With K2, also known as “spice,” causing problems and addictions, Gateway to Prevention and Recovery is hosting a community forum Jan. 15 to explore the dangers and consequences of synthetic drug use.
The latest craze hitting the streets are the synthetic drugs, and with names like “Spice,” “K2,” and “Dragonfly,” there are easily accessible and often sold at local convenience stores.
Cindy Satterfield, clinical coordinator at Gateway, said there are marketed as bath salts, potpourri, and incense, and they are often hard to detect by unsuspecting parents, employers, and educators.
“We’re seeing more and more use of it in our community,” Satterfield said, adding that they’ve had clients there who began using synthetic drugs in place of streets drugs, but became just as addicted.
“There are significant dangers,” she said, adding there’s a misrepresentation that they’re somehow not bad.
Use of the synthetic drugs can lead to many problems, with many teenagers go into kidney failure, she said.
“It’s marketed as innocent,” she said, adding it has more psychoactive ingredients and causes more serious health effects.
Whether it’s K2, or any type of drug, addictions are a problem for many in today’s world, Satterfield said.
“Addictions are on the rise — they have been for a long time,” she said.
As part of the program, those attending the program can learn about the new types of synthetic drugs on the market, their effects, chemical makeup and latest efforts by law enforcement combat this newest epidemic.
Guest speakers will include Scott Schaeffer, managing director, Oklahoma Poison Control Center, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and Detective Lawton Guthrie of District Six Drug Task Force and Violent Crime Division in Duncan.
The event is scheduled 6 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15 at St. Gregory’s University in the Patricia Flanagan Rockwood Center, Shawnee Community Room (2nd Floor), 1900 W. MacArthur Street, Shawnee.
Those wishing to attend are asked to RSVP by Jan. 9 to 405-273-1170, ext. 0 or by email at Rmcdowell@gatewaytoprevention.org.