What are Designer Drugs?

Pills

Parents and loved ones have had enough to worry about with cocaine, heroin and marijuana, but that hasn’t stopped other drugs from emerging. Designer drugs, or club drugs, are some of the most powerful drugs out there. Sadly, they can be some of the easiest to obtain. These drugs are produced in illegal laboratories using both legal and illegal ingredients.

What Makes Designer Drugs So Dangerous?

Designer drugs are intentionally designed to mimic the effects of other drugs, yet they are tweaked to be stronger, longer lasting and more addictive. Unfortunately, because no one knows exactly what is in the drugs, they are extremely dangerous. Using a club drug like MDMA one time can cause instant death.

Below are reasons why club drugs are a major concern for parents and loved ones.

  • Unregulated. Though we’re not suggesting that regulated drugs are “better”, unregulated ones are a whole new ballgame. Synthetic drugs are made in illegal laboratories and underground basements. There is no list of ingredients. Nobody to trace the drugs back to.

  • Lack of understanding. Many club drugs are new to the market. They also contain ingredients that have not been studied. Therefore, we do not know the effects of the drugs on the human body, nor how they interact with other medications and drugs.

  • Unpredictable. Because club drugs can contain anything and everything, the effects are unpredictable. It’s not uncommon for users to experience extreme anxiety, acute psychotic effects, irregular heartbeats and seizures.

Popular Types of Synthetic Drugs

There are always new synthetic drugs popping up with different names and formulas, making it difficult for law enforcement to keep up. However, some drugs are more commonly known than others, including:

  • Ecstasy

  • Spice

  • Bath salts

  • NBOMes

  • Ketamine

  • GHB

  • LSD

Side Effects of Club Drugs

Even though it’s difficult to know what is contained in a particular club drug, the harmful effects are similar across drugs. This happens because the ingredients often overlap. For example, ecstasy tablets are often made with ephedrine (an allergy drug), ketamine (an anesthetic) and methamphetamine (an illegal drug).

Here are some of the most common side effects of using designer drugs.

  • Feelings of panic

  • Hallucinations

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Uncontrolled shaking

  • Increased heart rate

  • Increased blood pressure

  • Paranoia

  • Sweating

  • Fainting

  • Dehydration

  • Nausea

  • Vision changes

If you or someone you care about is abusing synthetic drugs, call The River Source. Our programs are highly successful at dealing with addictions to synthetic drugs as well as understanding the root of the problem. With both outpatient and inpatient services, we’re confident that you will find a program that fits your needs – and your budget.