Drug Information

Bath Salts Brief Description:

The term “bath salts” refers to an emerging family of drugs containing one or more synthetic chemicals related to cathinone, an amphetamine-like stimulant found naturally in the Khat plant. The synthetic powder is sold legally online and in drug paraphernalia stores under a Knowledge about their precise chemical composition and short- and long-term effects is limited, yet the information we do have is worrisome and warrants a proactive stance to understand and minimize any potential dangers to the health of the public.

Fact Sheet Bath Salts           Fact Sheet Bath Salts Spanish             Fact Sheet Khat           Fact Sheet Khat Spanish

Street Names:   “Ivory Wave,” “Purple Wave,” “Red Dove,” “Blue Silk,” “Zoom,” “Bloom,” “Cloud Nine,” “Ocean Snow,” “Lunar Wave,” “Vanilla Sky,” “White Lightning,” “Scarface,” and “Hurricane Charlie.”


Effects:   A surge in dopamine in these circuits causes feelings of euphoria and increased activity. A similar surge of the transmitter norepinephrine can raise heart rate and blood pressure. Bath salts have been marketed as cheap (and until recently, legal—see Box) substitutes for those stimulants. A recent study found that MDPV—the most common synthetic cathinone found in the blood and urine of patients admitted to emergency departments after bath salts ingestion—raises brain dopamine in the same manner as cocaine but is at least 10 times more potent.  The hallucinatory effects often reported in users of bath salts are consistent with other drugs such as MDMA or LSD that raise levels of another neurotransmitter, serotonin. A recent analysis of the effects in rats of mephedrone and methylone showed that these drugs raised levels of serotonin in a manner similar to MDMA.


Club Drugs Brief Description:

Club drugs tend to be used by teenagers and young adults at bars, nightclubs, concerts, and parties. Club drugs include GHB, Rohypnol®, ketamine, and others. MDMA (Ecstasy), Methamphetamine, and LSD (Acid), are considered club drugs and are covered in their individual drug summaries.

Fact Sheet Ecstasy        Fact Sheet Ecstacy Spanish

 Street Names:  Special K, vitamin K, jet (ketamine); G, liquid ecstasy, soap (GHB); roofies (Rohypnol®).

Effects:  Club drugs have varying effects. Ketamine distorts perception and produces feelings of detachment from the environment and self, while GHB and rohypnol are sedating. GHB abuse can cause coma and seizures. High doses of ketamine can cause delirium and amnesia. Rohypnol® can incapacitate users and cause amnesia, and especially when mixed with alcohol, can be lethal.

Ecstasy Health Effects


Marijuana Brief Description:

Marijuana is the most commonly used illegal drug in the U.S. It is made up of dried parts of the Cannabis sativa hemp plant.

Fact Sheet Marijuana          Fact Sheet Marijuana Spanish            Fact Sheet Marijuana as Medicine          Fact Sheet Marijuana as Medicine Spanish

San Diego County Marijuana Use Data

Marijuana Will Limit Your Future

Marijuana’s Harmful Effects

Marijuana’s Harmful Effects Spanish

Butane/Honey Oil Fact Sheet

Street Names:  Pot, ganga, weed, grass, 420

Effects:  Short-term effects of marijuana use include euphoria, distorted perceptions, memory impairment, and difficulty thinking and solving problems.

 Marijuana Health Effects


Methamphetamine Brief Description:

Methamphetamine is a very addictive stimulant that is closely related to amphetamine. It is long lasting and toxic to dopamine nerve terminals in the central nervous system. It is a white, odorless, bitter-tasting powder taken orally or by snorting or injecting, or a rock “crystal” that is heated and smoked.

Fact Sheet Methamphetamine           Fact Sheet Methamphetamine Spanish

Street Names: Speed, meth, chalk, ice, crystal, glass


Effects:  Methamphetamine increases wakefulness and physical activity, produces rapid heart rate, irregular heartbeat, and increased blood pressure and body temperature. Long-term use can lead to mood disturbances, violent behavior, anxiety, confusion, insomnia, and severe dental problems. All users, but particularly those who inject the drug, risk infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis.


Methamphetamine Health Effects


Prescription Drug Abuse:

Prescription drug abuse means taking a prescription drug that is not prescribed for you, or taking it for reasons or in dosages other than as prescribed. Abuse of prescription drugs can produce serious health effects, including addiction.  Commonly abused classes of prescription drugs include opioids (for pain), central nervous system (CNS) depressants (for anxiety and sleep disorders), and stimulants (for ADHD and narcolepsy). Opioids include:  Fentanyl (Duragesic®),  Hydrocodone (Vicodin®),  Oxycodone (OxyContin®),  Oxymorphone (Opana®),  Propoxyphene (Darvon®) , Hydromorphone (Dilaudid®),  Meperidine (Demerol®),  Diphenoxylate (Lomotil®).  Central nervous system depressants include:  Pentobarbital sodium (Nembutal®),  Diazepam (Valium®),  Alprazolam (Xanax®).  Stimulants include:  Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine®),  Methylphenidate (Ritalin® and Concerta®),  Amphetamines (Adderall®)

Fact Sheet Rx Drugs and OTC          Fact Sheet Rx Drugs and OTC Spanish

Street Names:  oxy, cotton, blue, 40, 80 (OxyContin®)


Effects: Long-term use of opioids or central nervous system depressants can lead to physical dependence and addiction. Opioids can produce drowsiness, constipation and, depending on amount taken, can depress breathing. Central nervous system depressants slow down brain function; if combined with other medications that cause drowsiness or with alcohol, heart rate and respiration can slow down dangerously. Taken repeatedly or in high doses, stimulants can cause anxiety, paranoia, dangerously high body temperatures, irregular heartbeat, or seizures.

  Hydrocodone & Oxycodone Health Effects


Salvia Brief Description:

Salvia (Salvia divinorum) is an herb common to southern Mexico and Central and South America. The main active ingredient in Salvia, salvinorin A, is a potent activator of kappa opioid receptors in the brain. These receptors differ from those activated by the more commonly known opioids, such as heroin and morphine.

 Fact Sheet Salvia          Fact Sheet Salvia Spanish

Traditionally, S. divinorum has been ingested by chewing fresh leaves or by drinking their extracted juices. The dried leaves of S. divinorum can also be smoked as a joint, consumed in water pipes, or vaporized and inhaled. Although Salvia currently is not a drug regulated by the Controlled Substances Act, several States and countries have passed legislation to regulate its use. The Drug Enforcement Agency has listed Salvia as a drug of concern and is considering classifying it as a Schedule I drug, like LSD or marijuana.


Spice/ K-2 Brief Description:

“Spice” refers to a wide variety of herbal mixtures that produce experiences similar to marijuana (cannabis) and that are marketed as “safe,” legal alternatives to that drug. Sold under many names, and labeled “not for human consumption” — these products contain dried, shredded plant material and chemical additives that are responsible for their psychoactive (mind-altering) effects.

Fact Sheet Spice          Fact Sheet Spice Spanish

Street Names: K2, fake weed, Yucatan Fire, Skunk, Moon Rocks, and others


Effects:  Spice users report experiences similar to those produced by marijuana—elevated mood, relaxation, and altered perception—and in some cases the effects are even stronger than those of marijuana. Some users report psychotic effects like extreme anxiety, paranoia, and hallucinations.  Spice abusers who have been taken to Poison Control Centers report symptoms that include rapid heart rate, vomiting, agitation, confusion, and hallucinations. Spice can also raise blood pressure and cause reduced blood supply to the heart (myocardial ischemia), and in a few cases it has been associated with heart attacks. Regular users may experience withdrawal and addiction symptoms.



Fact Sheet Inhalants          Fact Sheet Inhalants Spanish

Multi - Drugs


Fact Sheet Heroin       Fact Sheet Heroin Spanish



Fact Sheet Cocaine     Fact Sheet Cocaine Spanish