Although some bath salts can be used for bathing, bath salts also refer to various synthetic drugs sold on the black and gray market for recreational use. Also referred to as synthetic or designer drugs, bath salts are usually sold while being labeled as random products, like plant food or cell phone cleaner, to avoid legal detection and may be labeled “not for human consumption.” As substances that contain synthetic cathinones and other chemicals usually unknown to users, their effects can be dangerous and long-lasting, starting with physical dependence and addiction. Fortunately, our bath salts detox at Clearbrook Massachusetts can help those battling a dependence on the substance.
Common Bath Salts Withdrawal Symptoms
Bath salts are considered synthetic stimulants that inhibit the reuptake of dopamine. This chemical is linked to a variety of important functions, including movement, memory, behavior, cognition, mood, learning, reward, and motivation. Similar to cocaine, bath salts block the recycling of this chemical, which causes a build-up in the brain that causes a surge of side effects.
Due to their effects on dopamine, it’s possible to develop a dependence on bath salts as the brain gets used to the extra stimulation. The reward center learns to crave this substance, especially its euphoric side effects. After a while, this contributes to physical dependence, which is marked by withdrawal symptoms.
When a person stops using bath salts suddenly or if they don’t have access to the drug after long-term abuse, they’re likely to start experiencing withdrawal symptoms. A lack of dopamine causes most stimulant withdrawal symptoms, which is why long-term bath salts users may experience similar effects when they try to quit. The brain will struggle to produce dopamine at an average rate after using these drugs, and symptoms are the result of diminished dopamine levels and balance in the brain.
Common withdrawal symptoms of bath salts include:
- Feelings of foggy-headedness
- Inability to focus
- Intense cravings
- Muscle aches
- Slow thinking
- Suicidal thoughts
Stimulant withdrawal isn’t necessarily considered deadly, but medical complications can occur in certain circumstances. The longer and more heavily a person uses bath salts, the worse their withdrawals will be. In addition to physical symptoms, severe depression and suicidal thoughts can occur and are usually the most dangerous. Therefore, individuals wanting to quit bath salts should undergo the detox process with the support of a medical team.
Bath Salts Withdrawal Timeline
The bath salts withdrawal timeline and the symptoms experienced vary depending on certain factors, such as the dose used, the length of time bath salts was used, and the last dose. There are genetic factors that may affect the nature of withdrawal symptoms, as well. For instance, individuals with a predisposition to mental illness or a history of suicidal thoughts are more likely to experience intense withdrawals.
Additionally, bath salts withdrawal tends to follow a timeline in two distinct phases: a crash and cravings. The initial crash is marked by depression and lethargy, followed by a withdrawal that includes intense cravings. Stimulant withdrawal can occur as quickly as 90 minutes after the person’s last use, with bath salts having a shorter half-life similar to that of cocaine.
A drug’s half-life refers to the time it would take for half of the substance to leave a person’s system. Amphetamines that are sometimes mixed into bath salts have a much longer half-life, which can impact the withdrawal timeline. Overall, bath salts withdrawal can take more than a week to stop, lasting anywhere from seven to 10 days.
Bath Salts Withdrawal Treatment at Clearbrook
While bath salts withdrawal won’t be life-threatening, it is unpredictable. Withdrawing from any chemical dependence has the potential to cause medical complications. The safest and most effective way to get sober is with professional care. Our Massachusetts inpatient drug rehab offers medically supervised detox led by a team of experienced professionals that can address difficult withdrawals.
With the aid of detox medications, a steady tapering schedule, and a safe environment, our team can help you or your loved one recover from bath salts abuse.