The party is officially over for bath salts.
New York State Health Commissioner Nirav Sha announced Monday that he is banning the dangerous amphetamine-type substances marketed as bath salts, which, up until now, were sold over the counter in some New York City head shops and convenience stores.
“This is a trend of designer drugs,” said Dr. Stephen Ross, director of the NYU Langone Center of Excellence in Addiction. “Underground chemists create these dangerous compounds and slap on ‘not for human consumption’ and get around the law.”
Despite their name, these synthetic drugs were never meant for the tub and were created solely for the purpose of getting high, he said.
Similar to other amphetamines, the drug can cause hallucinations, paranoia, delusions, suicidal thoughts and violent behavior.
The drugs can be fatal and are known to cause heart attacks, strokes and seizures. Ross said the majority of patients he’s seen were men between the ages of 18 and 25.
“Last month a man came in hearing voices, thinking bugs were crawling on his skin,” Ross said. “He was psychotic.”
An employee at the East Village head shop Addiction told Metro they used to sell bath salts, but stopped once they realized they would be banned.