Initially marketed as a safe, legal alternative to marijuana, Spice has since been revealed to be much more dangerous than marijuana. Its availability and misleading advertising has resulted in many people trying the substance only to discover the negative side effects such as addiction. In 2012, roughly 11 percent of high school seniors in America had used Spice or similar brands, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The long term effects of Spice are yet to be fully understood as it is a fairly new synthetic drug and it is possible that the worst side effects are yet to be discovered.
In this article, we will look at what Spice is and what the long-term effects of abuse are.
What is Spice?
Spice, also known as K2 and other brand names, is a synthetic cannabinoid. It is a powerful drug that can cause altered states of mind. Shredded plant material is sprayed with various chemicals to produce the effect of Spice. It is also sold as a liquid that is used in devices such as e-cigarettes. There is no guarantee of what you are getting as far as the chemicals used in Spice go because manufacturers are continuously changing their formula to avoid new laws. The unpredictability is what causes many people to overdose as it is hard to know how strong each dose is going to be.
Spice Withdrawal Symptoms
Spice withdrawal symptoms are one of the spice drug side effects to be aware of. Withdrawal symptoms occur when a drug is abused over a period of time in a way that causes changes in the person’s biology. As the person’s body tries to return to normal function, withdrawal symptoms are experienced.
The following are the common withdrawal symptoms experienced in Spice addicts after they stop drug use:
- Excessive coughing
- Profuse sweating
- Cravings for the drug
The symptoms of withdrawal are far more severe than marijuana due to the added chemicals. Furthermore, many manufacturers of the drug are constantly changing their ingredients to avoid persecution putting the user at risk of overdose and other issues.
Concerning Long Term Effects of Spice Abuse
Since Spice is a fairly new substance and because its formula constantly changes, the long term effects of Spice abuse are still being uncovered. The risk of overdose and death is possible because there is no way to know exactly what is in the product.
Some of the side effects reported in users so far include seizures, renal damage, heart problems and myocardial ischemia. Unlike marijuana, Spice is physically addictive and long term use will result in a dependence that is very difficult to break, especially without professional treatment programs.
As people continue to abuse the drug believing that it is a safe alternative to marijuana, further long term effects of spice will be revealed.
Treatment for Spice Addiction
As with other drug addictions, professional help is often required to help break the cycle of repeated use. Addiction is a mental disease that alters a person’s brain structure, which in turn alters their behavior and judgment. One of the common aspects of addiction is continuing drug use even though there are obvious negative consequences to a person’s health and life.
Treatment for Spice dependence incorporates many of the traditional methods of dealing with an addiction, which includes a medical detox to assist with the spice drug side effects of withdrawal, behavioral therapy to overcome the issues that led to drug abuse, and relapse prevention strategies to assist in remaining clean after leaving the rehab center.
If you are in need of Spice addiction treatment for yourself or a loved one, do not hesitate to call White Sands Treatment Centers today to find out how we can help overcome Spice dependence.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.