There have been several reports of individuals being hospitalized after using synthetic marijuana. Understanding the difference between synthetic and natural marijuana is very important, especially for those not opposed to using one or both recreationally.

Natural marijuana, to start with most basically, is a plant that people tend to smoke for its mild psychoactive effects, or for the proposed medical benefits it is rumored to have. There have never been reports of individuals overdosing or dying in relation to natural marijuana, and in most cases its effects are mild in comparison to other drugs. However, the need for enrolling the best drug treatment center can’t be ruled out yet in all cases.

Synthetic marijuana is nothing of what is mentioned above. Synthetic marijuana is not even a plant that is grown. The drug often comes packaged in small, colored and animated packages that are marketed to look safe and legal. Inside, people often find a substance that can look like real marijuana, or even have small flowers. This drug however, is completely man made.

The way it works is that the drug is treated and created with chemicals meant to mimic the THC in natural marijuana, which is its most powerful psychoactive ingredient. The chemicals in synthetic marijuana are designed to give similar effects of natural marijuana while still not showing up on drug tests. The desired effects include sensations of relaxation, feeling good, drowsiness, increased appetite and slowed reactions. These drugs however are highly unstable. The only reason that synthetic marijuana can sometimes be sold in stores is because its chemical composition is not illegal yet. The list of controlled substances bans drugs and chemicals that are known to be dangerous and harmful. In order for synthetic marijuana to continue to be legal, those that manufacture it often need to change the chemical composition, which in turn effects how it affects people.

Synthetic marijuana has been found to cause negative effects ranging room heightened heart rate all the way through to extreme psychotic episodes and everything in between. The chemicals and potency of the chemicals in synthetic marijuana can’t be distinguished by anyone short of a chemist. Each time an individual uses synthetic marijuana, they put themselves at serious risk. News stories have recently told of individuals who became violently ill after using synthetic marijuana, one boy even took to slamming his head into the concrete floor until emergency personnel arrived.

Perhaps more widely known, are the nearly unbelievable reports of the behavior of individuals on bath salts. Like synthetic marijuana, bath salts are a designer drug, or completely chemically engineered by people. In essence, synthetic marijuana and bath salts can be considered one in the same. Both are chemically manufactured; both have varying degrees of reactions and strengths and both have caused serious health problems for many people.

It is extremely important that the difference between natural marijuana and synthetic marijuana be widely circulated. Although natural marijuana is not nearly as dangerous as it’s synthetic counterpart, it is no less illegal (in most places) and can still pose serious that’s too the health and wellbeing of individuals. However, it should be expressly clear and perpetuated that the synthetic version is a life-threatening substance that should not be used under any circumstance. It is especially important that this information be passed onto the younger generation. College goers have been found to be the largest group of synthetic marijuana users that use the substance because they perceived it as legal and safe. The only similarity between synthetic and natural marijuana are the words used to name them.

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