Are Bath Salts Addictive?
Bath salts are a dangerous drug, but anyone with an addiction or dependency can receive help.
Bath salts are addictive. The drugs are notoriously known for producing serious side effects that may be damaging from the first hit. They are a synthetic type of cathinone, which is found in nature in the khat plant. Cathinones are similar to amphetamines, which is why the amphetamine and bath salts addiction processes are similar.
The addictive properties of bath salts can lead to users losing touch with reality and losing self-control. The drug works on the neural pathways of the brain, altering how the brain works and leading to addiction. Addiction to bath salts can be devastating, but personalized addiction treatment programs are available and can get you or a loved one started on the path to recovery.
Approaching a Loved One with an Addiction
If someone you know is addicted to bath salts, chances are they are dealing with a number of physical, emotional, and mental issues. Family, friends, neighbors, and even coworkers can provide support and love during the addicted individual’s time of need.
It is important to keep in mind that your loved one may be defensive about his or her drug use. The best thing you can do is offer support and care on their journey to recovery. Make it clear to them that no matter what, you are there for them. Continued support and ongoing expressions of concern and encouragement for them to get help can be what your loved one needs to agree to treatment.
It is important to maintain a positive relationship with the addicted individual, and if you have enabled, or helped, them use drugs in the past, it is best if you stop those behaviors immediately. Enabling behaviors may include:
- Paying for drugs.
- Making excuses for them.
- Giving them rides to see their dealer and pick up drugs.
- Paying their rent.
If you are thinking of approaching a bath salt addict, prepare ahead of time and consider enlisting the help of a professional. You can also get support in navigating the difficult waters of a loved one’s addiction through:
- Family therapy and communication.
- Support groups like Nar-Anon.
- Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT).
Don’t wait to get help. Call 1-888-744-0069 today.
Regular use of bath salts can result in serious health consequences. It is important to consider treatment if you or a loved one is addicted to them.
Recovery from abuse and treatment for addiction are completed in three parts. The first part is detoxification, and during this stage, you will be supervised by medical professionals. If you choose to detox under supervision in a medically supervised inpatient facility, you will be monitored by medical professionals who will provide 24/7 support for withdrawal symptoms and take action if any complications arise. Detox can be an uncomfortable process, since your body has depended on the drugs for some time, so having medical and psychological support in a supervised facility can go a long way toward preventing relapse.
Currently, there are no medications approved to specifically treat bath salts dependence. However, medical professionals may prescribe the following medications to help mitigate some of the more serious withdrawal symptoms:
- Antipsychotics: Careful, short-term administration of some antipsychotic medications can help to manage symptoms of stimulant-related psychosis. As the psychotic features associated with stimulant abuse and withdrawal will likely abate in short order, antipsychotic medications should be reserved for severe symptoms as they may lower the seizure threshold, putting the patient at a slightly higher risk of seizure.
- Benzodiazepines: These drugs may be used to manage any extreme anxiety and/or agitation which may arise during bath salts withdrawal.
During the second stage of treatment, you may participate in emotional and psychological therapies. These will help you work on behavioral conditioning and better prepare you to live a sober life. With this step, therapists help patients work through depression, anxiety, and other co-occurring afflictions. Mental health issues occur alongside addiction more frequently than not. Because the two are interrelated, it is important to address both during treatment.
Finally, the final step of aftercare takes place. During this time, recovering patients may head to a sober living house or to their own homes. Sober living homes serve as a stepping stone between the drug rehab facility and home. These may be used to help prevent the chance of relapse as a person gets back on his or her feet. Aftercare may also include group assistance and support programs like Narcotics Anonymous (NA).
What Are the Signs of Addiction?
There are many indications of someone being addicted to bath salts. Some of these signs are easy to see, and others only develop after long-term use of the drug. Some signs you might see include:
- Combative behavior.
- Mood disorders.
- A loss of coordination.
- Problems with the heart.
- Severe depression.
- Attempts at suicide.
Addictions that are not treated can lead to serious injury and potentially death. Cardiac arrest is possible in cases of high dosages and overdose. Those with heart problems may also suffer cardiac issues if they’ve taken this drug.
Am I Addicted to Bath Salts?
Bath salts aren’t used medically, so any use of the drug is unsafe.
If you’ve taken the drug and crave it, this is a potential sign of addiction.
Withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking the drug and a growing tolerance to it are both signs of a growing addiction problem.
Call Our Hotline Today
If you are, or a loved one is, suffering from dangerous outcomes due to the abuse of bath salts, seek help today. Our 24-hour hotline is always available, and trained treatment advisors will talk you through the process of getting help.
How to Help Someone with Alcohol or Illicit Drug Addiction
Help for Prescription Drug Abuse
- John, Michelle, PGY3. Adult Psychiatry Resident, University Hospital Case Medical Center: Overview and Treatment of Bath Salts Intoxication and Opioid Withdrawal (n.d.). Retrieved March 9, 2016 from: http://mha.ohio.gov/portals/0/assets/initiatives/public-private/updatedpresentationaddictionconference.pdf
- Jerry, J., Collins, G., & Streem, D. (2012). Synthetic legal intoxicating drugs: The emerging ‘incense’and ‘bath salt’phenomenon. Cleve Clin J Med, 79(4), 258-64. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Jason_Jerry/publication/223986197_Synthetic_legal_intoxicating_drugs_the_