Many people are worried about the side effects of smoking synthetic marijuana. But understanding why spice addiction treatment is so important uncovers a larger issue.
- Table Of Contents
- K2 Effects – What Does Spice Do To You
- Risk Factors For Spice Addiction
- Signs of K2 Addiction
- How Long Does K2 Stay In Your System?
- Signs of Spice Withdrawal
- Rehab For People On Spice
K2 and spice are two of the most common names for synthetic cannabis. These products are sold in either liquid form or more often applied to dried plant material. Although they are sometimes marketed as “safe” alternatives to marijuana, the truth is that K2 is much more dangerous than natural cannabis.
Making matters worse is that spice is legal for sale in most places due to lack of understanding on the topic. This has ultimately led to an increasing number of people who need K2 withdrawal treatments. As a result, spice addiction is a real and pressing issue for many families across the country, and adequate support is one of the most effective ways to help.
We created this short guide to synthetic marijuana addiction treatments to hopefully help you understand how to talk to an addict in your life and get them on the road to recovery.
K2 Effects – What Does Spice Do To You
It’s important to have a solid understanding of what spice is and how it affects the body and brain. K2 side effects can be relatively wide-ranging. Some are mild, while others are extremely strong and even dangerous. Different people have very different experiences based on precisely what brand and batch of synthetic weed they get.
The fact of the matter is that spice can actually be made from lots of different compounds, but still technically fall under the same category. But don’t let the “synthetic marijuana” label fool you, people on spice face risks and symptoms that are nothing like natural cannabis.
The milder side effects of smoking spice do include some of the same sensations as natural weed. This can include relaxation and elevated mood, as well as a deeper perception of your environment. However, this type of reaction is much less common than the powerful and potentially dangerous ones.
It’s much more likely that those using spice will experience extreme levels of anxiety and paranoia, which can manifest as simple confusion or even frightening hallucinations.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. In fact, many spice users have been taken to hospitals because of life-threatening reactions, including extremely rapid heart rate, uncontrollable vomiting, violent behavior, as well as suicidal thoughts.
Not much is currently known about the long-term effects of K2 on the brain, but doctors are already very concerned.
Sadly, these are actually the lucky cases. The real reason spice addiction is becoming such a decisive battle is the rapidly increasing number of spice overdoses.
The city of New Haven, Connecticut had over 70 reported cases of K2 overdoses in one day alone last summer. These figures are happening all over the country, including over 300 overdoses in Washington D.C. over the course of just one month earlier this year.
Unfortunately, not every one of these overdoses ended in recovery either, with several people losing their lives to a so-called “safe” alternative to marijuana. These deaths should serve as a serious wake-up call for us all.
Risk Factors For Spice Addiction
Just like with anything else, K2 addiction can happen to anyone. It can’t be explained away with simple risk factors. Addiction is an extremely complex topic with no short and sweet answers.
However, that being said, a few notable things may indicate an increased likelihood someone becomes addicted to spice.
Two of the most common risk factors for any type of addiction is genetics and environment. This means if there is a history of substance abuse in your family, there is a higher chance you’ll also become addicted. Alternatively, factors such as chronic stress from trauma or abuse can also significantly increase the chances of becoming substance dependent.
Regarding K2 addiction, there are some key risk factors to keep in mind, if you’re worried a loved one may be liable to go down that route. These can be simple things, such as being a younger male.
However, harder to notice factors, such as pressure from peers and lack of parental involvement, can also be red flags for spice addiction.
Lastly, it’s important to understand the impact of mental health on all forms of addiction. People living with mental health issues tend to be much more likely to end up substance dependent, so this is always one of the most significant risk factors to keep in mind.
Signs of K2 Addiction
There are certain signs, some behavioral, others physical or psychological, that may indicate a loved one is suffering from an addiction to spice. They may display drastic changes in behavior which can include radical changes to their typical behavior.
It can also manifest itself in sleeplessness, catatonic behavior, engaging in risky behavior, aggressive outbursts, or increased irritability. You may even see signs of disorientation or paranoia; some patients have been known to suffer from ongoing delusions and paranoia induced hallucinations.
One of the first things you will likely notice is the individual withdrawing from others. The physical signs can include vomiting, muscle spasms, and prolonged headaches. Other warning signs include continually seeking out money or favors to obtain drugs, no matter the cost, as well as consuming more copious amounts of the drug.
It may not be obvious someone is using spice as many people on spice will hide their drugs. Where do addicts hide their drugs? It could be on their person or in the last place you would think to look in their vehicles or bedrooms. It’s also important not to ignore more clear-cut signs, such as failing a drug test, or in dire situations, overdosing.
It sounds crazy, but many people deny the truth until it’s too late. Not only can these signs help loved ones identify a K2 or spice addiction, but it could also help the individual come to terms with the fact they have a problem. Don’t turn a blind eye to obvious signals simply because you don’t want to face the truth. Be there for the ones who need you most.
How Long Does K2 Stay In Your System?
Due to the fact that k2 drug ingredients vary greatly, it’s hard to say definitively how long does spice stay in your system. The more common compounds of JWH-018 and JWH-073 stay in your system for 72 hours. While addicts may try to find out how to get spice out of your system, they most likely won’t be clean long enough to do this successfully.
This means drug tests will usually allow you to find out who needs addiction support. The synthetic weed side effects are short-lived which results in many people on k2 to chase the spice drug effects by using more of the product every day.
The long-term effects of spice are still unknown, but the short-term k2 drug side effects will be quite apparent. This is the best time to get a drug test done if you can get the person to agree. It could save the person’s life as spice drug deaths are on the rise.
Signs of Spice Withdrawal
Some people suffering from an addiction to spice may try to quit on their own, an arduous and potentially dangerous task. Some experts have likened the process of quitting spice to quitting crack or heroin. The symptoms can be intense, and in several ways, life-threatening. It is imperative that individuals have adequate support and care during the process of synthetic marijuana addiction treatment and detoxification.
Physically, individuals can experience an array of symptoms. Some of the most common include uncontrollable nausea or diarrhea, an inability to sleep, and excessive sweating. There are also severe and dangerous mental reactions to withdrawal from spice. Many experience severe depression and suicidal thoughts.
Psychotic episodes have also been recorded as a manifestation of synthetic cannabis withdrawal programs. It can be extremely difficult to witness a loved one suffering from withdrawal, but this process is necessary for them to one day become, and stay, sober.
Rehab For People On Spice
If your loved one is suffering from an addiction to K2, then the safest way for them to go about quitting the substance is through a qualified rehab program. Although it wasn’t always the case, most insurance programs now must legally cover or assist with the cost of rehab services for mental health or substance abuse.
Outpatient programs are typically utilized for milder cases of addiction. With this sort of program, the individual can continue to attend school or work and live at home while getting counseling in an office type setting. However, with the severe and volatile nature of synthetic cannabis withdrawal treatment, this option is not typically viable.
Inpatient rehab programs, on the other hand, require the patient to be present 24 hours a day. In this setting, there are professionals on hand the entire time to help care for those dealing with the physical and mental withdrawal symptoms. Many people wonder how long does rehab last, and the answer is it depends.
While most programs will last between 28 and 30 days, more severe cases of addiction can require patients to stay up to 90 days. The goal of rehabilitation programs is to detoxify, making sure the substance is entirely out of the individual’s system. They offer the tools and support to help patients keep moving forward without falling back into a life of illicit substances once they leave the program.
Addiction to K2/Spice is challenging to live with, both for users, and those who must watch their loved ones suffer. The statistics are dire, and if you or someone you care for needs help with their addiction, then the best thing you can do is not delay and act as soon as possible.
There are rehabilitation centers all over the country designed to help people suffering from K2 addiction put their best foot forward toward a sober tomorrow. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to call your local addiction helpline.
Professionals are always ready to answer any questions you might have or guide you on the next couple steps to take. It’s always free to call, so why not take the first step toward a brighter and healthier tomorrow for you or a loved one?