What to Know About Designer Drugs

Over the past few decades, there has been an increase in the emergence of new drugs. While some drugs such as marijuana and cocaine are made from naturally-occurring plants, newer drugs are created synthetically in a lab with the intention of altering the mind in new ways.

While anyone can find themselves addicted to these substances, due to the environments in which they are most present, designer drugs are often used by younger generations.

They’re Made in Labs

Designer drugs are made in illegal labs by using chemistry to change the properties of natural plants. This presents even more dangerous risks than many natural drugs since these drugs can often be unpredictable in terms of what is in them and how potent they are. Designer drugs can also be laced with other substances— for example, MDMA can also contain ketamine.

They’re Popular in Party Scenes

Since they produce feelings of euphoria or psychological and physical stimulation, many designer drugs are popular among party and festival scenes. Some of the most common drugs found in these environments include:


Popular in club scenes, this drug can give users a euphoric feeling while heightening one’s sensitivity to the effects of lights and music. MDMA can be known as “ecstasy” or “molly,” amongst other things.


This drug, often referred to as “speed” or “crank”, is often used to increase a user’s endurance and stamina, while also serving as an aphrodisiac. Young adults feel as though they can continue staying active for longer periods of time.


Commonly known as “Special K”, this drug acts as a sedative or gives a user an intense hallucinatory experience.


Although it has a reputation for being a “safer” alternative to other designer drugs, this synthetic stimulant is designed to give a user euphoric feelings. It can also inhibit a person’s decision-making abilities, often leading them to try more dangerous drugs.


This synthetic hallucinogen aims to greatly distort a user’s perception and cause intense hallucinations. Since a user is often not able to tell reality from a trip, they can find themselves in very dangerous situations while using LSD.

There are Dangerous Side Effects

While each designer drug can have different initial effects on young adults who are using them, there are specific short-term and long-term effects on users as well.

Short-term effects can include:

  • Elevated body temperature

  • Abnormal or increased heartbeat

  • Dehydration

  • Chills or profuse sweating

Long-term effects can include:

  • Mood disturbances

  • Psychosis

  • Respiratory issues

  • Vascular collapse

  • Seizures

If you or a loved one struggles with drug abuse, turn to the experts at Silvermist Recovery Center. The young adult addiction rehab treatment program at Silvermist is built to combat the disproportionate number of young adults who have fallen into addiction and are at great risk. It is time to break free from addiction. Call us today at (724) 268-4858 or complete an online form to get help.