New and popular prescription and illicit drugs usually flood the black market quickly in cities around the U.S. Among the most abused drug of 2015, we find Fentanyl, an opioid narcotic that is thirty to fifty times more potent than heroin. There has been a surge in overdose deaths caused by Fentanyl across the nation. Very often, the drug heroin is laced with Fentanyl and the user may or may not know about it. Health officials are very concerned and are working toward launching a campaign that will raise awareness of Fentanyl among drug users. Opioid narcotics depress the respiratory system and can cause a person to stop breathing. This effect happens very quickly with Fentanyl abuse. The drug is very popular in both cities and suburbs across the U.S., and Fentanyl related deaths have increased. Overdose caused by Fentanyl and other opioid drugs can be reversed with the drug Naloxone, also known as Narcan, if it is administered quickly. Some States in the U.S. are distributing Naloxone to injection drug users and lay people to use in the event of an overdose. Baltimore, Maryland has a program called Staying Alive Drug Overdose and Prevention and Response. It issues Naloxone and trains people for its use.
Another trending drug of 2015 is synthetic cannabinoids often called Spice, K2, etc. Hospitals and poison control centers are being inundated with visits and calls for help, linked to the use of synthetic cannabinoids. During the month of April 2015, there were over 160 patients hospitalized within a two-week period for treatment concerning synthetic cannabinoid use. New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo issued an alert regarding the dangers of this drug. The Poison Center of Maryland also issued an alert and both States have devised a list of several of the compounds found in the drug. Synthetic cannabinoids is chemically related to the active compound THC that is found in marijuana, but it is far more dangerous. Some of the adverse effects of synthetic cannabinoid abuse are anxiety, shaking, hallucinations, agitation, nausea, vomiting, paranoia, high blood pressure, seizures and violent behavior.
Flakka (alpha-PVP) is a dangerous cathinone drug whose use has surged in Florida and other parts of the U.S. in 2015. The drug is chemically similar to other cathinone drugs that are popularly known as bath salts. Flakka comes as a white or pink crystal that can be taken orally, snorted, injected or vaped. Vaporizing the drug causes an immediate delivery into the blood stream, making it very east to overdose on. An adverse effect of Flakka is a condition known as excited delirium, which involves paranoia, hallucinations, hyper-stimulation, violent aggression and self-injury. Abuse of Flakka has caused deaths by heart attack and suicide. The drug also causes high body temperature that may lead to kidney damage or failure.
Pure caffeine powder is available for sale online and has also become another trending drug for 2015. Young people may take it to lose weight or for the added stimulation it brings when they have to study or want to party with their friends. One teaspoon of pure caffeine powder is equivalent to approximately twenty-five cups of coffee, which is a lethal amount. Adverse effects of the drug include a fast and erratic heartbeat, seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, disorientation and death. Pure caffeine powder is so potent that ordinary measuring tools are not adequate to measure safe amounts, thus making it easy for users to overdose. The FDA recommends that pure caffeine powder be completely avoided and is working to educate parents about the dangers of the drug.
E-cigarettes were another popular choice for 2015. Although the product is marketed as a safe alternative to smoking regular cigarettes, it is still not known how safe they are. E-cigarettes contain nicotine, which is highly addictive, and other known carcinogens and toxic chemicals. Future studies may yet prove that e-cigarettes are more harmful to your health than regular cigarettes. Being educated about what illicit and prescription drugs contain and what their adverse effects are, is your safest line of defense against confronting their dangers. If you or someone you care about suffers from addiction to any of these drugs, get them the help they need. Caring addiction specialists are available to take your call and help you find the detox and treatment programs that best suit your needs.
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