K-2, also known as Spice, is the latest psychoactive substance to gain notoriety. Some sources identify K-2 as synthetic marijuana, as its active psychoactive substance is a synthetic cannabanoid (the active ingredient in marijuana is THC, tetrahydrocannabinol). This chemical, coupled with other ingredients, is what gives K-2 its intoxicating effect.
Other reliable sources say that K-2 or Spice is a collection of herbs and spices that create intoxication. None of the ingredients are technically illegal, and the product is sold as incense with labeling that indicates that it’s not for human consumption.
Effects of Synthetic Marijuana
Across the nation, K-2 users have been reporting a wide range of negative effects ranging from headaches and nausea to hallucinations and black outs. Though it’s difficult to sort through the hyperbole, here’s what has been verified:
- In most cases, K-2 contains synthetic cannabanoids, and is used to experience its psychoactive effects.
- It is not illegal on the federal level, and banning it is on a community-to-community basis.
- It does not register on drug tests, making it a preferred intoxicant of choice.
- Reliable studies do not exist that examine its short and long-term effects, making it difficult to determine if it is as dangerous as some reports claim.
Because of the dearth of clinical testing, the severity of synthetic marijuana’s effects is currently unknown, though it’s believed to cause impaired driving, poor decision-making and dependency. As a community-wide initiative, political action has begun to forbid its sale.
Warning signs of K-2 use are similar to marijuana use: red eyes, hunger, slurred speech, etc. and its suspected use should be handled in the same way.
If you feel you or your loved one must be placed in a rehabilitation treatment center for synthetic marijuana abuse, please call 888-373-5963 or fill out a patient placement form and The Way Out Recovery will aid in placement.