New synthetic drug trend: 'Smiles' - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

New synthetic drug trend: 'Smiles'

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PHOENIX -

It's the latest designer drug quickly making its way into the hands of teenagers. Parents and police are on high alert.

Doctors refer to the drug as 2CL, but out on the street, teenagers know it as "smiles."

Little is known about its effects, but the drug has already been linked to two deaths in North Dakota, and experts are issuing a warning.

A new culture is forming -- a group of young adults are taking synthetic drugs because they're easier to get than natural drugs.

Smiles can be inhaled or swallowed and can be laced with tastier foods like chocolate.

Valley student nurse Amanda is a raver and occasional drug user.

"What do you like about the synthetic drugs?" we asked.

"I think it's interesting that you can feel like a totally different way than you go through life," says Amanda.

She's taken hallucinogenic drugs, but takes pause when considering the newest designer drug "smiles."

"They're new and they are not outlawed per se, that's something that would scare me."

The 22-year-old says users never know what's really put into synthetics.

"You could have seizures, people could die from it," she says.

And they have. Smiles has already been linked to two deaths in East Grand Forks, North Dakota.

One teen hyperventilated and beat his head on the ground before he stopped breathing.

"Its not necessarily going to have same high as LSD or ecstasy. And we have a completely different response from one person to another," says Shelly Mowrey with Drug Free Arizona

Mowrey has not heard of the drug here in the state, but says it's tough to keep track of synthetics, because people are constantly reinventing them.

"You can feel so good for four hours and then you can realize that you can feel so crappy," says Amanda.

While Drug Free Arizona has not seen evidence of Smiles here, we asked people on Facebook whether they'd seen it and some teenagers said yes.

Drug Free Arizona encourages parents to talk with kids about synthetics.

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