The Forge Recovery Center
What Is Designer Drug Addiction?
Designer drugs are synthetic drugs that have become popular in the rave and club scenes. These drugs are often called "club drugs" because of their association with nightlife and partying. Designer drugs encompass a wide range of substances, including GHB, molly, ecstasy and ketamine. While many people believe that designer drugs are safer than street drugs, this is not always the case. In fact, designer drug addiction can be very dangerous and even deadly.
What Are Common Designer Drugs?
Designer drugs are often made to mimic the effects of other illegal substances.
Designer drugs include:
Ecstasy / MDMA / Molly
Ecstasy or MDMA is similar in some ways to amphetamines and also has psychedelic properties. It causes feelings of increased energy, emotional warmth, empathy towards others, and distorted sensory perceptions. In addition, it can cause hallucinations and extreme anxiety. Chemically called "3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine," the drug comes in powder, pill, and liquid form.
It's not known for sure if ecstasy is addictive. It does affect the body's dopamine system in the same way other addictive substances do, however. Also, there are serious risks to MDMA abuse: purchasing street drugs come with the risk of taking substances you didn't intend to. The powerful opioid fentanyl often contaminates street drug stashes. Also, high doses of MDMA can affect the body's temperature, which can be lethal if MDMA is combined with other drugs such as alcohol.
GHB, gamma-hydroxybutyrate, is sometimes used to treat narcolepsy. A central nervous system depressant, GHB can create feelings of peacefulness and euphoria. GHB can also cause people to pass out. They may suffer from extreme confusion or amnesia while they're under the influence of this drug. Chemically, GHB is a building block for gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), one of the brain's main inhibitory neurotransmitters.
GHB has been linked to sexual assaults. Predators have been reported to spike alcoholic drinks with GHB, the combination of which causes victims to rapidly pass out. Higher doses can cause temporary memory loss as well. It's possible to fatally overdose on GHB, and the drug is known to be addictive.
Like many other synthetic drugs, GHB is often produced in clandestine labs and can be contaminated with other drugs.
Ketamine, which is chemically known as "Special K" or "Vitamin K," is a dissociative anesthetic. It's used medically as an animal tranquilizer and can be found in powder, liquid, or pill form. Ketamine creates feelings of detachment from the environment and oneself. The drug can also cause hallucinations and out -of-body experiences.
Ketamine is addictive and has been linked to abuse and addiction. It can also cause long-term cognitive damage, including memory problems. Ketamine users may also suffer from flashbacks weeks or even months after taking the drug. Finally, ketamine also causes physical damage to the urinary tract and digestive system over long-term use. Ketamine bladder syndrome, known as K bladder, is an often-untreatable side effect of ketamine use which causes users to lose control of their bladders.
Bath Salts / New Psychoactive Substances
"Bath salts," also known as "synthetic cathinones" are a class of drugs that have been around for a few years now. The first synthetic cathinone, methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV), was developed in the early 2000s. These Designer Drugs can be found in various forms and names as a way to dodge law enforcement and regulations. "Screen cleaner," "bath salts," and "plant food" are some of the labels these dangerous substances are often sold as.
These substances are often based on a natural stimulant called cathinone. Cathinone is found in the khat plant, which has been widely used in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula as a recreational drug and stimulant. Synthetic forms of cathinone are far more potent and unpredictable than khat, making them an extremely risky drug of abuse.
Risks of new psychoactive substances include hallucinations, paranoia, aggressiveness, and high blood pressure.
How Designer Drug Addiction Is Treated?
Like other types of addiction, designer drug addiction is treated with a combination of medication and therapy. There are a variety of medications available to treat addiction, including antidepressants, anticonvulsants, and anti-psychotics.
Therapy for designer drug addiction can include dialectic behavioral therapy (DBT), which helps people change their thoughts and behaviors related to drug use. Motivational interviewing (MI) is also often used to help people develop the motivation to change their behavior.
Rehabilitation centers offer a variety of treatments for designer drug addiction, including inpatient and outpatient programs, as well as residential treatment. Treatment typically lasts for several months, depending on the person's needs.Take A Tour Of Our Facilities