An article in the Seattle Times talks about a new trend among young people – synthetic drugs. While this may sound like a good thing on the surface as a means to avoid teens using real drugs, many of these synthetic drugs are actually more dangerous than the products they mimic. The most troubling part is that these synthetic drugs are easier to obtain because they are not universally outlawed.
Synthetic drugs like bath salts (used to mimic the effects of LSD) and K2 or spice (used to mimic the effects of marijuana) are readily available for sale online. The Seattle Times articles states that:
Law-enforcement and medical professionals say one of the most alarming characteristics of synthetic drugs is that there's no consistency in the production of the products. That means users have no idea what they are getting.
Many young people feel that these drugs are safer because they are legal or “synthetic” but that is simply not true. They end up consuming substances that they are not even sure the composition of. Much of the information in the article is based in Florida where marijuana use is illegal and several deaths have been linked to the use of synthetic marijuana substances.
This article brings to light the dangers of anything that purports itself as a drug. It also suggests the future of drug laws in this country. A federal ban has already outlawed these synthetic drugs. In order to keep teens and young people safe, stricter internet regulations may be advised to stop their online availability.
This information may also be used in the fight to legalize marijuana on other states as legalizing small amounts of the drug for personal use may be one way to stop people from experimenting with these dangerous alternatives. Synthetic marijuana, which is illegal, has been linked to more hospitalization than the real thing lately.