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A Parent's Worst Nightmare: 2C-I ("Smiles")

A new killer drug has recently hit the U.S. All parents should be aware of this and talk to their teenagers about it:

2C-I (also called "Smiles") is becoming a serious problem. This drug comes in liquid, pill or powder form and is usually snorted or ingested.

Overdoses of the drug have been reported in Indiana and Minnesota, but 2C-I is surfacing in many parts of the country. During an overdose, the user’s muscles may become rigid and his/her body temperature becomes elevated. Overdoses have been known to cause seizures, kidney failure, and fatally high blood pressure.

The effects of 2C-I have been called a combination of MDMA (ecstasy) and LSD, only far more potent. Users have reported a speedy charge along with intense visual and aural hallucinations that can last anywhere from hours to days.

2C-I is relatively new. It first surfaced around 2003 in European party scenes and only recently made its way to the states. One user describes the high as a "roller coaster ride through hell," while another warns "do not drive on this drug," after recounting his own failed attempt on the highway.

According to data obtained by the American Association of Poison Control, half of those exposed to 2C-I in 2011 were teens. The fact that 2C-I is new and untraceable in standard drug tests makes it more of a challenge for physicians to treat. It also contributes to drug's growing popularity among high school and college-age young people.

Users of 2C-I report a physical stimulant effect, often quite strong and clean. The onset of effects usually occurs within two hours, and the effects of the drug typically last somewhere between 4 to 12 hours (depending on the dose). The effects of the drug at smaller dosages (less than 12 mg) have been reported as more mental and less sensory. The effects of the drug at larger dosages (12-30+ mg) are often described as combining psychedelic or hallucinogenic effects typical of drugs such as LSD with the empathogenic or entactogenic effects of drugs such as MDMA.

Users report feeling light and sometimes giddy or excited during the first two hours. Some physical effects include dilated pupils, high energy, and muscle relaxation. Unpleasant physical side-effects include muscle tension, nausea, and vomiting.

What teens need to know:
  • Unless they are aware of the problem, physicians in your area may not immediately test for this chemical if you are admitted to the hospital due to an impending overdose, which means they won't know what to do to help you!
  • Those caught distributing the drug face serious criminal charges.
  • Teens in North Dakota and Minnesota who gave or sold the drug to other teens who overdosed are now being charged with 3rd degree murder.
  • Teens who take 2C-I behave erratically and describe the trip as being an intense - and horrific - visual and aural hallucination that can last from hours to days.

If you suspect that your teenager is taking 2C-I or other synthetic drugs, consult with his or her doctor immediately!

My Out-of-Control Teen: Help for Parents

1 comment:

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