If you are on probation or receiving urinalysis testing and are a cannabis user, you may have heard of synthetic cannabinoids being a way to pass drug tests while still providing similar effects to the cannabis plant. However, there are extreme health risks posed by synthetic cannabinoids, so much so that the state of New York has banned their use and sale, according to the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.
The dangers of synthetic cannabinoid use
Synthetic cannabinoids are now commonly understood to be much more dangerous than typical cannabis. Their consumption can cause many side effects that are not present with typical cannabis use, including hypertension, kidney failure, aggressive behavior, paranoia, anxiety, seizures, irritability, blood pressure irregularities and more. In the worse cases, synthetic cannabinoids can cause you to have psychotic episodes with full-blown hallucinations that may put you in dangerous and potentially life-threatening situations.
What are synthetic cannabinoids?
You may have seen synthetic cannabinoid products marketed as Mr. Smiley, Spice or K2, and they have been sold under many other names as well. Before their banning, they were often sold as “incense.” What they all have in common is that they are a dried plant that has had a liquid chemical compound with similar effects to THC sprayed on the leaves so that you can experience a high when smoking them.
Alternatives to synthetic cannabinoids
If you have a medical reason for using cannabis, you may be able to get a medical prescription. However, make sure you have an understanding with your employer or probation officer as to what is permissible, even under a state-approved medical license.
This article is informative and should not be considered to be legal advice.