Designer Drugs 101

We have taught our kids about drugs and the side effects. They may even know someone who has tried drugs. But there is a new game in town – designer drugs. Here are some facts about these drugs and how to keep your kids safe.

When you talk about drugs, kids know that you are talking about cocaine, crack, heroin, marijuana and alcohol. They are used to hearing about them. But, what about the new class of drugs that is called designer drugs?

The Sad Truth

The drugs mentioned above are illegal. Using, selling or even possessing tIce Methhem will get you time in jail. These types of drugs are imported into the country from other places and sold on the streets.

Now there are other drugs that have gone high tech. These drugs are created by chemists to replace the drugs that are illegal so that people who use them or sell them can still stay in business.

Designer drugs have been created to mimic the effects of illegal drugs. Their chemical make-up is tweaked so that they really don’t contain any illegal substances. Another name for these drugs is “party drugs.” This is where most people encounter them for the first time. Unfortunately, they also encounter the awful side effects.

Being that these drugs were created in a lab, toxic substances have been used to manufacture them. Often many of these toxic chemicals are still present in the drug. That includes formaldehyde, phenylacetic acid and others. Formaldehyde isn’t even used to preserve animals any more because of its toxicity. It has been known to cause cancer.

Those who take these drugs experience the same euphoric effects as illegal drugs but with a twist. The first time these drugs are tested is when they are given to unsuspecting patrons and drug users who think they are getting one thing but are really being slipped another. Since party drugs are not the real thing, kids think they are safe to use.

The results are devastating. Many have died from using party drugs. Taking too much can result in unconsciousness, convulsions and death. Even in the manufacturing process, too much of a chemical can turn the entire batch deadly with one snort or swallowing of a pill.

The manufacturing process has moved from professional chemists to household kitchens and apartments. The problem is that many of the chemicals needed are purchased separately without raising suspicion.

Here is a condensed list of some designer drugs. You may have heard of most of them:

* Crystal Meth
* Ecstasy (MDMA)
* LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide)
* GHB (Gamma hydroxybutyrate)
* China White
* Ketamine (animal tranquilizer)

Some of these are stimulants and others relax you into a state that creates an “out of body” experience. Unfortunately, many of these designer drugs are derivatives of anesthetics and without observation, can depress heart rate and breathing. Hallucinations, anxiety, euphoria and changes in behavior can lead to violence, accidents and death.

Know the facts about designer drugs. Laws have been enacted to make them illegal to produce and use. Tell your kids about them.

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