Synthetic cannabinoids: Risks, side-effects and all you need to know

Synthetic cannabinoids: Risks, side-effects and all you need to know
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For thousands of years, humans have been using cannabis to treat a myriad of health conditions, from arthritis to depression. In fact, some of the earliest evidence of cannabis use can be traced back 2500 years. In modern times, thanks to ongoing scientific research, we understand cannabis much better, and now know that it is the cannabinoids in the plant that make it special. And although research is still ongoing and no factual claims can be made about the effects of cannabinoids such as CBD and THC, many people from diverse backgrounds swear by it. However, with the popularity of cannabinoids growing, some have seen it as an opportunity to make money by creating synthetic cannabinoids. But what are synthetic cannabinoids, and should you be avoiding them? What are synthetic cannabinoids? Synthetic cannabinoids are chemicals designed to mimic the effects of cannabis, particularly that of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive compound in cannabis. However, “synthetic cannabinoids” aren’t a synthetic form of cannabis, and don’t actually have the same effects as THC. Unlike cannabis, they produce a slew of adverse effects. The correct term for them are synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists (SCRAs), but the misleading “synthetic cannabinoids” is the common term people use to describe these chemicals. Often advertised as herbal incense, herbal smoking mixtures or aphrodisiac tea, synthetic cannabinoids have been sold online as early as 2004. Dealers market them under many different names, such as: Spice K2 Skunk Kronic Northern Lights Bombay Blue Kaos Black Mamba Not all synthetic cannabinoids are equal. Pure powder form is much safer than pre-mixed blends such as Spice, which can easily lead to an overdose due to the fact that the products do not list individual chemicals and dosages. How to take synthetic cannabinoids Usually available in powder form, these chemicals are mixed with…

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