Synthetic Marijuana: It Can Destroy Your Brain, Your Life
Synthetic Marijuana: How Harmful Can It Be?
Seventeen-year-old Texan, Emily Bauer, smoked synthetic marijuana, also known as “K2” or “Spice” on a daily basis. It wasn’t the real deal, right? So, how harmful could it be?
Very. In December 2012, Emily landed in the hospital and was placed on life support.1 Several strokes left her paralyzed and blind.1 She didn’t know where she was, but it was clear what put her there: her daily abuse of Spice.1 In fact, it destroyed a large portion of her brain.1 Causing an inflammation of blood vessels within her brain, this limited blood flow and oxygen, which caused her devastating condition.1
A New Life, Thanks to Synthetic Marijuana
The extent of the damage done will be a difficult hurdle to overcome. She is living a whole new life. While progress has been made, she will never be that same teenaged girl. Her experience has changed her both mentally and physically.
After months in the hospital, she has relearned how to sit and stand by herself.1 She lost her ability to walk, but she is currently relearning.1 Until she regains the full use of her legs, she gets around by wheelchair.1 The teen also needs assistance when going to the restroom and eating.1
However, she recently reached a milestone in her recovery—one her parent’s thought they’d never see—she returned to high school.1 Still, Emily will struggle, as she has plenty of things to relearn, including reading, writing, and basic addition and subtraction.1 She needs an aide to take notes for her, as she remains partially blind.1 Through it all, she harbors optimism.
She often wonders: Will my life return to normal? Will I be able to live on my own one day? For her, returning to school gives her hope and motivation.1 She has made it this far in her recovery, proving it is possible to overcome whatever obstacles her addiction has thrown her way.
A Message for Synthetic Marijuana Users
Emily’s message to others: “The high is great, but in the long run, it isn’t good. It’s no fun to be stuck in a wheelchair, to have to go to therapy, or possibly die.”1
*Recovery is possible—all you need to do is seek help.*
 Zdanowicz, C. (2013, September 11). Teen’s dramatic recovery after smoking synthetic marijuana . CNN.com. Retrieved September 17, 2013, from http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/11/health/synthetic-marijuana-bauer-update-irpt/index.html?hpt=he_c2