The Least Known but Most Dangerous and Addictive Substance
You have certainly heard of the most commonly used and abused addictive substances, but there are hundreds of lesser-known substances that may cause addiction. Synthetic labs around the world continue to pump out new toxic and damaging drugs. There is also a wide range of naturally occurring substances abused frequently. Have you heard of any of these? Recognize the signs and symptoms of these substances to know if you or someone you love needs to seek addiction treatment
This highly addictive drug is mostly used in Russia and is also referred to as Krok, Poor Man’s Heroin, or Russian Magic. Its active substance is reportedly desomorphine, which is a type of synthetic morphine first made in the 1930s. It’s often injected after being cooked with a number of possible solvents like gasoline, paint thinner, and iodine, among others. These impurities can cause severe reactions to the skin upon injection, with scaley skin and ulcerations at the injection site. The drug’s name comes from the crocodile-like skin that users can develop around their injection sites.
Krokodil acts very quickly, but the euphoric high lasts less than two hours. Withdrawal symptoms are similar to those from heroin, leading users to rapidly seek the next high. Addiction treatment is often necessary for this type of drug. Up to a million Russians use it, and there are some confirmed reports of its use in the U.S.
This potent psychedelic is also known as B-DFLY or Dragonfly. Its name comes from the chemical shape, which resembles a bug with wings around a central ring. The trip can last up to several days, making it extremely dangerous. It was only synthesized in 1998, so little is known of its longterm effects or dangers. In the short term, it can result in hospitalization or even death due to its strong and long-lasting effects. These include both internal and external hallucinations. The physical effects include vasoconstriction or a tightening of the blood vessels. This can result in serious illness or death.
Another dangerous drug with a cute name is Foxy Methoxy, or simply Foxy. It is a synthetic tryptamine causing psychedelic experiences, and first became known around 1999. Hospitalization requiring treatment can occur with larger doses, resulting in uncomfortable hallucinations, hypertension, increased heart rate, and more. The trip experience may be similar to other tryptamine psychedelics like magic mushrooms. The negative effects are very similar as well. In addition, it is a schedule 1 illegal substance in the U.S.
Another recently developed drug that is sometimes combined with Foxy Methoxy is Benzofuran. Due to its short and longterm effects, it was banned in the UK in 2014. These short terms effects include the desired euphoria and increased energy, but with increased heartbeat, confusion, hallucinations, paranoia, and psychosis. Longterm users can suffer from permanent jaw problems, heart and liver damage, stroke, and cognitive loss. Benzo Fury causes addiction due to its heightened energy effects. This is accompanied by a withdrawal or crash, leading users into a dependency cycle.
Khat or Qat is a long-used traditional plant similar to the coca leaf in the Andes or betel nut in some parts of Asia. It can be used socially and responsibly in a similar way to coffee drinking, but longterm effects can be negative. At higher doses it can cause euphoria or a lack of inhibition. Users also suffer from constipation, depression, or psychosis as negative outcomes of use. The World Health Organization classifies it as an abusable drug, so in some countries, it is a controlled substance. Most countries where its use is traditional do not restrict its use, production, or sale.
Scopolamine is a highly useful medication used in anesthesia, as a treatment for motion sickness, and as a potential Alzheimers treatment. But when used illicitly it’s known as the most dangerous drug in the world. It’s called “Devil’s Breath” due to its use in kidnappings and other crimes. It also goes by the name burundanga. It’s odorless, tasteless, and can be deadly in higher doses, in this case around 10 milligrams.
Stories abound of people under its effect following orders like a zombie. Victims will follow all instructions, including removing their life savings from the bank and gladly handing it over to the perpetrator. What’s worse, when the drug’s effects wear off they have no memory of the experience. Some users take the drug because it can also cause euphoria and hallucinations.
Other Dangerous Drugs
The global economy and access to inexpensive laboratory equipment make the danger of new and unknown designer drugs part of the new addiction reality. Professional or backyard chemists are able to synthesize new and in many cases technically legal substances that mimic the effects of frequently used drugs like MDMA, Cannabis, and LSD.
A high profile example of this is the fentanyl analogs driving the opioid addiction, which could affect the immune system immensely, a crisis in many parts of the country. There are many lesser-known examples of adverse reactions to new designer drugs. Often, medical professionals have no knowledge of the new substance, and treatment outcomes suffer. Serious injury and death are not uncommon when dealing with these new drugs. While it may be impossible to predict which new drug will pop up next, it is possible to detect the warning signs of risky drug use. In these cases, users can seek addiction treatment and reduce their risk of exposure to these unknown dangers, as well as the currently known ones.