The Dangers of Counterfeit Drugs

What Are Counterfeit Drugs?

Counterfeit drugs and fake prescription drugs are any medications or pills that have been produced to look like an actual medication but have different ingredients or the wrong amount of the right ingredients. The producers of these drugs are unregulated and have no means of quality control, so the amount of actual drug in each pill will vary wildly. They can be deadly, especially when they contain fentanyl or methamphetamine, appearing exactly like a prescription pill, so the user is fooled into buying them.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, call WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today at 877.969.1993 to learn how we can help.

Where Do Counterfeit Drugs Come From?

Currently, most counterfeit drugs are produced outside of the U.S., with the majority of production occurring in Mexico, China, and India. Still, many fentanyl-laced pills are being made in the U.S. by Mexican and American domestic drug trafficking organizations, using pre-made chemicals from China and Mexico.

These substandard and unlabeled ingredients are then combined and sold online as designer or prescription drugs through dark-web internet marketplaces and social media referrals. As they are marketed to a younger crowd, many of the purchasers are high-school and college-aged people looking for stimulants to help them stay up longer hours or buy drugs for recreational use.

What Do Counterfeit Drugs Look Like?

Counterfeit drugs are fake prescription drugs. This means they are formed to look just like prescription pills. You cannot see meth or fentanyl with the naked eye, so you will not be able to tell the difference by looking. 

Popular counterfeit drugs will look like oxycodone 30mg pills (M30s), hydrocodone, Xanax, Adderall, or any other medication in pill form. The fun shapes and bright colors of many counterfeit drugs sold at parties and on the streets are an indication that they have been specifically formulated to appeal to younger people.  

Why Are Counterfeit Drugs So Dangerous?

Counterfeit drugs are hazardous because there is no way to know what is in them. Drug manufacturers only want to make a profit and do not care about the safety of the user. Fentanyl and meth are cheaper ingredients than many other drugs, so they will add these without consideration for the user’s protection.

Counterfeit Drugs and Overdose

It is incredibly easy to overdose when you take a counterfeit pill, especially if it contains fentanyl or meth. Counterfeit pills that have methamphetamine in them can result in heat stroke, heart attack, and organ failure. The medications with fentanyl can cause coma, brain damage, and respiratory depression leading to death.

The lethal dose of fentanyl is about the size of two grains of salt, and when tested by the DEA, 26% of the tablets in one sample were shown to contain at least this amount, meaning there would be over a one in four chance of dying, a considerable risk for a temporary high.

Prescription Drug Rehab at WhiteSands

At WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab, we can help you stop using prescription drugs. We have a medical detox program in which you will slowly taper off the addictive substance, and we will provide new, non-habit-forming prescriptions to help mitigate cravings and stop pain and restlessness. You will also begin behavioral therapy right away and be provided with a counselor as you detox to help you with the psychological and emotional effects of detoxing.

Prescription drug rehab begins immediately after detox, with an intensive group and individual therapy sessions, educational programs, nutrition and wellness counseling, and life skills training programs. You will be able to rest and recuperate your physical, mental, and spiritual health in our treatment center. In our luxury facility, we also offer holistic treatments and a variety of incredible amenities you won’t find in many rehabs, like a pool, a full-sized boxing gym and trainers, a recreational lounge with games and movies, and even spa treatments.

A minimum of 30 days in an inpatient program is recommended for most prescription drugs, followed by outpatient care and then our aftercare program. Contact us today to learn more about our full spectrum of care, prescription drug rehab, or medical drug detox. We are here to help you.

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.

About the Author

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.