When people think of illicit drugs they often imagine little baggies of white power or the passing of unmarked pills. While many parents are on the watch for these drugs, illicit substances can take many forms.
The Different Types of Drug-Laced Candy
Laced candies are rising in popularity and can range from chocolate bars to gummy bears. These sweet drugs are easily disguised, flavored, and not surprisingly, popular with the youth. Their seemingly innocuous form and colorful packaging make taking drugs more accessible and a lot less scary than other routes of administration like injection with a needle.
Not only can candy laced with drugs include everything from lollipops to Sour Patch Kids, but also the drugs inside the candy can vary.
Many people are familiar with pot candy or “edibles,” and in some places, these sweets are legal. The candy is often infused with both THC and CBD but can have varying effects on the body depending on the concentrations of the active ingredients as well as the strain of marijuana. Typically, THC candies and edibles are believed to create a stronger and more intense high than smoking pot.
These marijuana edibles also come in a wide variety of consumable products including cookies, brownies, gummies, or chocolate bars. For some people, getting these laced candies is as simple as popping into their local CBD shop, but THC-candies are also being sold illegally on the streets.
Although pot candies are popular, there have been reports of candies laced with drugs outside of just marijuana.
Although not as common, there have been chocolate bars and gummy candies laced with drugs like methamphetamine. A couple in Oregon was hospitalized a few years ago after unknowingly eating their child’s meth-laced Halloween candy.1 While this appeared more like an isolated incident, in Texas one drug bust led to the confiscation of meth-laced candies that were being marketed specifically to the youth and estimated to be worth around one million dollars total.2 The candies included meth-filled lollipops molded in the shape of popular fictional characters. Because meth is so addictive, these drugs could lead to dependence, and the user may eventually need professional methamphetamine addiction treatment.
Some other drug-laced candies have reportedly contained LSD, a hallucinogenic drug. One Colorado man was arrested a few years ago for allegedly mailing LSD-laced gummy bears and chocolate across the country.3 Outside of the United States, Colombia police also busted a drug trafficking group for a large stash of LSD-candy pacifiers.4
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Laced Candy Dangers
Although they seem harmless on the outside, there are many dangers of drug-laced candy.
One of the biggest dangers of laced candy is the fact that a lot of it is not regulated. Outside of THC-infused candies sold at legitimate dispensaries, candy drugs are being created illegally. The potencies of the drug as well as the makeup of these drug-laced treats can vary drastically from one source to the next. Different batches from the same source may also be considerably different.
Because of these irregularities, people can not always be sure how much of a drug they are getting in one serving let alone what drugs they are consuming. The result may be that the user consumes more than they intended or a substance they weren’t aware of.
Another big problem with drug-laced candy is its innocent look. People using them may take more than they should because they look so harmless. With regular use, this could lead to addiction, and the person may end up needing to go to a drug rehab. In other serious cases, drug-laced candies could lead to overdose. The user may also mix drug-laced candies with other drugs or alcohol. This polysubstance use may lead to unforeseen and dangerous side effects.
There is also the possibility that these laced candies could fall into the wrong hands. Gummy candies laced with drugs often look the same as regular gummy candies. If these treats are left out, young children could consume them and in dangerous amounts.
If you are a parent, reports of candies laced with drugs are concerning. One way to help prevent drug use in adolescence is to educate your children on the dangers of these types of substances regardless of their form. If you have taken drug-laced candies yourself and find that you may be becoming addicted to them, get help.
At Vertava Health Ohio, we help people 18 and older move past their substance use and start building a foundation for a happier and healthier future. Learn more by contacting us today.