It’s 2018, and no one knows exactly how many drugs are on the market, or being consumed as we speak. New and more dangerous drugs seem to enter the market every couple of weeks, and while every region has their processes for securing and documenting drugs confiscated from individuals or from criminal organizations, there may never be a comprehensive guide to all drugs. All anyone would need to do is to take any number of existing drugs, and combine them, or boil down known intoxicating chemicals. While there may never be a complete guide to all of the drugs in the world, it is important to stay aware (and stay away) from the drugs that are known.
Staying aware means gaining awareness of what is out there, and can harm you or someone you love. If you suspect that a friend or loved one is dealing with addiction, try talking to them. Not every drug will prevent someone from reaching out for help, though the shame of medical problems, like addiction, may prevent some people from seeking the treatment that they need. If no one knows what an addicted person has consumed, though, this becomes another problem. Staying ahead of what’s out there means that any one person will be a little safer, and possibly able to lend a hand to someone struggling to live with addiction.
Some of these drugs are primarily available in other countries – that’s not to say that they’ve never made an appearance in the United States, but for the most part, these drugs have remained in their respective countries of origin. This hasn’t stopped the communities of users from growing, though – despite the seeming landlocked nature of many of the drugs’ influence, people within the borders of any country are automatically at risk for exposure and addiction to these drugs.
An opioid analgesic, AH-7921 is generally used in anaesthesia. Taken orally in powder or pills, used intravenously, or snorted, this drug is almost as powerful as morphine, with effects that mirror popular street opioids like heroin and meth. The high is described as euphoric, and blissful. It is just as possible to obtain the drug in a hospital as it is possible to get it on the streets. There’s no data to explain how the drug made it onto the streets, but the most likely scenarios are theft by the members of the medical community, and a few lucky rogues. AH-7921 is a synthetic opioid, making it extremely potent, and extremely dangerous.
Devil’s Breath is one of the street names for scopolamine, which was originally developed to treat several types of gastrointestinal ailments, including nausea, vomiting, motion sickness, and IBS. When taken recreationally, Devil’s Breath is a hallucinogen, and has the additional psychological effect of suppressing a person’s free will. Because of this, those who choose to use the drug to prey on others carry out robberies and assaults. Because a person can become docile while high on Devil’s Breath, it is sometimes referred to as, ‘The Zombie Drug.’ Other side effects include memory loss, seizures, paralysis, and like basically every other drug, death in high doses.
A relatively new drug, Foxy Methoxy, or Foxy, has been on law enforcement’s radar for at least the past ten years. A powerful hallucinogen, Foxy’s high is described as bright, happy, and active. Foxy’s high is also longer than many other street drugs, making it very tempting for those on the party scene with higher tolerances for hallucinogenic drugs. Foxy lowers inhibitions, and heightens sexual arousal. Like other powdered drugs, Foxy can be taken in pill form, crushed and snorted, or smoked. The ill effects of Foxy include unpleasant hallucinations, hypertension, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Foxy is most prevalent on party scenes, including festivals.
Flakka, or gravel, in many ways, is cocaine’s cruel cousin, though the chemical makeup is closer to bath salts, another psychoactive drug. It is a highly-addictive synthetic amphetamine, and also similar in chemical structure to meth. A flakka high is marked by manic and unpredictable energetic outbursts by a person using the drug, and can lead the person to make dangerous decisions on behalf of themselves, and of other people. Flakka is particularly dangerous, as one use can seriously, and possibly permanently, affect a person’s neurological systems. Since the high can cause people to behave irrationally and unpredictably, people using flakka can pose a huge danger to themselves, and others, including law enforcement.
Khat is a plant indigenous to Thailand from which the chemicals in both flakka and bath salts are copied. The difference between the plant and the drugs, though, is a matter of temperature, and of ingredients: bath salts and flakka contain synthetic cathinone, a drug found in the leaves of the plant that produce a feeling of euphoria when chewed. Bath salts produce hallucinations and mania, with other possible side effects of hyperthermia, hypertension and renal failure.
Yet another plant originally from Thailand, Kratom contains a stimulant that has been used for hundreds of years. Before it was a Schedule I Narcotic in the United States, the drug was used by workers in the Thai countryside for a boost of energy and stamina. Because of the opioid-like withdrawal effects of using Kratom, much of Asia has outlawed its use, and it is banned in several states. There is, however, a group lobbying for free use of Kratom, insisting that the medicinal properties of the leaf, which can be dried and smoked, or ground into pills for swallowing, or powder for snorting, are safe in small amounts.
Of all of the addictive drugs on the open market, South Africa’s Whoonga probably has the most unique story: allegedly developed as a treatment for HIV, Whoonga quickly entered the South African black market as a recreational drug. Usually combined in a joint with marijuana, it is possible to inject Whoonga as well. The high on Whoonga is described as relaxed, euphoric and content with a low appetite. It is worth noting that analysis of the drug found no trace of antiviral medicine, but there was, among other substances, heroin, a known opiate pain-killer.
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