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Designer Drug Use Soaring

Designer Drugs Around the Law

Designer drugs are created and marketed to avoid drug laws, made up of chemical structures that are modified from existing drugs yet still are able to produce similar effects.[1] Sold on the black market, designer drugs are not subject to regulations.1 Recently, the United Nations (UN) released a statement regarding their concern for the growing rate of abuse in the past few years.[2]

The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) released an annual report stating, “In recent years, there has been an unprecedented surge in the abuse of new psychoactive substances.”2

DesignerThousands of Designer Drugs Exist

This worried the UN. In fact, between 2000 and 2005, there had been at least five notifications of new substances per year.2 However, thousands of designer drugs exist—an overwhelming amount to take control of.2 Examples include LSD, ecstasy, anabolic steroids, K2 or “spice”, and bath salts.

With the increase in these substances, there has been an increase in the number of hospitalizations, calls to poison control centers, and deaths.2 There are 16 new drugs being monitored in Europe and 51 in Japan.[3] Also, the United States continues to be the number one destination for illegal drugs, and Canada is the prime manufacturer for the world’s synthetic drugs.3 Europe is the world’s largest market for opiates, and Central America is number one for cocaine use.3 This only skims the surface.

Crack Down on Designer Drugs

Therefore, the UN is calling for governments to increase efforts to crack down on designer drug use by monitoring trends and making substances illegal as fast as possible.3


[1] Bellum, Sara. “Real Teens Ask: What Are Designer Drugs | NIDA for Teens.” NIDA for Teens. National Institute on Drug Abuse, 17 Mar. 2011. Web. 11 Mar. 2013. <http://teens.drugabuse.gov/blog/post/real-teens-ask-what-are-designer-drugs>.

[2] France-PresseTuesday, Agence. “Report: ‘Designer drug’ use, abuse and production surging.” The Raw Story. Raw Story Media, Inc., 5 Mar. 2013. Web. 11 Mar. 2013. <http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/03/05/report-designer-drug-use-abuse-and-production-surging/>.

[3] Oleksyn, Veronika. “Designer Drug Use Out Of Control, Group Says.” The Huffington Post. HPMG News, 2 Mar. 2011. Web. 11 Mar. 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/03/02/designer-drugs-crackdown_n_830225.html. Designer.

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