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  • Writer's pictureDahlia Foundation

Synthetic cannabinoids

Chemicals designed to act like the main psychoactive chemical in cannabis

Also called:

  • Amsterdam Gold

  • Annihilation

  • Black Mamba

  • Blue Cheese

  • Bombay Blue Extreme

  • Clockwork Orange

  • Devil's Weed

  • Ecsess

  • Exodus Damnation

  • K2

  • Mary Joy

  • Spice

  • Tai High Hawaiian Haze

  • X

What does it look like?

In their pure form, synthetic cannabinoids are either solids or oils. They are then added to dried herbs, vegetable matter or plant cuttings to make a smoking mixture (so that it looks more like real herbal cannabis). The most commonly known synthetic cannabinoid is Spice. The smoking mixtures are packaged in small, often colourful sachets with labels describing the contents as incense or herbal smoking mixture, and usually stating 'not for human consumption'. There are many different names given to herbal smoking mixtures, some of the most common are listed in the 'Also called' section at the top of the page. There are many different brand names for smoking mixtures, but it is not uncommon for different brands to contain the same synthetic cannabinoids.

Can you get addicted?

Research suggests that you can become dependent on synthetic cannabinoids, especially if you use them regularly. Whether or not you’re dependent will be influenced by a number of factors, including how long you've been using it, how much you use and whether you are just more prone to becoming dependent. If you have used synthetic cannabinoids regularly you could find it difficult to stop using and you might experience psychological and physical withdrawals when you do stop. The withdrawals can include cravings for synthetic cannabinoids, irritability, mood changes, loss of appetite, weight loss, difficulty sleeping and even sweating, shaking and diarrhoea.

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