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How Bad Are Bath Salts?

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Bath Salts. In contemporary parlance, the words “Bath Salts” evoke images of radically altered behavior in people, not unlike those aberrant homunculi Will Smith fights in the movie I Am Legend. These new sodium soothers are not your mother’s bath salts. Bath salts are a designer drug, mimicking properties of cocaine, ecstasy and amphetamines (for a loose analogy). This new phenomenon is not only gaining momentum in popularity, but they are also legal: accessible to most people and all ages. The increase in bath salt popularity, prevalence and promotion is worthy for a refresher blog, along with new information as more researchers are taking apart some of these chemicals and revealing how adverse the effects are.

Tragic Ending Reveals Serious Problem

PBS recently released a long but thorough article detailing a very sad story of a bath salt related suicide along with some scientific explanations of the drug’s deleterious consequences. In The Drug That Never Lets Go, a full contextual history of the bath salts saga is very informatively and helpfully expounded and explained. We also learn of the tragic end to BMX’er Dickie Sanders and the tortuous final days inaugurated by a binge on bath salts that he bought from a friend, who probably bought them from a local gas station or a convenient store. After a psychotic episode landed Sanders in the hospital, the hallucinations and other sundry disturbia he experienced was ameliorated via heavy sedatives and psychotropics. The hospital visit was precipitated by Sanders reportedly seeing 25 police cars outside his home then slitting his own throat, though not fatally.

Sanders was eventually released after five days, ostensively in his right mind and reassuring his parents that he would never do the drug again. Sadly, the hallucinations and paranoia rose again the first night home and Sanders took his own life in the throes of a drug a child can buy along with a soda and candy bar. We have a responsibility, an obligation even, to learn from Sander’s story and raise awareness as to the dangers (an understatement) of this epidemic drug. Websites selling bath salts are incredibly savvy; they even tell you what states outlaw what chemical compounds, offering mixtures amenable to the state of purchase. These websites are hardly hiding the products’ true identity, with names like “Mind Candy”, “Mind Charge”, and “Am-Hi-Co Sextacy.” It takes a large imagination to equate these with something you throw in a bath tube to relax with.

Ignorance is Not Bliss in this Case!

So while it is encouraging that the government is slowly banning the complex chemical compounds that bath salts are composed of, they still are an extreme danger to society. The PBS article gives a great analogy of how the brain reacts to bath salts. Since there is not any consistency in the manufacture of bath salts, using any kind or amount can potentially obliterate the psyche and also cause psychotic episodes of the ilk that afflicted Dickie Sanders. This is a drug that should not be glossed over; the adverse effects are immediate, horrendous, violent, and cause the worst possible consequences.

Signs & Symptoms of Bath Salt Use

  • Anxious and jittery behavior
  • Hyperthermia
  • Delirium
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of appetite
  • Severe paranoia
  • Erratic behavior with potential for hallucinations, violence and self-mutilation

 If you suspect your loved one may be addicted to Bath Salts, call us now: 800-853-1614. We have trained addiction specialists ready to help.

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