Have you ever noticed how life is full of cycles? Every so often, if you pay attention, you’ll notice the little things that happen seem to disappear and re-appear over time. Almost as if they never really go away. In that case, I guess it’s true what they say “what comes around goes around”. It may not come back exactly as it was before, but it still makes an appearance. It may look like something else because of different packaging, but don’t be fooled whenever drugs of abuse are involved. Very rarely does a new drug show up on the scene. More than most, it’s just a new way to make the same old thing. In other words, what’s old is new again.
A drug called NBOMe that goes by the nicknames N-Bomb, 25i, 25B, 25C, or Smiles, is one of the top five most prevalent drugs facing youth today, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. N-Bomb (as it’s called) is a hallucinogen similar to a dangerous combination of Ecstasy (MDMA) and LSD, one of the most potent mood-changing chemicals. Originally deriving from the Mescaline, (a hallucinogen coming from the small cactus plants known as Peyote and San Pedro), this drug has linked to several incidents in the past few years. It’s also where most of the side effects come from that people experience.
Teenagers have been known to use the version known as 25i-NBOMe (also known as Cimbi-5 or 25I), which is considered an alternative to LSD because of its potency (making it extremely hazardous to unsuspecting users) and since it has a much lower cost than most other psychedelics, it’s more popular and affordable. The very small amount needed to achieve a unique “high” feeling is what makes 25I-NBOMe the psychedelic drug of choice for many young people. Going on that same note also means that it’s very easy to accidentally overdose. Cases have been reported of young people overdosing from a single drop of this drug. A major fear is that as the drug becomes more popular, there will likely be more overdoses.
The version 25i-NBOMe, itself, was actually developed as a research chemical in 2003 but had no recorded history of use by people until it first became available online in 2010. 25i-NBOMe is not generally sold in commercial retail environments but can be bought on the Internet for subsequent resale. Other slight variations of the drug include 25C-NBOMe and 25B-NBOMe, which is commonly ingested by a nasal spray, liquid, powder, laced on edible items, injection (intravenous and intramuscular), rectal, smoking, and soaked onto blotter papers. Abuse of these substances has also been connected to serious health effects. Some noted physical/behavioral symptoms of someone under the influence include:
- Confusion/scrambled communication
- Tunnel vision
- Nausea and vomiting
- Paranoia, fear, and panic
- Unwanted and overwhelming feelings or life-changing spiritual experiences
- Shaking, tremors, seizure
Users say the effects of the drug can last for hours or up to days after. Although LSD and NBOMe are similar, they both have their differences according to the Sedgwick County Regional Forensic Science Center. “NBOMe has different chemicals that bind to the same receptor and will cause similar types of activity as LSD does,” said Dr. Timothy Rohrig, Director of SCRFSC. “One big difference between the N-Bomb compounds and some of these synthetic cannabinoids is that they can put you in hazardous situations where you might run out in front of a car and get hit or something like that, the N-Bomb compounds can cause overt lethal toxicity.”
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) implicates it to the deaths of at least 14 people in at least 11 states. Unfortunately, access to drugs like this are not only available on the internet, but in some stores such as head shops, tobacco shops, adult stores, convenience stores, and gas stations. They try to entice you with their shiny plastic packaging with bright logos. You might even find some marketed as incense or potpourri, but there is a change spreading across the country as a lot of states are now introducing legislation aimed at penalizing owners/operators of local businesses that sell these harmful synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones. A few of these stations are:
- Indiana – According to state law, stores selling these drugs face penalties including the loss of their retail business certificates for one year. They must also bear the cost of court and laboratory testing of the substances by the state.
- Tennessee – A law was passed in 2012 making the sale of synthetic cannabinoids a felony and businesses accused of selling the product can be padlocked as public nuisances.
- Georgia – Passed a law that allows categories of synthetic drugs to be banned even before the specific compound is added to the Georgia code.
Research has yet to determine if 25I-NBOMe is addictive, although other drugs that have acted in identical to the serotonin receptors have potential to create a physical dependence. Yet, most users of these psychedelic drugs do not take them often enough to create any sort of dependence. In 2013, the US Drug Enforcement Administration had responded in turn of the growing number of overdoses by adding versions of 25I-NBOMe to its list of Schedule I controlled substances (including 25I-NBOMe, 25C-NBOMe, & 25B-NBOMe). This means that people using this dangerous drug not only face serious health issues but will also face legal dangers, including arrest and imprisonment.
Abuses of NBOMe (along with its variations) have already been categorized as public health and safety issues both domestically and abroad. These substances are classified as primarily abused for their hallucinogenic-like effects and are often promoted as legal alternatives to ecstasy or lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). Unfortunately, there is not an on-the-spot drug test that can detect it in a biological specimen at this time, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). However, the donor’s urine or blood sample is sent to a lab, the facility can analyze it using GC/MS to find it.
All of NBOMe’s dangers along with the long-term effects have not been studied enough to be considered well-known. Even though it’s considered Synthetic LSD, it’s not easily detected with a standard drug test. Take no chances if you know someone who may be abusing this horrendous drug. Not only are they endangering you, but more importantly themselves. If you want to, you could have your employee or family member take one of the drug tests we have to offer to rule out any of the other suspicions you have. Speak with one of our friendly knowledgeable sales consultants about the drug testing kits available by calling (888) 404-0020 weekdays from 8 am to 4 pm or send us an email to [email protected] anytime.