What is Synthetic Marijuana? (5 Things You Should Know)

What is synthetic marijuana?  This term may be new to some, but others may have recently heard about this dangerous and often abused product. Synthetic marijuana is most commonly referred to as Spice or K2 in media reports. There are five important things you should know about synthetic marijuana including what it is, what it looks like, how it’s used, its effects on the body, and its street names.

What is synthetic marijuana?

Synthetic marijuana is an artificial, dangerous, and look-alike version of marijuana. It is made using a synthetic version of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. The synthetic chemical compound is then sprayed on a mixture of plant material to form the product known as Spice, K2, or a number of other slang names. These products’ origins and chemical amounts are unknown and can be dangerous. The ingredients and strength of products containing synthetic cannabinoids are almost impossible for the user to know.

Synthetic cannabinoids are not organic, rather they’re chemical compounds created in a laboratory. Over the past decade, law enforcement has encountered numerous different synthetic cannabinoids that are being sold as “legal” alternatives to marijuana. These products are being abused for their psychoactive properties and are packaged without information on their health and safety risks.


What does synthetic marijuana look like?

Synthetic marijuana looks similar to potpourri and is usually labeled “not for human consumption.”  These chemical compounds are generally found in bulk powder form. The form is then dissolved in solvents, such as acetone, before being applied to dry plant material to make the “herbal incense” products. After the drug is applied to the dry plant material, local distributors package it for retail distribution. This is done without pharmaceutical-grade chemical purity standards, as these have no accepted medical use. In addition, distributors ignore all control mechanisms to prevent contamination or to ensure a consistent, uniform concentration of the powerful and dangerous drug in each package.


How is it consumed?

For those that use it, synthetic marijuana is typically smoked using rolling papers (“joints”), pipes, and E-cigarettes. It’s also been used as a tea. Solevo Wellness never recommends consuming this artificial, harmful, and dangerous product.


How is it harmful to the body?

Synthetic marijuana has multiple unpleasant and harmful effects on the body. The most common effects are paranoia, anxiety, panic attacks, hallucinations, and giddiness. It can also be very addictive. Those who use it may see an increase in heart rate and blood pressure, and it can cause convulsions, organ damage, or even death.


What are some synthetic marijuana street names?

Drug manufacturers often use street names for synthetic cannabinoids to try to appeal and entice youth and young adults by labeling these products with unusual and extravagant names. Some of the many street names of synthetic marijuana are: Spice, K2, Blaze, RedX Dawn, Paradise, Demon, Black Magic, Spike, Mr. Nice Guy, Ninja, Zohai, Dream, Genie, Sence, Smoke, Skunk, Serenity, Yucatan, Fire, and Crazy Clown.  These products are often sold at small convenience stores, gas stations, and on the Internet.

In recent news, synthetic marijuana has been the cause of many overdoses, which have lead to serious and life-threatening consequences. Patients should take precaution with any suspicion about synthetic marijuana, and these products should be avoided for your health and safety.

Solevo Wellness™ is a medical marijuana dispensary based in Pittsburgh, PA, dedicated to providing medical marijuana relief solutions for Pennsylvanians certified with serious medical conditions such as intractable pain including arthritis, and other serious medical conditions including glaucoma, cancer, autism, Parkinson’s disease, MS, IBD, HIV/AIDS, PTSD, and more. Founded by leading physicians, pharmacists, and medical professionals, Solevo offers personal, professional care and quality medical marijuana products.

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