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Trendy New Drugs Get Cuter By the Minute

Your kids can buy Lazy Cakes and synthetic marijuana over the counter. Find out out why these "treats" are so dangerous.

Cute little cake snacks aren't what they appear to be. Brownies laced with high concentrations of sleep inducing melatonin are available at Fred's Super Dollar in Jasper. Let's hope they don't make their way to Cumming.

Known as Lazy Cakes, these melatonin-laced snacks are by no means as innocent as they sound. They are cleverly packaged, specifically marketed to young people and sold right at the checkout counter in most cases. 

I wonder how many unsuspecting teen drivers are popping these brownies into their mouths before getting behind the wheel of a car.

Even more harmful are "spice" and "bath-salts" which are available to kids 18 and up at gas stations all over Forsyth County. 

Spice is the slang term for synthetic drugs sold in colorful packaging to draw the interest of young people who think they are safe alternatives to experimenting with drugs.

"Most people turn to mainstream drugs. The scary thing about these herbal synthetics is that people in their teens and 20's think they are a safe way to test the waters," says Capt. Tim House with the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office. "What they don't realize is that the side effects are just as damaging and these drugs are as addictive as mainstream drugs."

In June of 2010, spice containing one of six illegal compounds was officially mandated as Schedule 1 drugs which are considered a felony. The problem is that the companies that manufacture these drugs are not mandated to list the ingredients. Additionally the "companies" that manufacture these drugs are often vague, consisting of an individuals first name.

"These drugs are new, they're dangerous and it's going to be a blurry line in terms of legality until drug manufacturers are required to list specific ingredients on the packaging," says Capt. House.

Bath salts is the slang term used for mephedrones. These drugs are marketed and sold in gas stations and online under trendy names purposely aligned with marijuana such as Red Dawn, Vanilla Sky and K2 Blonde.

Reactions to these drugs can be extremely violent and often deliver a three-day high that's anything but pleasant.

Talk to your kids, be the authority on these new drugs on the rise as the latest trend for a false impression of safe experimenting.

"Be involved, pay attention and explain that this stuff is scary as heck," says Capt. House who adds that Forsyth County deputies and investigators are working as quickly as possible to aggressively combat these drugs because of their potential for danger and abuse.

Next time you're at the gas station and some cute little packages of something "herbal" catch your eye behind the counter (or within arm's reach), know that those packs are full of an arsenal of questionable compounds. Tell your kids these drugs are as dangerous as any other illegal substance.

jeff May 10, 2011 at 05:51 PM
Kristen. Thanks for alerting parents to this. This is the community action that people need. Myteensavers counselors believe that we not only need to educate children about these types of products, but educate the parents. Kids are well aware of how to find drugs, and what drugs they can get at what cost. It's whether or not they choose to use. Myteensavers advocates that parents use home drug test kit. The Teensavers Home Drug Test Kit tests for THC and 11 other substances. The biggest problem nowadays with kids is prescription drugs. Parents need to also monitor their medicine cabinets and dispose of unused, unwanted, or expired medicines. But these herbal synthetic substances are scary because there is no reliable OTC test for these substances. Great article!
Kristen Berry May 10, 2011 at 08:11 PM
Thanks Jeff, this was a difficult article to write as there is so much information to cover about the nuances and effects of these contemporary drug choices. My column only barley skims the surface, but I sure hope parents are reading it to get an idea of what's out there at the local gas stations and in their own medicine cabinets. It's scary stuff and I think I'll revisit the topic again to keep awareness going.
jeff May 10, 2011 at 09:01 PM
Kristen, it's clear this comes from the heart. Parents need to have a willingness to listen. It's people like you that help push these teen substance secrets into the limelight. If the government won't ban them, we need to publicize their harm! If you'd ever like to do a story on home drug testing, since it's a polarizing topic, I'd be happy to answer any of your questions about the Teensavers Home Drug Test Kit. Thank you again!
Kristen Berry May 11, 2011 at 12:00 PM
Thanks Jeff, Can you send me an e-mail so we will have contact?
George May 16, 2011 at 11:20 AM
Says clearly on the package that they are not intended for children. Melatonin is a NATURAL chemical made in the human brain which assists in sleep. It is NOT a drug! It is also known to assist in defense against cancer. People need to get educated and stop trying to ban things they do not understand!
Kristen Berry May 16, 2011 at 05:02 PM
George, We are not talking about the natural melatonin produced in the pineal gland of the human brain. The article refers to the synthetic form which is produced as a sleep-aid drug from chemical compounds and therefore raises concerns for its safety in easily-accessed food products such as Lazy Cakes. And---for the clear intentions stated on the packs.... If they aren't intended for children to use, they should not be marketed with colorful child-appeal packaging and sold at the checkout counter next to the candy. Doing so is a typical anomaly that negates, diminishes and contradicts the importance of the intentions. People, especially young ones, don't always take the time to read product intentions, warnings and ingredients. Finally... George, My first and foremost intention in writing that piece is to keep our young people safe from things they don't fully understand. It is my sincere hope to instill that same sentiment in my readers.
Kristen Berry May 23, 2011 at 12:24 PM
CBS news reports several states banning Lazy Cakes and other relaxation foods containing melatonin.

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