What is Flakka?

Flakka is a synthetic street drug that is comparable to bath salts, but contains a new chemical called alpha-pyrrolidinopentiophenone (alpha-PVP). Some use flakka because it provides a heightened sense of awareness, stimulation, and more energy. Flakka is an extremely dangerous drug. It produces terrifying side effects and can lead to overdose and death.

Side Effects of Flakka

John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP, medical author for Medicinenet on the signs and symptoms of flakka abuse, indicates that one of the side effects of flakka is extreme agitation. When a person experiences this agitation due to flakka use, he or she can experience an excited delirium, which is a medical emergency. In the excited delirium state, restrained patients struggle to free themselves, scream, flail, and can even have seizures.

The poor and homeless are at higher risk of using flakka due to its low cost. Flakka has many bad side effects, mostly changes in behavior or mood. Even slight overdoses of flakka can cause elevated heart rate, extreme agitation, jerking muscle movements, zombie-like behavior, delirious thoughts, hyperstimulation, hallucinations, delusions of super-human strength, and profound paranoia.

Just one dose of flakka that is smoked, swallowed or snorted can give a person a potent but momentary rush, and then turn them into a paranoid zombie with superhuman strength and off-the-charts vital signs. (Tracy Connor, Cynthia McFadden, and Aliza Nadi, NBC News, 2015).

Those who use flakka are a threat to themselves, the people around them, and the first responders who are trying to help them. Sometimes it takes multiple people to restrain and sedate a person experiencing these side effects. Rescue crews and emergency staff need to administer sedatives to calm the person and ensure safety.

Treatment for Addiction

When we are actively addicted, recovery can seem impossible. While there is no cure for addiction, it is treatable and your brain can learn how to function without the control of drugs or alcohol. When pursuing sobriety, your brain will need time to heal as it learns to function normally, without the control of toxic substances.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction or a substance use disorder, get help today. Treatment can be tailored to everyone’s unique needs. Addiction is a disease that cannot be cured but can be managed with treatment. Sometimes stigma of addiction and psychiatric disorders prevents people from getting the help they desperately need. Do not be afraid to ask for help. Once you are in recovery from addiction or a substance use disorder, you can go on to live a healthy, fulfilling, new lifestyle in sobriety.


Daylight Recovery Services takes a holistic approach to substance abuse and co-occurring disorder treatment to address the physical, psychological, and spiritual facets of addiction and recovery. We ensure clients emerge from our facility with the proper tools and confidence in their ability to lead a healthy, enjoyable life. If you or someone you love is ready to break free of the bondage of addiction, contact one of our recovery experts today at 1-833-2DAYLIGHT.