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Sellers call it pretty names like Vanilla Sky, Blue Silk, Ivory Wave, and Bliss. The proper name for this designer drug, known most commonly as “bath salts,” would be poison – really, really bad poison. Fortunately, on June 1, North Carolina became one of at least 28 states that ban the incredibly deadly drugs.

Image: N.J. Division of Consumer Affairs

Bath salts are a man-made stimulant in a crystal or powder form that looks like bath powder. They can be smoked, snorted or injected. Their extremely violent and psychotic effect is hard to believe.

Some examples of actions of people high on these drugs:

  • A man in Mississippi stole a gun from a sheriff’s deputy and shot another deputy to death. He told officers that he had seen the devil and then broke through gurney straps when they tried to put him in an ambulance.
  • A boy in a suburb of New Orleans cut his throat in front of his family and then shot himself.
  • Near Seattle, a man killed his wife and then himself during a high-speed chase. Both were high on bath salts. Their five-year-old son was found dead at their home.
  • News reports relate plenty of other horrific acts caused by the use of this drug. Its physical effects on the users are devastating as well.
  • A police officer in Oklahoma responding to a report of a mass drug overdose found her son writhing on a front lawn and foaming at the mouth.
  • In Minnesota, 11 young people at taking the drug at a party were hospitalized; one died.
  • A man in Panama City, Fla., had his temperature go up to 107.5 degrees. “You could fry an egg on his forehead,” the emergency room doctor said.

“Some of these folks aren’t right for a long time,” said Karen E. Simone, director of the Northern New England Poison Center. “If you gave me a list of drugs that I wouldn’t want to touch, this would be at the top.”

Poison control centers have received more than 6,600 call about synthetic drugs this year. They are suspected in more than 20 deaths across the country. Even tiny amounts can result in an overdose.

Designer drugs are still available in many states, and on the Internet. One website selling the substance was visited 8,156 times during June.

Parents need to be aware of this deadly health threat, and the temptation it may pose. Don’t be afraid to have the conversation with your teenager. It’s better for them to get the true information from you, than a come-on from some website pushing “Bliss.”


  1. Gravatar for allison

    What is South Carolina's problem? Why is this stuf still on the market? Other states have banned this drug and made it illeagal yet my state still has the nerve to continue to allow the sale of it. How many people have to die or get hurt before SC gets smart? I'm both embarressed and ashamed to be a citizen of SC.

  2. Gravatar for Pierce Egerton
    Pierce Egerton

    Allison, I wish I had the answer to that question. The SC Legislature seems to be moving very slowly. Hopefully in the coming session SC lawmakers will move quickly to get this killer off the shelves.

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