Bath Salt Addiction and Abuse

Learn about the causes, side effects, symptoms, and treatment methods available for treating bath salt addiction.

Dangers of Bath Salts

The dangers of bath salts are often grossly underestimated. Bath salts are a synthetic drug that is highly addictive and can be extremely dangerous. Bath salt abuse can lead to several harmful consequences, including addiction, overdose, and even death. If you or someone you know is struggling with bath salt addiction or abuse, please seek professional help immediately. There is hope for recovery, and it is essential to get help as soon as possible.

Bath Salt Addiction


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What Are Bath Salts?

Bath salts, or synthetic cathinones, belong to a class of drugs manufactured with laboratory-made chemicals. The drug is usually a brown or white crystal-like powder. The chemicals in bath salts are similar in structure to cathinone, a stimulant naturally derived from the khat plant found in East Africa or Southern Arabia. Nonetheless, lab-made cathinones are much stronger and more harmful than natural cathinones.

Are Bath Salts Addictive?

Research shows that synthetic cathinones bath salts are highly addictive. So, individuals experience a strong urge to use bath salts again after trying the drug.

What Is Bath Salt Addiction?

Bath salt addiction occurs when the body becomes physically or psychologically dependent on the substance. It’s essential to remember that bath salt addiction is a treatable chronic medical disease, not a moral weakness or failure.

Bath Salt Addiction Statistics

According to a study conducted by New York University, approximately 1% of teens in the United States have tried bath salts, also known as Flakka. In the United States in 2011, 20,000 emergency room visits were related to bath salts.

Bath Salt Addiction Causes

Although it is important to remember that one singular factor cannot predict whether a person will develop a bath salt addiction, there are risk factors that can increase the likelihood.

Specific Triggers that Can Influence Bath Salt Consumption

Below, we will explore possible causes of bath salt drug addiction:

  • Social Triggers: Social triggers from a person’s environment, including social support, isolation, or economic status, can increase the likelihood of bath salt abuse.
  • Psychological Triggers: Along with genetics and environmental factors, psychological factors, including parental relationships, anxiety, depression, and boredom, may impact bath salts addiction.
  • Stress: Stress, physical or sexual abuse, and early exposure to drugs can significantly impact whether a person will develop a bath salt addiction.
  • Peer Pressure: Peer pressure is considered an environmental risk factor for addiction. If a person experiences peer pressure from friends or family to experiment with synthetic cathinones, they are more likely to experience bath salts addiction.

Bath Salt Addiction Symptoms and Side Effects

Signs, symptoms, and side effects can be seen and experienced in various ways, ranging from mild to severe and short-term to long-term.

Bath Salt Addiction Signs and Symptoms

People who struggle with bath salt addiction will typically display physical and psychological bath salt side effects. The following sections will explore the bath salt addiction symptoms.

Physical Signs of Bath Salt Abuse and Addiction

Physical signs of bath salt addiction can include:
  • Increased heart rate
  • Euphoria
  • Agitation
  • Sweating
  • Violent behavior
  • Vomiting
  • Irritability
  • Dizziness
  • Depression
  • Panic attacks
  • Lack of bodily control

Psychological Signs of Bath Salt Abuse and Addiction

Psychological signs of bath salt addiction can include:
  • Paranoia
  • Hallucinations
  • Feeling energetic
  • Nervousness

Bath Salts Addiction Side Effects

Bath salt abuse side effects are similar to other stimulant drugs, such as cocaine, MDMA, and amphetamines. However, common bath salts, including MDPV, are at least ten times more potent than cocaine. Keep reading to learn how long these effects last and the impact of bath salt abuse on the brain:

How Long Do Bath Salts Effects Last?

When someone swallows, smokes, snorts, or injects synthetic cathinones, the effects generally last approximately three to four hours.

Bath Salts Effect on the Brain

When a person develops a bath salt drug addiction, the brain’s cell communication, signaling processes, and neurotransmitters can be affected. Dopamine neurotransmitters begin to associate reward and pleasure with the drug, causing the brain’s reward system to become reliant on the drug to feel that same level of reward and pleasure.

Short-Term Effects of Bath Salts

Short-term effects of bath salts addiction include:

  • Agitation
  • Insomnia
  • Panic attacks
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Delusions
  • A distorted sense of reality
  • Mood disturbances

Long-Term Effects of Bath Salts

A long-term bath salt drug addiction can result in:
  • Lasting paranoia
  • Hallucinations
  • Drug-induced psychosis
  • Seizures
  • Heart problems

Bath Salt Overdose and Withdrawal

It’s crucial to familiarize oneself with the signs and symptoms of bath salt overdose and withdrawal, as it may save a life. The following sections will provide helpful information about bath salts abuse, so you know what to look for.

Dangers of Bath Salts Overdose

The addiction therapies at Concise Recovery can help you learn to identify and change negative thinking and develop new coping skills.

Bath Salts Overdose Symptoms

Bath salts effects and overdose symptoms may include:
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Chest pains
  • Vomiting
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Seizures
  • Stroke
  • Nosebleeds
  • Brain swelling
  • Heart attack
An overdose due to bath salts can also result in excited delirium. A person’s body becomes dehydrated during excited delirium, resulting in muscle tissue damage, kidney failure, and possibly death.

Bath Salts Withdrawal Symptoms

Signs of bath salts withdrawal can include:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Tremors
  • Problems sleeping
  • Paranoia
If you or someone you care about is experiencing bath salt addiction symptoms, including signs of withdrawal or overdose, seek medical attention immediately.

Treatment for Bath Salt Addiction and Abuse

Behavioral therapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy, contingency management, and motivational enhancement therapy, is an effective method for bath salt addiction treatment. Keep reading to learn more about the treatment of bath salt addiction.
Treatment for Bath Salt Addiction and Abuse

Bath Salt Addiction Treatment Options

Bath salt addiction treatment is vital to recovery and living a substance-free lifestyle. It’s essential to remember that effective treatment is tailored to meet individuals’ specific needs. The following outlines treatment options for a successful recovery from bath salt addiction:

Medical Detox

Detoxification is usually the first step in bath salt addiction treatment. Medical monitoring and supervision are critical during the withdrawal process due to the severity of potential withdrawal symptoms.

Residential Treatment Programs

Inpatient or residential bath salts rehab offers a twenty-four-hour structured environment for therapeutic healing. Residential programs can include year-long treatments, short-term residential treatment, and recovery housing.

Outpatient Programs

Outpatient behavioral treatment typically involves individual counseling and group therapy that requires attendance a few hours per day, three to six days per week. This type of addiction treatment can be helpful for individuals that may have difficulty attending residential treatment due to employment or other scheduling obstacles.


Aftercare, including sober support, is a critical component of lasting sobriety and recovery. After completing a treatment program, various continuing care options, such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA), are available to help individuals establish a sober support network for ongoing healing.

Find Help at Concise Recovery

Concise Recovery offers world-class addiction treatment, including detoxification, dual diagnosis, residential programs, and outpatient programs. Contact us today to break the cycle and overcome addiction!