer drug known as “bath salts,” which has sparked thousands of calls to poison centers across the United States. The bath salts are said to be as powerful as abusing methamphetamine or cocaine.
According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, the number of calls related to bath salt exposure received by poison control centers across the country increased by more than 20 times in 2011 alone, up from 304 in 2010 to 6,138.
Communities and the public at large need to be made aware of the potential dangers associated with the use of these drugs. Drug abuse and overdose continue to grow as a public health concern. Parents need to talk to their youth about the dangers and health risk of these synthetic stimulants. Research shows that young people are less likely to use drugs when caring adults talk to them about the dangers and health risks.
Are bath salts illegal in Virginia?
You can find them in mini-marts and smoke shops sold as Ivory Wave, Bolivian Bath, and other names. The people who make these products have skirted the laws that make these types of things illegal. Legislation strengthening the criminalization of synthetic designer drugs passed the General Assembly on April 18, 2012 and will be signed into law July 1, 2012.
The effects of bath salts can be severe!
Very severe paranoia can sometimes cause users to harm themselves or others. Effects reported to Poison Control Centers include:
- Suicidal thoughts
- Combative/Violent behavior
- Increased heart rate
- Chest Pain
- Death or serious injury
The speed of onset is 15 minutes, while the length of the high from these drugs is four to six hours. However, the effects can last for weeks. Bath salts are extremely addictive. Not only can you easily get addicted after using small amounts, but bath salts containing amphetamine-like chemicals can cause lasting brain damage and serious physical side effects.
– Submitted by Kathy Graham Sullivan, RAYSAC Director