Synthetic Marijuana is a substance which sounds similar to standard marijuana, but is actually quite different. The user is also subjected to side effects which are much more unpleasant, and sometimes even dangerous. A number of hospitals have recently admitted patients who seemed confused and unusually agitated, and after the patients were sedated the doctors begin to learn more about this hazardous substance.
How Does Synthetic Marijuana Differ From Traditional Marijuana?
Street slang which is used to describe Synthetic Marijuana includes “Green Giant” or “K2.” It can be purchased very cheaply, sometimes for $5, and this is one of the things that make it attractive. While drugs such as cocaine are produced using single chemical, synthetic marijuana can be comprised of dozens, sometimes even hundreds of chemicals. These chemicals are then applied to dried plants via spray.
Traditional marijuana is derived from the cannabis plant which is grown naturally. Despite the many problems that are associated with it, this traditional and more expensive form is much safer when compared to synthetic marijuana. The many compounds which are found in the synthetic version are produced in laboratories in Asian countries such as China, and upon use each of them is active within the brain’s CB1 receptor.
One key difference between synthetic and traditional marijuana is the potency. Dose by dose, synthetic marijuana is often hundreds of times more powerful than classical marijuana. Each synthetic chemical used in its manufacture is completely prohibited within the U.S.
Why Synthetic Marijuana Is Dangerous
For years both experts in government, doctors and other researchers have debated on the dangers of using classical marijuana. With Synthetic Marijuana there is no debate: this stuff is bad news. The one argument that classical marijuana users have maintained is that it doesn’t cause overdose, and they’re right.
This is not the case with synthetic marijuana. The chemicals are simple to acquire online, and although they are prohibited to import, it is incredibly difficult to prevent them from entering the U.S. Many of the chemicals are sold in the form of a powder, but others arrive as a type of syrup. These chemicals may be dissolved within a solvent that is organic, after which they will evaporate. The solvent is then simply sprayed onto plants such as oregano, packaged and sold, often in colorful and shiny packaging.
Extreme aggression is one of the most common side effects associated with synthetic marijuana. Doctors routinely have to place patients under intubation and anesthesia just to prevent them from hurting others or themselves. Synthetic marijuana causes a rapid heart rate and pain, and kidney failure is also a possibility. Additional symptoms which are associated with this substance include vomiting, paranoia, hallucinations, high blood pressure and seizures. As of this writing no antidote has been developed for synthetic marijuana and doctors can only manage the complications as best they can in the hope that the patient will make it through their debilitating state. It is important for healthcare professional, educators and others to educate the public on the dangerous of synthetic marijuana.