Many chemicals sold as’ bath salts ‘are not bath salts used in the tub, but toxic drugs whose effects are unpredictable. I smuggled myself into one youth party in the city that was called a pool party and witnessed these chemicals at work.
The music was played near a pool and a target would be pushed into the pool, when the individual would come out, the person would be high, some would be drowsy and others would be in a frenzy state, shouting and running all over the show.
The drowsy ones which most were girls would be carried on the shoulder and taken to a secluded place and the boys would have their way on that individual.
On asking one of the boys he said they had thrown bath salts into the pool and they were pushing in the girls so that they could easily prey on them.
Bath salts do not refer to any single drug but rather a group of similar substances, chemically made version of a type of a drug found in the Khat plant, an ever green shrub from East Africa and Southern Arabia.
In the same way that Spice and K2 are referred to as synthetic dagga. Bath salts are referred as synthetic stimulants, they can also cause hallucinations like that of LSD.
Bath salts often contain varied mix of chemicals, so even if the packaging looks the same, one never knows what the product actually contains.
It is usually sold in small plastics or foil packages, it can be white, off- white, brown or yellow and may also be sold in capsules or tablets or in small jars as a liquid.
Users either snort, inject, or mix it with food or drink, others take it rectally and this give a quick high effect, some inhale it using vaporizers and others smoke it.
Bath salts manufactures create many names for their products to attract as many customers as possible, some of the names include arctic blast, blue silk, cotton cloud, drone, glow stick, ivory snow , mystic, natural energy powder , tranquility, vanilla ice, snow day and many others.
The short term effects of bath salts to the mind include uncontrollable craving of the drug, false euphoria rapidly evolving into paranoia, nightmares, depression, severe agitation, self-harm, suicidal thoughts, psychosis, and violent behaviors.
Its effects on the body include skin rash, mephedrone stink( the person smells like mephedrone, a drug used in bath salts, skin crawling sensation, excessive sweating, high fever, loss of appetite, sexual dysfunction, nosebleed and nose burns, pain on the back of the mouth, ringing or buzzing in the ears, excessive grinding of teeth, muscular cramping or tension, numbness, blurred vision, rapid involuntary movements of the eyes, chest pains and heart attacks, headaches, brain stem herniation( increase of pressure inside the skull that can cause death). Join the Rechabites in their Citizens unite against drug abuse campaign.
Mthandazo Ndlovu is a drug prevention and rehabilitation specialist. For more information or help call 00263772399734 or email firstname.lastname@example.org