The ingredients used to make methamphetamine in clandestine laboratories are generally household products that by themselves present little danger, but when combined can have serious toxic and explosive effects. If you came in contact with a methamphetamine lab operation, would you recognize it? What ingredients and equipment would be present?
What should you do if you find a meth lab? Most of the chemicals used to make methamphetamine are not dangerous, but some of them are hazardous.
They can include everything from acetone to drain cleaner to cold tablets. Battery acid, paint thinner, and freon yes, like you'd find in an air conditioning unit are possible ingredients too. If you see any of the above ingredients stockpiled in greater than usual amounts, it could be an indication that someone is operating a meth lab. The equipment and processes used to produce meth can also reveal the existence of a clandestine methamphetamine laboratory.
According to the U. Department of Justice, there are some things to look for that may seem innocent enough at first glance, but which may indicate a meth lab is nearby. Many of the above items are found in normal household products, but if they are gathered together in higher than usual amounts, it could indicate meth production activity. If there is a meth lab inside a building, there may be some indications that can be observed from outside. The meth-making process produces strong odors and toxic fumes which the makers will try to ventilate by any available means, even if it means opening windows in cold weather or installing fans and blowers, which makes the smell detectable outside the building.
Meth makers will also dump toxic chemical waste outside which can cause dead spots or burned areas in the grass and vegetation. Meth producers are breaking the law, so they will sometimes set up extensive security measures, some of which can be seen from outside, such as video cameras, baby monitors, "no trespassing" or "keep out" signs, and possibly guard dogs.
Sometimes the behavior of the occupants of a house or building can be clues to the illegal activity going on inside. The one-pot or "shake and bake" method of producing methamphetamine may produce a smaller amount of the drug, but it can be even more dangerous. The process uses many of the same ingredients and produces the same trash as a regular meth lab see abovejust not as much of it. The containers used typically two-liter soda bottles are left with a brown chemical stain inside.
Because the shake-and-bake method can be done anywhere—even in a vehicle—there is not much evidence left of the activity except the trash left behind and the discarded containers.I live upstairs in an apartment building, and my downstairs to the back neighbors are well-known in town for dealing and doing drugs. Earlier tonight I definitely smelled the smell of marijuana but over the last hour or so, another smell has taken place.
It smells kinda sweet but there's also a hint of like a cologne-type smell. I'd like to know simply for health purposes and to alert my landlord of the situation. Plus the neighbors directly below me and next door to the drug dealing neighbors have two young children and I'd like for that family to also be aware of the neighbors.
Please help! The neighbors who live directly below me were gone until about ten minutes after the smell had dissipated. The neighbors downstairs and to the back are known throughout town as dealers. I have a relative who actually buys and smokes with them. The smell I'm smelling is no where near as nice smelling as the tobacco smell.
It's sweet smelling in the sense of sugar and the cologne-type smell is almost like a burning of a chemical smell. I've smelled cigar smoke before and this smell is nothing like that.
I just honestly can't describe what I'm smelling. It's a pleasant, but not so pleasant smell. The smell is currently gone, but I have a wicked headache, nausea and a strange taste in my mouth.
I don't know if the headache and nausea was caused by the smell but I didn't feel sick till about a half hour after the smell began. Well before you freak out it could simply be flavored tobacco.
People smoke it all the time and it comes in flavors like watermelon, grape, cherry, mango, strawberry, orange, etc. So that sweet smell is probably just from that. If not it could also be a cigar with a fruity scent. By the way, just because they smoke marijuana doesn't mean the deal it.
So calling them "drug dealing neighbors" isn't very nice. We have kids in our neighborhood who are seen as "trouble" and every time a security guard is hired they are automatically told to keep an eye on those kids.
I live two houses down from the kids and have never seen or heard of them doing anything bad. Everyone just assumes they are trouble because they dress in baggy clothes and smoke cigarettes.
Also, I don't suggest telling your neighbors. Since they live next door to them they probably smell it better than you do and if it bothered them then they would've done something about it already. Update: The neighbors who live directly below me were gone until about ten minutes after the smell had dissipated. There's an elderly man who is my upstairs neighbor and he smokes tobacco in a pipe.
Answer Save. Opium smells like incense. Flavored tabacco. Good weed. Jason M. It could be opium.Take a look below at some commonly abused substances and how they can be recognized by smell. Alcohol is a legal substance that many drink occasionally for enjoyment. The higher the alcohol content, the stronger the smell is likely to be. The smell of vodka, for example, is often compared to that of rubbing alcohol.
Different drinks can smell malty, bitter, or sweet, but underneath it all is the signature smell of ethanol. Marijuana a. The marijuana plant contains psychoactive agents like THC that, when smoked or eaten, produce a high feeling and a variety of physical and mental effects. Marijuana is perhaps one of the must pungent-smelling drugs, as the plant tissue is full of aromatic compounds called terpenes. Heroin is a highly addictive and illicit opioid drug that is derived from morphine.
HOW DO DRUGS SMELL
Usually sold as a white or brown-tinged powder, heroin can be smoked, snorted, or dissolved and injected. Heroin creates a fast, intense high characterized by euphoric relaxation. Heroin often has a vinegar-like smell. If the washing process is insufficient to remove impurities, these impurities can create the vinegar smell that users describe. The milder the smell, the purer the heroin is likely to be.
Cocaine is a powdery white stimulant that is most often snorted or ingested orally. It produces a frenetic short-term high that hits quickly and is described as making users feel confident and energized. The smell is primarily that of methyl benzoate, the compound used to train drug-sniffing dogs to find cocaine. Some users report odors similar to acetone or gasolinepossibly due to impurities from washing or cutting the drug with other compounds.
The drug is typically smoked using a pipe, though injection and snorting use has been reported. Crack is much more addictive than regular cocaine, and it can even lead to dependency after one use.The editorial staff of Rehabs. Our editors and medical reviewers have over a decade of cumulative experience in medical content editing and have reviewed thousands of pages for accuracy and relevance.
Suspecting a child of abusing drugs is a scary ordeal to go through. Luckily, you have a secret weapon for detecting possible drug use in your house: your own nose. Most drugs give off some sort of aroma, especially when the substance is smoked. How do you know if you or a loved is addicted? Find out here. When meth is smokedit emits a potent odor that many say smells like chemicals or cleaning products; others say it reminds them of burnt plastic.
Beyond Appearance: Identifying Different Illegal Drug Smells
Additionally, after someone goes on a meth binge, their sweat may start to smell similar to ammonia. Generally speaking, all forms of heroin give off a vinegary, acidic smell when smoked.
To make things even more difficult for parents, the smell of smoked heroin dissipates at a rapid pace. Smoking is the most common route of administration.
The Nose Knows: A Parent’s Guide to Drug Smells and Odors
Extra Tip: The scent of crack smoke is similar to that of meth. What would you do with that money if treatment was affordable? Find out if your insurance covers treatment now! American Addiction Centers AAC is the leading provider for addiction treatment nationwide, specializing in evidence-based treatment and mental healthcare. With 9 locations across the U. When you call the helpline displayed on Rehabs. Our helpline is offered at no cost to you and with no obligation to enter into treatment.
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Have questions? At American Addiction Centers, we strive to provide the most up-to-date and accurate medical information on the web so our readers can make informed decisions about their healthcare.
Our reviewers are credentialed medical providers specializing in addiction treatment and behavioral healthcare. We follow strict guidelines when fact-checking information and only use credible sources when citing statistics and medical information.
Look for the medically reviewed badge on our articles for the most up-to-date and accurate information. Search by location cancel. Email my list:. Written by Aimee Runyon. Last updated on April 7th, What Is That Smell?
What Is Heroin? What Is Marijuana? What Is PCP? What Is Crack Cocaine?
Share Share on Facebook. Share on Twitter. Share via email. Browse by Category.By the time they reach their senior year, almost 70 percent of high school students will have tried alcohol. Half will have taken an illegal drug, close to 40 percent will have smoked a cigarette, and more than 20 percent will have used a prescription drug for a nonmedical purpose. It can sometimes be hard to spot the signs of substance abuse in teenagers. For one thing, some of the indicators of addiction in teens may be mistaken for usual teenage angst.
So what are some different ways you can tell if your teen is doing drugs? Believe it or not, your nose might be your most valuable tool.
Certain drugs have distinctive smells, and if you learn to identify them, you might catch your child in the act. Other people say that it reminds them of burnt plastic. Also, after someone consumes a lot of meth, their sweat may start to smell like ammonia. Depending on the type of heroin, the smell may be more or less detectable, but it tends not to linger for long either way.
It depends on the strain. Opiate pills: Some people smoke pills like Percocet or OxyContin, and these have a sweet smell that some compare to sugar and burnt marshmallows. If you or a loved one need help with quitting drugs or alcohol, consider Asana Recovery. Call us any time at to get started.Smelling disorders, including phantom smells and a lack of smell, can be a sign of serious health problems. Common olfactory hallucinations include lots of icky odors.
Sufferers report smelling hydrogen sulfide rotten eggsbad perfume, garbage, a gas leak, wet dog, pungent body odor or spoiled fish or feces. The brain may trigger such sickening odors instead of agreeable ones because humans learned very early to avoid noxious smells for survival. According to a survey, 2. Another 1. In a New York Times story, a woman suffered a succession of unpleasant phantom odorsfrom dank earth to burnt chili. When antibiotics failed to treat the condition, she simply learned to live with it — and avoid disagreeable odors.
Even if there is no underlying tumor, epilepsy or some other infection, problems with your sense of smell can be very disabling. Furthermore, doctors will often treat it like a psychiatric problem, with patients visiting an average of seven physicians before getting help, says Hirsch. The irony is, some people with phantosmia will develop psychiatric disorders, depression or suicidal behavior as a result of their condition.
Sometimes people think the stink is coming from themselves, which can lead to a condition known as olfactory reference syndrome, says Hirsch. While pinpointing the cause of phantosmia can sometimes be difficult, treatment is available, including nasal saline drops, anti-depressants, sedatives and anti-epileptic drugs.
Most patients respond to medication, however, a surgical procedure involving the olfactory bulb has also been shown to provide relief. Although normal aging brings a gradual loss of smell, phantosmia sometimes occurs with a reduced ability to smell real scents, another matter that can have serious ramifications, Hirsch says.
One quick way to test whether your sense of smell is diminished is to dish up a bowl of ice cream. News Business World Sports Podcasts. Follow NBC News. Breaking News Emails Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings. Let our news meet your inbox. The news and stories that matters, delivered weekday mornings.
Smelling smoke can be sign of a seizure Aug. Health Why do we like pumpkin spice so much?There is nothing more alarming than having to wonder if your child is using drugs.
How to Recognize a Meth Lab
There will be some whose change in behavior gives away the fact that they are using drugs. Others will opt to open up to their parents about the situation. As to the majority, the parents will be left wondering and suspecting about the situation. The latter, of course, is nerve-racking. But you do not have to be petrified wondering about what is happening.
You just need to have a keen sense of smell. Table of Contents. Having knowledge about what drugs smell like will make a big difference in curtailing the problem. Here is a quick guide to aid parents in deciphering which scent to be wary about:. The thing about this drug is it is odorless when we talk about its purest, most common form. When it is already manipulated, you get an acidic, vinegar-like smell. Nevertheless, each kind of heroin gives a different odor in relation to the geographical regions they were produced.
China White, for example, has a barely noticeable stink. The lethal combination of heroin and fentanyl, meanwhile, hardly gives out a smell. Parents would narrowly notice if their kid is using it because the smell of smoked heroin disappears like a flash. The smoke itself is also lost to sight almost instantaneously. Many associate the smell of methamphetamines to that of strong chemicals. The scent is so potent that people think of it as a scent that is close home cleaners or even paints. In some instances, it emits a vinegar or ammonia scent.
It will be a different story once the meth is smoked. It would give out a more subtle, lighter, and almost sweet smell. There is no straightforward answer as to how marijuana or cannabis smells like because the scent depends on its specific strain. These strains — skunk, super lemon haze, bubble gum and sour diesel — have the aromas associated with their names. However, there is an overlapping smell that is common to all strains.
Once smoked, it smells like skunk jumbled with herbs. This is the scent that usually sticks to the clothes.
The smell is so strong and stays for quite some time. It is also a drug of its own class as it is the only that can be noticed prior to it being lit or even moments thereafter. This drug is among the few hallucinogens in the market. It all depends upon how much is taken.
To use, PCP is generally smoked. It is during this process of burning that it exudes the smell similar to a permanent marker. Among the pills available, opiates are the only ones that are generally smoked. Pills such as Percocet or Oxycontin emits a certain degree of sweet smell when they are burned.
Those who have used it claim that the smoke smells and tastes like burnt marshmallow.DIY with MI - Fixing a Burnt Out Drill
Additionally, they have that sugary taste.