Fentanyl 101: How it Comes in through Black Markets

Fentanyl 101: How it Comes in through Black Markets

Fentanyl is the worst drug on the illegal black market of drugs. It is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine. Fentanyl can be absorbed through the skin, so it is very easy to overdose on fentanyl. Fentanyl has been linked to many deaths due to its high potency and easy access. In this blog post, we will discuss why fentanyl is the worst drug on the black market, and why it is so dangerous to clean up! 

 

Potency and Uses of Fentanyl 

Fentanyl is a schedule II drug, which means it has a high potential for abuse and can lead to severe psychological or physical dependence. Fentanyl is typically used to treat severe pain, such as post-operative pain or cancer pain. However, fentanyl is also often used recreationally due to its high potency and euphoric effects. 

 

Seeking Help with Drug Abuse 

Fentanyl is the worst drug on the black market because of its high potency, easy access, and difficulty to clean up. If you or someone you know is using fentanyl, please get help immediately. Fentanyl is a very dangerous drug that can easily lead to overdose and death. 

If you have any questions about fentanyl or other drug abuse, please feel free to contact us at info@drugrehabilitationcenter.com. We are here to help! 

 

Accidents with Fentanyl 

Fentanyl is so dangerous because it is so potent. Just a few grains of fentanyl can be deadly. Fentanyl is also easy to access, as it can be bought online or on the street. Many people who use fentanyl don’t know how potent it is, which makes accidental overdoses more likely. 

 

Handling Difficulties 

Cleaning up fentanyl is extremely difficult and dangerous because of its potency. Just touching fentanyl can be dangerous, as fentanyl can be absorbed through the skin. This makes it difficult for first responders and law enforcement to safely clean up fentanyl. 

 

Should You Clean Up Fentanyl? 

If you find fentanyl in your home, it is important to call a professional to clean it up. fentanyl is extremely dangerous and should not be handled by untrained individuals. If you must handle fentanyl, make sure to wear gloves and a mask to avoid exposure. Seriously, the consequences of mishandling the drug will likely land you in the hospital. Fentanyl is a powerful drug that can have deadly consequences if not handled properly.  

While fentanyl is the most dangerous drug to clean up, it’s important to remember that all drugs can be dangerous. If you find any type of illegal drugs in your home, it’s best to call a professional to clean it up. Many cleaning companies offer drug lab clean up services, and most insurance policies will cover the cost of clean up. Drug labs can be extremely hazardous, and it’s best to leave them to the professionals. Keeping your family safe is worth the cost of hiring a professional! We here at Spaulding Decon as licensed and experienced in cleaning up such issues. 

Contact Spaulding Decon Today if you even THINK you might have fentanyl in the house! 

 

Conclusion 

If you need help cleaning up a drug lab, and specifically fentanyl get out immediately, your life could be in danger from a few particles in the air. We are here to help!  

 

Sources:  

– “What Is Fentanyl?” Drug Rehabilitation Center, 20 Feb. 2020, drugrehabilitationcenter.com/what-is-fentanyl/. 

– “What Is Fentanyl?” National Institute on Drug Abuse, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 20 Nov. 2019, fentanyl.drugabuse.gov/about-fentanyl/what-fentanyl. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020. 

– “Fentanyl.” DEA, U.S. Department of Justice, dea.gov/druginfo/drug_data_sheets/Fentanyl.pdf.. Accessed 18 Feb 2020.” 

How to Avoid an Accidental Overdose of Fentanyl” verywellmind.com, 22 Jan. 2020, verywellmind.com/how-to-avoid-an-accidental overdose -of fentanyl -5067404. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020. 

– ” fentanyl.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Jan. 2020, cdc.gov/drugoverdose/opioids/fentanyl/index.html.. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020. 

 

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Physical & Psychological: Crystal Meth Signs & Symptoms

Physical & Psychological: Crystal Meth Signs & Symptoms


Signs and Symptoms of Crystal Meth

Crystal meth is a narcotic whose common name is Crystal Methamphetamine. It is a drug that is used for recreational purposes as there aren’t any medical uses for it, but it is extremely addictive. This drug typically comes in a clear crystal or glossy blue and white rocks. Meth is typically smoked, however, some users swallow, snort or inject it intravenously. Meth is a manufactured stimulant that provides the user with a euphoric rush, exhilaration, arousal, alert, some say it makes them feel subhuman. Users also have reported feeling reduced appetite, agitation, paranoia, confusion, and delusions. Crystal meth can be laced with a drug called Fentanyl which can be quite deadly and is responsible for the increase in overdoses in the last few years.


According to drugfreeworld.org, the stages of meth are: 
 

  1. The Rush– this is the initial feeling the user gets when the drug hits their system. During the rush, the user can experience high blood pressure and pulse. Often the Meth rush will last up to 30 minutes. 
  1. The High– Typically the rush is followed by the high which often creates delusional effects where the user becomes fixated on a specific item. They can become argumentative and confrontational. The high can last from 4-16 hours. 
  1. The Binge– Addicts will build a habit of binging which is when the body craves the drug, and you begin to abuse the drug to calm the urge to be high. Some addicts will binge anywhere from 3-15 days. Abusers can become hyperactive on many levels. Each time the drug enters their body they will experience a smaller rush than the original first one until they are unable to feel a rush at all.  
  1. Tweaking– Tweaking is a phase that the abuser can experience and is the most dangerous of all these phases. This is the point where the user will no longer experience a rush after using the drug. At this point they are no longer unable to hide their feelings of void. They may feel empty, shame, and they can become psychotic. Hallucinations become so vivid that they lose sight of what is real and what is not. This makes them dangerous as they can become incredibly agitated and be a danger to themselves as well as those around them. They may hear voices or see things that aren’t there.  
  1. Meth Hangover– The hangover is the period when you feel completely spent, hungry, dehydrated and completely exhausted. This phase usually lasts anywhere from 2-14 weeks. Because it is so difficult for the addict to regain their strength and energy, many times they will feel the need to continue using to chase that high once again. 
  1. Withdrawal– After some time has passed since the individual last used meth, they will become depressed, lack enthusiasm for much, and some even become suicidal. Because this drug is so addictive, drugfreeworld.org reports that 93% of abusers return to abusing meth after treatment.  


Meth Amphetamines and Amphetamines- Why Adderall is often Compared to Meth

While Crystal Meth has no legal medical use, many users will access this drug on the street with the intention to lose weight, ease depression. There is however a meth product that is legal to take to treat obesity and ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder). When interviewing Benjamin Bueno, an Addiction Specialist at Rock Recovery Center in FL, he explained that the drug Adderall which is often used to treat ADHD in patients, is how what he can best compare meth to. Ben went on to say that “opioids are the number 1 killer of people ages 21-45”.

You can check out Ben’s podcast Real Recovery Talk for some resources and information about recovery and sobriety. Adderall is the brand of a prescription drug commonly prescribed to people struggling to focus. It is also highly abused amongst college kids. Adderall is a stimulant that contains both Dextroamphetamine and amphetamine. Adderall is also used to treat narcolepsy. Adderall can become addictive and can increase your chances of developing an addition. Side effects of taking Adderall include dry mouth, nervousness, weight loss, seizures, or paranoia, to name a few. Many people who have used crystal meth compare its effects to taking Adderall.

Meth Amphetamines (Crystal Meth) is chemically like amphetamines. Amphetamines are a synthetic drug that is legally prescribed to treat ADHD in adults and children. This drug works with your central nervous system and speeds up the body’s responses between your brain and the rest of your body. According to the Cleveland Clinic for Health you can find amphetamines in drugs such as the following: 

  • Adderall®. 
  • Concerta®. 
  • Dexedrine®. 
  • Focalin®. 
  • Metadate®. 
  • Methylin®. 
  • Ritalin®. 
  • Vyvanse ®. 

 

How Meth Amphetamines Affect the Body

Both methamphetamine and amphetamine are drugs that stimulate the body but have different effects based on the chemicals the drug are made up of. Amphetamines can cause side effects such as: psychosis, nausea, heart disease, circulation problems, fatigue, and addition. 

Meth can be produced using certain cold medicines and a variety of household products which is extremely dangerous but a customary practice for some addicts. 

Cooking meth is a dangerous practice that can cause severe burns, skin irritation, and even produce serious harm to your kidneys. Exposure can cause serious side effects such as vertigo, massive headaches, nausea or can be fatal. These laboratories are at risk of explosions or fires. According to the Office for Victims of Crime, approximately 15% of meth labs are discovered due to an explosion or a fire.  

 

How to Identify a Meth Lab from afar

Meth is imported into the US from Mexico. It is made in chemical labs commonly found in residential homes, often referred to as Clandestine Labs. Meth homes commonly produce odors that resemble ammonia or ether. According to https://ag.nv.gov/Hot_Topics/Issue/Meth_House/, many people compare the odors to cat urine or rotten eggs. Meth homes are typically blacked out to prevent any visibility from the outside. Methods of ventilation are taken to eliminate or reduce toxic fumes. People who set up meth homes will likely have a security system in place to prevent anyone from approaching the property. They will have large quantities of unusual trash. Some of these items can include torn lithium batteries, stained coffee filters, empty containers of starter fluids, acetone, alcohol, antifreeze and other chemicals, rubber hoses, gloves, and respirator masks.  

It is important to maintain your distance if you suspect a neighbor is cooking meth in a laboratory near you as it can produce potential health complications. Do not try to take matters into your own hands. Contact authorities for assistance.  

To learn more about the clean-up process of meth homes visit our service page about Meth Lab and Drug Lab Cleanup.

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Fentanyl Basics 101: The What, Symptoms, and Solutions

Fentanyl Basics 101: The What, Symptoms, and Solutions

What is Fentanyl?

There is a drug epidemic in our country that is affecting a magnitude of people residing in the US. This opioid epidemic is driven by illicit drugs such as Fentanyl, methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine to name a few. According to the American Medical Association, there have been more than 107,000 deaths as a result of drug overdose between 2020-2021.

Fentanyl is a drug that has been around since the 60’s. It is a synthetic drug that is 50-100 times stronger than morphine, according to dea.gov/factsheets/fentanyl.  It was originally created as a pain management treatment for patients with cancer, major injuries, or nerve damage. It is administered in the form of a patch, lozenge, or syringe to alleviate pain. Primarily manufactured in Mexico however, it is now primarily trafficked through international mail from China.

This drug is so powerful that many have elected to use it for recreational purposes and is often added to other drugs to increase potency, such as heroin, cocaine, meth, molly and or ecstasy. Users seldom know that their narcotics are being laced with Fentanyl which is why the number of overdose cases has spiked so drastically. On the street, Fentanyl is referred to as: Goodfellas, Friend, Apache, jackpot, murder 8 and Tango & Cash, China girl, China white, dance fever, Great Bear, or He-Man.

Because it is so potent, Fentanyl is highly addictive. Even when it is prescribed by a doctor, the patient can experience serious symptoms of withdrawal. Patients who become addicted typically experience the following: body aches, muscle, or bone pain, vomiting or diarrhea, cold flashes, anxiety, depression, dry mouth, uncontrollable movements in the body, swelling of your extremities, weight loss, or severe cravings for the drug, to name a few.

Fentanyl stays in your system for 1-3 days. There are test strips you can use to filter if your substance has traces of Fentanyl however, if you suspect someone you know is overdosing, you should act quickly. According to the CDC, if you suspect someone is overdosing on Fentanyl, you should do the following:

  1. Call 911
  2. Administer Narcan or Naloxone if you have it
  3. Attempt to keep the person awake or breathing as best you can
  4. Make sure the person is laying on their side to prevent choking
  5. Do not leave the person until emergency personnel arrive

The CDC also advises that most states have laws that protect the person calling for help therefore you should never avoid calling for help due to fear of repercussions.

 

Symptoms of an overdose from Fentanyl include but are not limited to:

  • Disorientation
  • Pain in your chest
  • Trouble breathing/gurgling
  • Blue complexion/lips
  • Seizures
  • Passing out

When first responders are called due to a Fentanyl overdose, they commonly use a medication called Naloxone (Narcan) to reverse the effects of the drug.  Narcan can be obtained at a pharmacy without prescription and often comes as a nasal spray or preloaded syringe.  It is not unheard of for people to have Narcan in homes where they suspect someone is abusing the drug.

Like other opioids, Fentanyl has its own effects on the body.  Many report feeling euphoria, sedation, confusion, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, disorientation, dilatated pupils, shortness of breath and in some urinary retention.

 

What is Narcan Exactly?

Narcan is a medication approved by the FDA, patented in NY in the 60’s, that was designed to reverse the effect of an overdose.  It was created with the intention to treat constipation in opioid users. When a patient is showing symptoms of an overdose, you can administer Narcan as a quick response. Narcan is given as a nasal spray, intramuscular, or into the vein.

If the person experiencing the overdose is non-responsive, spray Narcan into their nose, and begin administering CPR.  Side effects of Narcan can include pain or dryness in the nose or perhaps a stuffy nose. According to Steve Wolfe, General Manager at Spaulding Decon Tampa, most first responders have Narcan handy. “For us as a trauma remediation contractor, it is standard practice for us to carry Narcan.

We bring it as a precaution and part of our PPE (personal protective equipment).  A responsible contractor needs to be prepared, as we do not know if we will encounter Fentanyl.  It is a best practice for us to always carry it”.  Spaulding Decon is a remediation company that specializes in drug lab clean-up, suicides, unattended deaths, crime scenes, water damage, rodent cleanup, mold remediation and more.  Visit www.crimescenecleaning.com for more information on clean-up protocol.

We spoke with Benjamin Bueno who is the COO of Rock Recovery Center in Florida, and host of Real Recovery Talk Podcast, for behind-the-scenes details about Fentanyl and its effects on addicts. According to Ben there are roughly over 30 types of FDA registered Fentanyl.  CAR is the name of the most potent street Fentanyl, which is produced in China. When we asked Ben about the potency of CAR, he said “It is more potent than what hospitals use to put people under for surgery.”  He explained that even people who have developed a high tolerance for Fentanyl use are overdosing.

“It is used as an elephant tranquilizer in South-East Asia”, said Ben. He went on to explain that over the last 10 years there has been a shift on the streets from Heroine use to Fentanyl use.  Fentanyl is much more cost efficient to produce and therefore more profitable, especially since its effects don’t last a very long time at all.  An amount equating to 2-3 grains of salt is enough to kill a non-addict who has encounter this drug, that is how potent and dangerous it is. Fentanyl addicts need to be weaned off slowly with a drug called Buprenorphine, which is a prescription drug.  cutting off Fentanyl cold turkey is dangerous and extremely uncomfortable due to its withdrawal effects.  Long term effects of Fentanyl use include issues with cognitive function, emotional regulation, decision making.

Ben told us that getting sober requires a strong will and a lot of work from the individual, but that it is in fact possible.   Sadly, many people are unable to go into treatment for lack of funding and resources.  Ben described using CAR as “playing Russian roulette”, he said “ your next high could kill you in a matter of minutes”. He went on to tell us about friends he had recently lost due to Fentanyl use.  If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction visit https://rockrecoverycenter.com/ for treatment options.  You can also visit Benjamins podcast for useful resources and tips on how to get or stay sober at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXePpkAu46J7fhlLJEu1F8Q/videos

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