Although they have been around for many years in different forms, the drug that we know as ‘Bath Salts’ has become particularly well known in recent years. There have been many news stories detailing the sometimes horrific side effects regarding the abuse of Bath Salts, and due to the extreme nature of effects it can have. It is particularly important to get professional help in dealing with a dependence or addiction to this substance.
Although it is chemically similar to a naturally occurring drug known as Khat, Bath Salts are a manufactured product which has wildly unpredictable and dangerous side effects.
They are known as ‘Bath Salts’ due to the fact that they are usually very similar in appearance to the product that you might buy at your local pharmacy store to help soothe aches and pains.
You might also find them under a variety of different guises, but almost always marketed as something far more innocent, usually commonly occurring household products such as jewelry cleaner or plant food.
The one thing that bath salts all have in common, regardless of their origin or manufacture, is that they are inherently harmful, both in the long and short term – their manufacture is completely unregulated and the people making them often have no idea what potential issues that the chemicals they use in their creation could have.
The effects of bath salts are similar to other stimulant drugs, such as speed, meth and cocaine. They generally raise the levels of serotonin and dopamine, and will create a euphoric effect in the user. Unfortunately, the side effects are often severe and can be frightening and dangerous. What causes addiction can be complicated and involve many different factors, and due to the volatile nature of the side effects of bath salts, it is important to seek professional advice before attempting detox.
Physical effects will usually include an inability to sleep, fluctuating body temperature, a sudden increase in sex drive, spikes in blood pressure or heart rate and kidney pain.
Psychological effects include lowered inhibition and agitated, aggressive behavior, delusions, confusion and unusual alertness/paranoia.
When bath salts are being abused, there are additional risks and its effects can be severe dehydration, kidney failure, involuntary muscle spasms, paranoia, suicidal ideation, kidney failure and severe sleep disturbance.
Due to the fact that Bath Salts are highly addictive, dependence will usually come on quickly. Withdrawal symptoms include cognitive impairment and confusion, anxiety, insomnia and severe irritability.
It is crucial that patients experiencing addiction to Bath Salts receive careful medical treatment both during detox and recovery from their addiction. SLO recovery centers believe that the greatest chance of long term recovery comes from the holistic treatment of patients with addiction issues – this means that we treat causes of the addiction, not simply the addiction itself. Patients receive careful, one to one diagnosis and treatment, aimed at uncovering the core reasons for their addiction and helping them to develop coping strategies and techniques that will assist them long after their initial recovery phase. This is achieved through a variety of group therapies, mindfulness techniques and if required, medication for underlying mental health issues.
It is crucial that any course of treatment for this type of addiction focuses not only on treating the immediate effects, but also treats the underlying issues which triggered the addiction – this means that it is important that any mental health issues such as depression and other disorders are recognized and treated in tandem. The chances of long term recovery increase by a great deal if the individual concerned is able to recognize their own triggers and develop strategies to cope with them which do not involve the use of substances.
This might begin with a period of ‘detox’, aimed at safely managing the withdrawal symptoms as the drug makes its way out of the body. This might also include prescription of medication designed to treat pain, discomfort and cravings, a nutrition plan and medical monitoring. SLO recovery centers have vast experience in not only assisting with the short term effects of detoxification from Bath Salts addiction, but also in developing treatment plans which ensure the best possible opportunity for long term recovery.
Following the initial period of detox, patients will go on to receive guided and supported Partial hospitalization treatment, aimed at helping them to develop the necessary skills to help with their long term recovery. This might include ways to manage cravings, professionally supervised medication, fitness and other holistic therapies such as yoga or mindfulness and life skills classes. This will often be accompanied by therapy for any underlying mental health issues.
Following Partial hospitalization treatment (or in some cases, where it is safe and appropriate to do so, instead of), patients may progress to PHP (Partial Hospitalization Programs), support groups, classes or meetings, ‘sober’ housing or other transitional methods. If you are concerned about your own drug use, or that of a friend or loved one, go to slorecoverycenters.com for more information.
Our treatment plans are focused on dealing with the core, underlying issues that lead to addiction, not simply treating the addiction itself. At the center of our ethos is a close, loving and supportive community, which recognizes that loving the individual rather than punishing them is required in order to effectively treat their dependency. Many of our previous patients have been with us for a year or more because they choose to stay with us after their initial detox. Contact us today to take your first step towards a new life.