Mexican Calea Addiction and Abuse

Like most psychoactive compounds, Mexican Calea is easily abused because of the perceived euphoric effects. Although some therapists use it as an alternative medication for diarrhoea and asthma, people often take it recreationally for its lucid, dreaming properties.

Unfortunately, Mexican Calea is quite addictive and can lead to dependence in some cases. The side-effects are also a cause for concern, and in severe cases may lead to health disorders such as cardiovascular, psychiatric or breathing complications. If you or someone you know is abusing Mexican Calea, see a professional for help immediately.

In this article, we shall help you understand the nature of this drug, its side-effects and how to seek comprehensive treatment. The best way to avoid addiction is via early detection.

What Is Mexican Calea?

To comprehend the effects of Mexican Calea is to understand its nature and origins. The plant is known scientifically as Calea ternifolia (or Calea zecatechichi in some cases). It grows naturally in Mexico and Central America. Other common names include ‘bitter grass’ and ‘dream herb’. Street peddlers may sometimes refer to it as Calea Z.

Mexican Calea is a species of flowering plants from the Asteraceae family, which is classed as an Astrerid, because its flowers are somewhat star-shaped. It can be taken orally as gel capsules, but the liquid tincture can be added to tea and consumed just before bed-time for its lucid dreaming effect. Meanwhile, some people prefer to smoke the dried leaves.

It’s not advisable to use Mexican Calea without the supervision of a qualified physician.

Therapeutic Uses for Mexican Calea

In Mexico, the Calea plant is used as herbal medication for fever and dysentery. The people of Zoque Popoluca refer to the plant as tam huni (bitter gum) and use it as treatment for asthma and diarrhoea. The Mixe people call it poop taam ujts (‘white bitter herb’) and use it as a cure for fever and stomach ache.

The plant is called thle-pela-kano by the Chontal people of Oaxaca, who use it during divination. There are also reports of people who place the drug under their pillow for divinatory dreams. Lucid dreaming helps people remember their dreams and improve their memory recall rate.

Because of the plant’s bitter taste, many users mask it considerably by brewing it in hot water with Osmanthus flowers. While Mexican Calea works to some extent as a remedial compound, its addictive properties can be harmful in the long run.

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Chemical Components of Mexican Calea

Not much research has been carried out on the chemical composition of Calea zacatechichi, but studies have shown that it contains considerable amounts of sesquiterpene lactones and flavons. While it is confirmed to contain an unknown psychoactive compound, it’s the sesquiterpene, caleicine and caleochromene compounds that are thought to be responsible for its sleep-altering abilities. However, scientists are still unsure about how the pharmacology of Mexican Calea induces lucid dreaming.

Risks of Mexican Calea Abuse

While Mexican Calea has been confirmed in health sciences to be helpful in small quantities, it poses serious health risks when used indiscriminately. Like any psychoactive drug, it is addictive and can compel a user to keep taking it for a prolonged euphoric effect.

Over time, tolerance is formed, causing them to use it in larger doses or more often than usual. This increases the risk of dependence and health problems associated with the plant. For example, people with diabetes are at risk, because Calea zacatechichi is known to lower blood sugar levels. Although not much is known about its effect on pregnancy, expectant mothers are advised to avoid the drug to avoid complications altogether.

The Legality of Mexican Calea

Mexican Calea is a legal intoxicant in almost every country except Poland (where it was banned in 2009), Australia and some states in the US. While it is not a controlled substance under America’s federal law, some states have banned it individually. For instance, Louisiana specifically states that it is illegal to have more than 40 plants if they are meant for personal consumption, but not if they are ornamental.

Tennessee recently proposed a bill that would have made Mexican Calea illegal, as well as other hallucinogenic plants, but it was only Salvia divinorum that fell under the law.

Mexican Calea: Abuse, Addiction Signs, Effects and Symptoms

Due to the presence of caleceine, caleochromene, sesquiterpene and another unknown compound, the plant induces lucid dreaming and hallucinatory effects. People who wish to keep experiencing this feeling tend to use it more often than they should. In excess, use soon becomes abuse and subsequently, tolerance is built.

When you become tolerant to a drug, tendency for addiction increases. There are certain signs and symptoms that develop as a result. In severe cases, they interfere with a person’s regular life and threaten their health or wellbeing. When this occurs, you should see an addiction expert quickly.

How Addiction Develops

Addiction develops when a psychoactive compound is continuously abused. These drugs tend to stimulate the pleasure pathways in the brain by affecting the quantity of neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and serotonin secreted. They may also restrict its reuptake into the vesicles by blocking the receptors.

When this happens, the brain tends to become accustomed to the chemical overload, thus numbing the euphoric properties of the drug. To increase the effects, the user takes larger doses. Over a prolonged period, they subsequently become dependent on the substance.

Dependence is formed when a person is unable to perform their regular functions without Mexican Calea in the bloodstream. In some cases, dependence is psychological. This means they will experience mental discomfort until they use the addictive drug in question. If the dependence is physical, then discomfort will manifest physically.

Addiction can be treated, but it requires significant effort and commitment on behalf of the addict. Seeing the right professional is also key to full recovery. For the best results, see a professional while the condition is in its early stages.

Mexican Calea abuse

People abuse Mexican Calea when they use it excessively over a prolonged period. Sometimes, your mode of ingestion can hasten the development of an addiction. For example, smoking the leaves has a greater impact on the central nervous system than drinking it as tea. Those who douse their pillow with the compound before they sleep are at higher risk of abuse, because the dosage in this instance is not controlled.

To avoid substance abuse, always consult a physician if you must use Mexican Calea.

Mexican Calea: A teen drug abuse trend

Teenagers are usually at risk of drug abuse and addiction, because they are at an impressionable age. Experimenting with psychoactive substances is a common behaviour; if unchecked, it could advance well into adulthood. Mexican Calea is drunk at universities and colleges, especially at ‘sleep parties’, where the goal is to experience lucid dreaming. Parents who use the substance could easily leave it within reach of their children.

Mexican Calea is Every Parent’s Worst Nightmare

As a parent, it is natural to be concerned about your child’s drug use behaviour, whether it is recommended by a health professional or not.

A teenager who is addicted to Mexican Calea will likely spend a large amount of time sleeping to experience lucid dreams. This can affect their interaction at home, their school performance, as well as participation in extra-curricular activities. If untreated, it could derail their life choices significantly.

If you suspect your child of abusing a drug, take them to a doctor immediately. There are special rehab centres for teens with substance-abuse disorders.

How Mexican Calea is Abused

Mexican Calea is abused in various ways, including:

  • Quantity ingested
  • Frequency of use
  • Mode of ingestion
  • Mixing with other psychoactive drugs

When you use more than the recommended quantity of a substance – or more frequently than you should – this is considered abuse. Likewise, using unconventional means of ingestion such as snorting or injection increases abuse.

Signs and Symptoms of Mexican Calea Abuse

One of the effective ways to prevent substance dependence is to recognise the signs early on. Many addictions exhibit tell-tale symptoms, which can be identified and acted upon to avert further problems.

So, what are the signs of Mexican Calea abuse?

  1. Seeing traces of the herb lying around (study the plant for easy identification)
  2. The individual tends to sleep a lot (especially at unusual hours)
  3. Irregular sleep patterns (sleeping on and off for days)
  4. Talking excessively about their vivid dreams
  5. Hallucinatory experiences
  6. Lethargy and delayed reactions

Symptoms may also include poor health conditions, impaired cognition, poor motor skills, slurred speech, large appetites and antisocial behaviour.

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Physical, Emotional and Social Effects of Mexican Calea Abuse

The effects of Mexican Calea abuse can range from physical to emotional and social effects.

Physical effects:

  • Significant weight gain
  • Poor motor skills
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Delayed reaction
  • Stomach disturbances

Social effects:

  • Antisocial behaviour
  • Self-exile from family and friends
  • Withdrawal from public appearance
  • Inability to keep up with normal responsibilities
  • Low productivity at work
  • Financial distress

Emotional effects:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Anxiety
  • Aggressive/violent behaviour
  • Mood swings
  • Apathy to things you used to enjoy doing
  • Paranoia
  • Depression

Ironically, one of the effects of Mexican Calea withdrawal is psychosis and mental disturbances.

Effects of Long-Term Mexican Calea Abuse

Abusing Mexican Calea over a prolonged period poses severe mental and physical health risks, ranging from psychosis and depression to stomach and heart problems.

  • Heavy dependence/ difficulty in quitting
  • Risk of heart complications
  • Poor physical and mental fitness
  • Diabetic risks; low blood sugar

Effects of Short Term Mexican Calea Abuse

Abusing Mexican Calea doesn’t only present long-term effects. The danger can be felt instantly in some cases. For example, as a CNS depressant, Mexican Calea can cause breathing difficulties by depressing the respiratory tract.

Other dangers include:

  • Severe stomach upset
  • Allergic reactions to ragweed (related plants)
  • Pregnancy/breastfeeding problems

Avoid ingesting Mexican Calea if you are pregnant or nursing, as you could pass on the chemical components to your infant child.

Mexican Calea: Some Things You Should Know About This Addictive Drug

  1. Mexican Calea is addictive, despite what people say.
  2. It is one of the easiest plants to grow, but germinating the seeds can be a challenge.
  3. Mexican Calea induces lucid dreaming, which some therapists use to cure certain mental health disorders.
  4. Mexican Calea is a legal intoxicant in many countries, but will lead to you being prosecuted in Poland, Australia and some parts of the US.
  5. The plant can be drunk as tea, inhaled via a pillow or smoked through a pipe.
  6. Although you cannot technically overdose on Mexican Calea, it does present a major addiction health risk.
  7. A professional can help you break free from addiction to Calea zecatechichi. Recovery starts with contacting one for help.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Mexican Calea be used without becoming addicted?

Yes, provided you use it as per the guidelines and supervision of a qualified physician.

Is Mexican Calea addictive or not?

Although people like to think otherwise, Mexican Calea is addictive. It depresses the central nervous system (CNS) and influences the brain’s pleasure pathway. Subsequently, this causes you to seek and use the drug continuously.

How Does Mexican Calea Affect the Brain and Body?

It triggers the production of neurotransmitters in the brain and shortens the pleasure pathway. As the body relies heavily on the euphoric effects of Mexican Calea, psychological dependence is formed, whereby the user finds it difficult to perform if the drug is absent.

How Dangerous is Mexican Calea Abuse?

It is not extremely dangerous, but Mexican Calea can pose health risks in the short and long-term. It can trigger mild allergic reactions and is also capable of causing cardiovascular problems.

Is Mexican Calea Illegal?

Yes. It is illegal in Poland, Australia and some parts of America. However, it is not illegal in other countries.

Can Mexican Calea be Used Legally?

Yes, it is employed by some therapists who use lucid dreaming to treat psychiatric disorders.

Can I Safely Mix Mexican Calea with Other Substances?

It is never a good idea to mix intoxicating substances, because of the conflicting interactions in the body.

What are the street names for Mexican Calea?

Other names for Mexican Calea include: Ahuapati, Aschenbornia heteropoda, Atenasia Amarga, Aztec Dream Grass, Bitter Plant of the Mountains and Bejuco chismuyo.

Who is Most at Risk of Abuse?

People who use Mexican Calea indiscriminately are most at risk. They include intrepid dreamers, teenagers, dream chasers, psychiatric patients and unsupervised users.

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