Mental Health Monday–Zombie Apocalypse and Bath Salts


The news has been rife with stories of cannibalism lately. I’d say the subject itself isn’t new, but the gruesomeness and the occurrence of it in “civilized” cities is alarming to say the least. (Zombie experts have long warned of this day, I might add.)

Hmmm, maybe the Mayans are onto something.


Anywho, the dude in Florida (who attacked someone and ate parts of their face–YUCK and YIKES!) was high on something called “Bath salts.” Not to be confused with the fragrant, soothing stuff we add to our baths, bath salts (in the illicit substance world) is actually a concotion of synthetic stimulants including mephedrone, MDPV (methylenedioxypyrovalerone), and methylone.

Symptoms of intoxication include:

Agitation, paranoia, hallucinations, chest pain, high blood pressure, tacchycardia, and suicidality.

(Source: WebMD)

It’s been described as worse than LSD, PCP, esctasy, and meth.

I would readily agree.

We’ve seen cases of this locally and people intoxicated on this stuff (who end up on the inpatient psych unit) are often very difficult to keep calm and difficult to treat because our standard anti-psychotic medications are not as effective in treating bath salt induced psychosis.

Some of the people we’ve treated never recover (meaning they have chronic, severe symptoms of psychosis for months or longer after intoxication on bath salts) and end up being transferred to the longer term facility for prolonged inpatient care.



Photo credit

Mental Health Monday posts are for writing purposes only. They are not to be construed as medical treatment or advice.

If you have a writerly mental health question, please don’t hesitate to ask! 🙂

21 comments on “Mental Health Monday–Zombie Apocalypse and Bath Salts

  1. Krista Walsh says:

    Maybe not medical, but it sounds like pretty good “life advice” to me. Thank you for the information!

  2. Sheri Larsen says:

    Believe it or not, in my under-populated State of Maine, we’ve had a major outbreak of the use of these bath salts. It is the strangest thing, and so dangerous. It’s been pretty scary. I guess I have a hard time understand why people would even risk using them.

  3. Lynn Rush says:

    GREAT post! 🙂 Love that traffic sign. LOL!!!

  4. kendallgrey says:

    Thanks for the insights. I’d heard about the face-eating guy but didn’t know what exactly bath salts were.

  5. lexcade says:

    Thanks for clearing that up. I didn’t know what bath salts were either. I kept waiting for Walmart to keep them behind the pharmacy counter with all the meth-making drugs.

  6. Leigh Moore says:

    First, I had no idea this whole cannibalism thing was going on. Gross. Second, I’ve never even HEARD of bath salts!!! That’s crazy! Finally, all I can say is Why. But I always say that about most drugs. 😀 (The funny part was having the “Day of Demons” cover right there in the sidebar. Yikes! ;o)

  7. Okay, so if the concoction known as bath salts were to be released en masse in a population of a city, we’d have a zombie apocalypse, right? Like tons of cannibals running around eating people…scary stuff.

  8. Great post. I was wondering about what exactly “bath salts” were. And any post about zombies is super in my opinion. 🙂

  9. That’s gross. And pretty scary stuff.

  10. Linda Gray says:

    Thank you for the explanation. I’ve been wondering what the heck is going on, here, and did not know about bath salts. Yikes is right! (p.s. the zombie connection just throws this into mega-bizzaroland)

  11. Lydia K says:

    Well, all this cannabilism stuff has been totally weirding me out. The Bath Salts stuff is scary. I feel bad for ER docs and police officers. They’re on the front lines with dealing with the super human and horrible hallucinatory rages these abusers are experiencing.

  12. Vicki Tremper says:

    That stuff is scary. Why are the usual drugs not good enough?

  13. I missed that news. Ick. Just ick! I never could understand recreational drug usage. I’m not willing to give up control of my brain!

  14. Why? Why would people use this stuff? Ew! I know there’s no logical/reasonable explanation, but it boggles the mind!!!

  15. sandy says:

    Even more scary: we can’t do a UDS for the stuff, so we just have to hope for the best when these folks come in to our MH ER!

  16. How scary is this! I’m appalled that this kind of stuff happens in real life, yet the writer in me sees the potential.

  17. I’m with Sheri and Vicki and Lynda: what happened to all the other, relatively safer drugs? I would love to know what the decision process is before you take this stuff.

    Super gross follow-up: apparently some guy on bath salts, when confronted by police, pulled out his own intestines and threw them. It seems you are hardly in your own body when you’re on the stuff.

    Elizabeth Twist: Writer, Plague Enthusiast

  18. Sounds like somebody is saying the China Lake trigger words too much these days… Another great post. Disturbing about the drug, but then truth is always stranger than fiction.

  19. says:

    I have a roommate who started taking bath salts, although for a while hid it from his friends and family, I noticed a BIG difference in his behavior, he had taken it for months before i caught on to what he was doing, and in LARGE amounts. He said he was taking it to keep up at work….
    One day he came home and was talking to the walls…Then biting his lips, and grinding his teeth..just starring off into space, very agitated like.
    Then began to pass out standing up….
    Totally different person..
    I told him to go sleep it off, he then slept for 2 days straight, just when i thought he would be over it, he was still the same way.
    I was hoping for a fully recovered friend, but a year later… He is still not the same….Still talking to himself all the time… destructive behavior that lost him his job, inability to focus, passes out all the time, grinds teeth, and acting like a rebellious teenager, lots of anger . It is almost like I have became a mother to a 34 year old.
    The person we all once knew is completely vanished into a human train wreck.
    I was being hopeful that he would fully recover, but now I am losing all hope.
    How do you let go of someone you care a lot about, but he himself does not care about his life or others?
    During this process he lost his house, his truck, his job, and his friends…And still believes nothing is wrong.
    He makes me nervous, he bulges his eyes out when he talks, and grinds his teeth…
    I am lost……

  20. says:

    I don’t know how to help him… I told him to see a doctor but he insists nothing is wrong with his behavior….He is still smart to some degree…But have lost interest in everything…He can hold a conversation but most is exaggerated, or quite off the subject or he hums to himself and bouncing his head as if he is listening to music… He tends to act child like, started hording little things in his pockets, like bottle caps, pens from all over the house, string, rocks from outside.. weird stuff. taking things that don’t belong to him, and lies quite often, I am starting to think he believes his own lies. It’s strange He just began to stand for long periods of time in front of mirrors
    It’s crazy that people do this to themselves…
    My advice to anyone considering this drug is….(You have a lot to lose, even yourself and the people you care about).

    • lbdiamond says:

      I’m so sorry that your friend has tumbled into the destructive world of bath salts. I think you’re doing a good job by being supportive and recommending he get treatment. Just be sure to keep yourself safe!

      Thank you for sharing your story. Best of luck to you and your friend.

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