Who can forget the cruel incident which spread terror in the USA not so long ago? A 31-year-old man, Rudy Eugene of Miami, attacked a 65-year-old homeless man, stripped off all his clothes, dived on top of him, and started chewing off his face. Eugene had a history of run-ins with the police, and had been accused of domestic violence, but his history hadn’t suggested a risk of public violence. The explanation — if there is one — seems to be that bath salts can trigger a full-blown psychotic episode with extreme delusions.
Like ecstasy and methamphetamine, the drug known as “bath salts” is a designer drug, which means it is synthetic, concocted in a lab. (On the street, it’s also sometimes called “bath powder,” “herbal incense,” or “plant food.”) What makes the term “bath salts” more confusing, though, is that name is used for a surprisingly large number of different chemical combinations, reported Forbes magazine this past April.
Now the new drug causing unpredictable hallucinations has raised large concerns among health experts in our country. “Bath salts” have already made their way into communities across the US and the scary phenomenon must be prevented in Greece too. Similar cases, as the one described above, have been reported in Germany and many other European and Asian countries, and since Greece is known for its “vulnerability” to narcotics, the health service sector of our country is literally terrified.
Bath salts work by stimulating the central nervous system, kicking it into overdrive, if you will. But the drug also apparently causes paranoid delusions and likely hallucinations. Experts ring the alarm saying it is psychoactive, rather than hallucinogenic like acid, but the end result appears to be similar: delusional beliefs acted upon in violent ways. Forbes reported that the chemicals commonly called “bath salts” are most frequently manufactured and imported from China and Europe, but Greece hasn’t yet seen similarly cruel cases.
Let’s hope this “modern” designer drug won’t become headlines in our country, confirming the fears of the Greek health experts warning for gruesome crimes linked to it.