The first drugs were likely discovered through accident and observation. As early humans tried different plant, animal, and mineral substances, they realized that some substances produced special medicinal effects. They were then able to use the substances that had beneficial effects to achieve desired results, and they passed their knowledge of these drugs from generation to generation.
This has not been the case with recreational drugs; with these, there has been a “fast track” to find new ways to create, distill and distribute highly addictive drugs for profit and gain. The latest addition to this race is the marijuana derivative called SHATTER.
Also called Butane Hash Oil (BHO), Shatter has a number of street names, including Honey Oil, Wax, Sap, and Budder, Shatter is still a relatively new marijuana concentrate that garnered its nicknames due to its brittle texture and color (although some call it Dabs because the drug is used by taking a small amount of the extract and “dabbing” it onto a heated surface and then inhaling the smoke.
Even more alarming than Shatter’s highly addictive properties, however, is the manufacturing process, in which a natural plant is mixed with a chemical which, in turn, can often yield literally explosive results. At its base level, Shatter is concentrated marijuana that is extracted through an extremely volatile chemical process.
Shatter contains the same psychoactive properties of marijuana in the form of THC, but is much more potent than marijuana in its traditional form, containing upwards of 60-80% THC (held up against the usual 20% found in everyday marijuana). Men and women who use Shatter get higher faster, but the effects – which range from intoxicating to intense – often include bouts of overwhelming paranoia, anxiety and even psychosis.
In order to create Shatter, butane is used to extract cannabinoids and terpenes from cannabis plant matter yielding an extremely potent type of cannabis concentrate, known as Butane Hash Oil (hence the nickname BHO). These chemical compounds are secreted by cannabis plants and interact with receptors in the brain to relieve pain while causing a sense of euphoria and relaxation. But careless home production efforts often lead to violent explosions, fires and fatalities which negate any potential positive benefits that can come from having a more concentrated dose of THC.
Frankly put, when you weigh-out the potential for loss of life, it is easy to see why Shatter production is still mostly illegal even where medical marijuana is legalized. Add into the equation the fact that, with unregulated production, Shatter also often ends up containing harmful trace chemicals from the process, it becomes easy to see how one would wind up using a drug that is more toxic than its plant-based counterpart.
But, it’s just pot, seems to be the rationale that has users smoking Shatter and then driving, even though users notoriously pass out or slip into drug-induced-psychosis shortly after partaking of the drug itself.
Regardless of the hyperbole, Marijuana is addictive. When compounded by a personality with a propensity for addiction, it becomes doubly-so. This is a problem because addicts will do whatever it takes to get high; even if that means endangering both their lives and the lives of those around them.
As with any new drug on the scene, Shatter is quickly gaining popularity, especially in states where marijuana has been legalized. Young people, attracted to the color, psychotropic effects and ritual of “shattering” the brittle product before smoking it have become fascinated with it. Bear in mind, when BHO is purchased illegally, it typically comes from makeshift labs which usually results in shoddy production – meaning that the butane can almost always be found in the still in the mixture.
A small amount of this is placed on a heated surface that is connected (again, usually) to a water pipe. This process is called “dabbing” and can be extremely dangerous, if only because of the fumes the addict is inhaling. This can result in side effects that include (but are not limited to) the following:
• A weakening of the immune system
• Extreme irritation of the airways causing narrowing and spasms
• Infections such as bronchitis, asthma and sinusitis
• Increased heart rate and blood pressure that can result in strokes
• Loss off concentration and a weakened ability to remember things (“wet brain”)
• Physical dependence on cannabis concentrates that lead to tolerance (meaning larger and more frequent doses of Shatter will be needed in order to feel the same effects)
• Sleep disorders or problems sleeping
The thinking is that, because it is derived from marijuana, Shatter should be taken lightly, but this is not the case. If you or a loved one is using or experimenting with Shatter, more serious issues may be in play and you may require deeper investigation. In matters where possible drug addiction are concerned, it often times behooves the reader to seek more information and, if necessary, appropriate, intelligent help.