“Spice” is a psychoactive designer drug and refers to a variety of herbal mixtures which, when consumed, mimics the effects of cannabis.  It is best known by brand names K-2 and Spice.

Spice is often marketed as “herbal incense” and labeled “not fit for human consumption.”  It is purchased in head shops, convenience stores and often online.

Spice is abused mainly by smoking.  It does not have the signature smell of marijuana.  The high obtained from Spice use is generally shorter than that of marijuana.  Spice users report experiences similar to those produced by marijuana – elevated mood, relaxation, and altered perception.

Spice is frequently used by high school-age youth and is a particular problem for the military.  It is legal in most states but its use has been officially banned by the military.  The DEA considers it to be a “drug of concern.”  At least 39 states have adopted laws to ban synthetic marijuana (“Spice”).

Bath Salts

“Bath Salts” is a psychoactive designer drug whose use causes severe side effects.  It is distributed through head shops, convenience stores and through the Internet. 

In late July, 2012, law enforcement officers seized more than 4.8 million packets of synthetic drugs and material to make an additional 13.6 million packets.  The 90 arrests and contraband seizures were conducted in 90 cities in 30 states.

Bath salts are sold as crystalline powder in a small bag under a variety of names, including “Ivory Soft.” The drug is not useful as a bath product. At least 34 states have adopted laws to ban bath salts.

Bath salts are typically snorted, injected or smoked.  Bath salts are usually labeled, “not for human consumption,” sometimes allowing them to avoid being specifically enumerated as illegal.  Bath salts have been banned in most states in the U.S.

Bath salts are particularly potent.  Users experience agitation, paranoia, hallucinations and suicidality.  The drug has unusually long-lasting effects, thereby, part of its attractiveness to users, and generates drug-induced psychosis.

Long-term health problems that can result from use of bath salts include:

  • Kidney failure
  • Liver failure
  • Increased risk of suicide
  • Long-term mental illness
  • Self-mutilation
  • Death