By Rhonda Apple, Pentagram NewspaperJuly 26, 2011
ARLINGTON, Va., July 25, 2011 -- Bath Salts are the new “designer drug” becoming increasingly popular on the streets.
Designer drugs are created to get around existing drug laws, said Chris Miller, chief of detectives on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va.
“Unlike Spice [another designer drug], we want to be ahead of the game with Bath Salts,” said Miller. “We've talked to the local police departments, and they're seeing it and it's only a matter of time before we see it here,” he said.
Miller said police surveillance will be conducted at shops where Spice was sold, to know if Bath Salts are available at these same locations.
He said Spice was first banned by The Old Guard Commander Col. David P. Anders. In May, the Drug Enforcement Agency exercised executive power to make Spice illegal to sell, distribute, possess and use.
“With Bath Salts, the packaging states, ‘Not fit for human consumption,' the same as packaging for Spice,” he said. Miller also said packaging instructions include directions to use Bath Salts in baths to make one feel better, to have a nice aroma while taking a bath and to relax from the aroma of bath salts in hot water.
“None of this is true,” Miller added. “Bath Salts are believed to be a synthetic form of cocaine. It's 100-percent man-made. Altered compounds within a chemical formula happen and they give the body the same effect [as cocaine].”
“A common symptom is flashbacks,” said Miller. He stressed that Bath Salts, which are usually snorted, “appear to be extremely addictive.”
Side effects include: increased heart rate; agitation; insomnia; lack of appetite; increased alertness; anxiety; fits and delusions; nosebleeds and nose burns; muscle spasms; blood circulation problems; increased blood pressure; kidney failure; seizures; risk of renal failure; hallucinations; aggression; severe paranoia; panic attacks; fluctuation in body temperature; muscle tension and twitches; jaw grinding; dilated pupils; violent rage; hot flashes; dysphoria; loss of bowel control; breathing difficulties; cravings; vasoconstriction; hypertension; chest pain; headache and suicidal thoughts.
“It's being bought and sold the same as the traditional form of cocaine or ecstasy, in a powder form enclosed in foil packages,” said Miller.
“The cost is between $20 and $60 a gram, which would be traditional for a regular drug on the street.”
“Spice took us a bit by surprise on the base, so we want to be ahead of the game with Bath Salts,” said Miller.
“Commanders and first sergeants need to remind Soldiers that taking a designer drug is against Army regulations,” he stressed.
Miller said common brand names for Bath Salts include: Ivory Wave; Red Dove; Vanilla Sky; Bliss; White Lighting; Hurricane Charlie; Cloud 9; Ocean; Scarface; Bubbles; Purple Rain; Mint Mania; Recharge and Fly.