|Updated: 6/06/2012 10:10 am
||Published: 6/05/2012 9:25 pm
The designer drug, bath salts, are still a concern for law enforcement and medical professionals.
Since 2011, Oklahoma Poison Control reports 34 bath salt cases reported in health facilities.
"At first it's fun. After that it wasn't. I was empty and I never want to feel that again," said the former user.
Cases of kids taking their own lives, a woman crossing a highway and dropping her toddler, and the more recent a Florida man suspected of being high on bath salts while chewing on a man’s face.
These are not your typical bath salts you buy in a drug store to soak in a bath but the white powder is advertised as bath salts, plant food, jewelry cleaner, cell phone cleaner or shoe deodorizer.
The synthetic drug acts like an elevated cocaine, LSD, PCP or meth high.
Poison Control also says it is being sold on the Internet and the if states ban the chemicals some manufactures will alter the formula.
Local police are confident it’s being sold in gas stations and smoke shops but it’s tough to catch the sellers.
A former meth addict who bought bath salts for a legal fix knows it’s being sold.
"I think it's doing business with the people they've been dealing with and it definitly is underground,” said the woman who didn’t want to reveal her identity.
While in drug court for meth, the recovering addict had been clean for nine months and was needing a fix.
"It's over the counter, it's something I can do,” said the former user.
She said people are snorting, smoking and shooting bath salts also known as diamond powder.
Brands such as Ivory Wave, Pump It, Vanilla Sky are being sold online and in stores.
"It's like doing dope, it gives you a speed but then we started shooting it up and that's when it took us somewhere else,” said the woman.
She shot the drug for three weeks straight.
"I wasn't intending on doing it and getting hooked. I was an addict and it was right there on the counter,” said the woman.
She would get extremely angry and hallucinate.
"I screamed, I freaked out, shaking, screaming at her,” said the former bath salt user. "I was real hot, I was in the window and thought people were watching me. I thought I saw people when there weren't people."
She described the high worse than meth.
"It wierded me out, I turned into another person. As soon as it got a hold of me, I was paranoid, I was scared,” said the woman.
It’s been more than a year since she touched the bath salts and said the effects are worse than being paranoid and doesn’t know if she’ll ever recover.
She wants to encourage others who are tempted to not try bath salts.
"It affects your life. It changes who you are. It changes your soul, it pulls your soul out,” said the former user.
A pharmacist said it is difficult to treat as this is a designer drug and still new in the medical field.
"What makes these scary is that they are not detectable,” said Economy Pharmacist Chris Schiller.
The powder can be bought for about $30-$40 and creates a euophoria or rush that come with dangerous side effects.
"Like Adderall, which is an amphetamine, but its like 20 times stronger than an amphetamine so the side effects or long term effects you have no clue what they are going to be like,” said Schiller.
As manufacturers alter their formula to legally sell it in states, medical professionals said it will be harder to treat.
"That's what is scary. We don't know what the long-term effects are going to be cause it's so new, and its so potent and it creates such an effect, you don't know what harm it is going to create on the body,” said Schiller.
Last fall, Oklahoma outlawed the six main ingredients found in bath salts, including mephedrone.
Congress is also working on banning chemicals used in bath salts but they cannot agree on a law. Meantime, the DEA has a temporary ban that lasts for six more months.