BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) – The recently outlawed bath salts drugs have become a trend, but many do not know what kind of damage the drugs can do to the human body. Emergency medicine experts at the University of Alabama warn that the salts may seem tame, but they are quite deadly.
"Bath salts can be compared to cocaine or an amphetamine; they're a stimulant. But bath salts are not as expensive or as pure cocaine or heroin," says Erica Liebelt, M.D., professor in the UAB Department of Emergency Medicine. "Users are snorting or smoking the bath salts and also ingesting or injecting them intravenously."
Liebelt adds that the salts can cause high blood pressure, increased heart rate, psychosis, extreme paranoia and a desire to act violently. Officials at UAB say they have treated one 25-year-old user for extreme paranoia after using the salts.
"People are having psychotic incidents and cutting themselves and having to be committed. Yet, people are still looking for bath salts and wanting to buy them," Terri Glass, clinical director of the UAB Addiction Recovery Program says.