For those who have developed an addiction to illegal drugs, drug rehab is often the only way they will recover. It is difficult to quit any chemical substance once a physical dependence has developed, but with professional help, it is possible.
Drug addiction can lead to many problems, both for the user and for those closest to him or her. As well as poor health and the risk of premature death for the addict, family members and friends will suffer from stress and other issues, including financial problems and the breakdown of relationships.
However, the effects of a particular drug epidemic ripping through the streets of Manchester are something that has never been seen before, according to youth support worker Julie Boyle.
Julie has been working with troubled teenagers and young adults in Manchester for the past six years and knows all there is to know about what is happening on the streets. However, she is shocked by what she is seeing when it comes to the effects of spice, the synthetic cannabinoid and former legal high.
Julie said, Weve had people gang raped, we have had people put on the game, we have had people trafficked because of it. Weve had people who have ended up on the sex offenders register. Ive had people wake up in an MRI scanner who didnt know how theyd got there. Ive had a lad recently been sectioned. Theres been a couple of cases where people have had to be brought back to life, who weve called an ambulance for when theyve actually died on the street. Ive had a young lad who weve just found out has contracted HIV as a direct result of it. Ive had a 22-year-old walk in the office, walk around the corner and have a heart attack.
Julie knows at least four people who have died as a result of the drug, which was banned by the Government in May 2016. However, since the ban, it appears as though the drug is just as available as it always was; although the version available on the streets is much more potent than it ever was.
According to Julie, around ninety-five per cent of the youngsters that she sees are taking spice. This could be around one hundred homeless and vulnerable teenagers at a time. She said that the sale of spice has moved from the internet and head shops to the streets along with other illegal substances.
A Manchester Evening News reporter spoke to a number of youngsters with experience of taking spice, with one young adult, Daniel saying, I got taken into hospital for 13 hours. Its that addictive and that horrible.
Craig, who is an ex-prisoner and former spice addict, said, Some guy told me it was legal weed. You cant tell a pothead its legal weed obviously, hes going to smoke it. I had a spliff and it took me out, it knocked me clean out. For about a week later I carried on smoking weed, but it werent touching me. I started rattling.
Liam, who is just seventeen, spoke of how he saw a friend die while taking spice. He said, Id just be sat there on my own, just slumped, unable to do anything. My mate died in a car park. The stuff you get in the bags is dead strong and he just snorted it. It must have killed him.
Julie described how she first heard about spice around three years ago but said that since then, the use of it has been like an explosion. She stated that because of the effects of the drug, many kids are ending up in dangerous situations. She went on to say that others end up taking unnecessary risks out of desperation for the drug, and many have no clue as to what they are doing while under the influence of it; lots of people wake up in hospital after the effects wear off with no recollection of how they got there.
Robert Ralphs, an academic who has been researching legal highs for many years, says that not much has changed since the ban on legal highs was introduced in 2016. Many believed that when the ban was introduced, the sale of legal highs would simply go underground. Robert said, Immediately after the ban, these predictions proved true, with street sellers setting up close to previous shop outlets and around city centre areas such as Piccadilly Gardens, around Manchester Cathedral and Urbis. The market has simply switched to the streets. It was already there anyway, since head shops are only open in the daytime. Now the crack and smack dealers are just dealing spice as well as class As around the clock.
He continued, All thats changed is that the price has gone up, the size of the deal has gone down, and its become more potent. Thats not because the chemicals themselves are stronger but because manufacturers are mixing different strains together.
Overcoming Addiction with Drug Rehab
Many individuals across the UK continue to struggle with addictions to former legal highs such as spice, but it is important to be aware that help is available. UK Rehab assists many people struggling to cope with destructive illnesses such as drug addiction.
We provide information on various providers of drug rehab in areas all over the country. If you or someone you love needs help to overcome an addiction, contact us here today. We are waiting to take your call.
Source: The terrifying truth about the Spice epidemic ripping through Manchester’s streets (Manchester Evening News)