How Addictive are Bath Salts?

In recent years, the use of bath salts amount teens and young adults has spiked. The appeal of these legal substances is that they mimic the stimulant effects of amphetamines and cocaine but are much cheaper. Before experimenting with bath salts, you need to ask yourself one question: How additive are bath salts?

What Are Bath Salts?

Bath salts are a man-made synthetic powder substance similar to cathinone, a stimulant drug. The name “bath salts” is a slang term because the drugs are sold legally at convenience stores, gas stations, and smoke shops. Often, they are marketed as incense, jewelry cleaners, screen cleaners, and plant fertilizers in order to bypass drug laws that prohibit the selling of illicit substances. 

What Is Bath Salt Abuse?

Bath salt abuse is the use of bath salts for purposes other than their intended use in order to get “high.” Snorting, smoking, eating, or mixing the powder with water and injecting it are some of the ways to abuse bath salts.

Bath Salt Abuse Amount Young Adults

Since bath salts did not start appearing in stores until around 2010, the research into bath salt abuse is ongoing. However, collected data indicates the following trends:

  • The primary users of bath salts are teens and young adults. This is largely due to bath salts being marketed toward this age group, since they are willing to take greater risks when experimenting with drugs. 
  • Bath salts are affordable and easily accessible.
  • These drugs are sold legally, so buyers mistakenly assume they are safe to use. In addition, there are no age requirements to purchase them.
  • Bath salt abuse is most common among young men. That said, bath salt users range from teenagers to middle-aged adults. 
  • When someone experiences a good “trip” using bath salts, they are likely to want to use again. 
  • A person can get hooked on bath salts after just one use.

The Dangers of Bath Salt Abuse

One of the biggest dangers of bath salt abuse is not knowing what the powder is. After all, humans are not meant to consume many of the chemicals used to manufacture bath salts. 

Another common danger of bath salt abuse is not knowing what sort of effects it will have. Some people experience euphoric states, where they hallucinate while feeling calm and relaxed. Others notice their inhibitions disappearing, so they tend to be more social, more talkative, or friendlier than normal. Others notice an increase in their sex drive. This, combined with lowered inhibitions, can result in unsafe sex.

Unfortunately, many people have had “bad trips” on bath salts. The negative effect of a bad trip on bath salts can include:

  • Paranoia
  • Panic Attacks
  • Extreme Violence
  • Intensely Agitation or Rage
  • Seizures
  • Coma 
  • Death

How Addictive Are Bath Salts?

The addictive properties of bath salts are largely related to the kind of high one experiences. For instance, when you experience a pleasurable high, the brain remembers this and begins developing a craving for more bath salts.

Conversely, if you have a negative experience the first time you use bath salts, you are less likely to use again. However, this is not always the case. As a matter of fact, some people will continue to use bath salts even after a bad trip because they have experienced far more pleasurable ones in the past.

Signs of Bath Salt Addiction 

You likely have a bath salt addiction if you experience two or more of the following signs:

  • You cannot cut down or discontinue bath salt use long-term
  • Larger amounts of bath salts are required to achieve the desired effects
  • You look forward to using bath salts and desire to use them as often as possible
  • Interest in the usual hobbies, friends, and activities is reduced
  • You are taking greater risks and putting yourself in dangerous situations
  • Normal responsibilities like school or work fall by the wayside

Other common indications of long-term bath salt use include:

  • Insomnia
  • Weight loss
  • Depression
  • Social isolation
  • Tremors or twitching
  • Aggressive or erratic behavior
  • Nose bleeds
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Headaches
  • Chest Pain

Treating Bath Salt Addiction 

Bath salt addiction is treated like other substance use disorders, requiring detox followed by a residential or outpatient program. Fortunately, many young adults also find it beneficial to move into a sober living home while undergoing outpatient treatment or after completing a residential program to help them avoid relapsing. 

Sober Living Homes in Los Angeles for Young Men Overcoming Bath Salt Addictions

Now that you know how addictive and dangerous bath salts are, you may be ready to get help for your addiction. After completing detox and starting an outpatient program or completing a residential program, you might consider continuing your recovery journey with New Life House. We have several sober living homes in the Los Angeles area to help young men regain control over their life. For more information about our sober living homes, or to become a resident, contact us today.

Last Updated on February 21, 2024


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