​What is Flakka?

Flakka is a white or pink crystal synthetic drug that is chemically similar to bath salts. It is usually made from the chemical alpha-PVP, a synthetic version of the stimulant cathinone. Flakka is usually imported from China, Pakistan, and India. The drug is a potent, highly addictive stimulant.

What are the street names/slang terms for Flakka?

  • Gravel: Resembles the colorful pebbles in the bottom of an aquarium
  • $5 Insanity: Readily available for $5
  • “Snacking”: refers to taking additional Flakka while already high

How is Flakka used?

Flakka can be swallowed, snorted, injected, or vaped in an e-cigarette or similar device.

What are the health effects of Flakka?

The small amount of research available shows that the following can occur from using Flakka:

  • “Excited delirium” – extreme stimulation, paranoia and hallucinations, hyperthermia (generally a temperature of 105 degrees) and individual becomes psychotic, which can lead to violent aggression and self-injury
  • Suicidal tendencies
  • Dangerously high body temperature
  • Aggressive and violent behavior
  • Adrenaline-like strength (super human strength)
  • Causes people to act erratically, uncontrollably, and dangerously
  • Delusions and hallucinations (may describe being chased by someone or something)
  • Heart palpitations
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Seizure
  • Death

Excessive use has been linked with feelings of extreme anxiety, paranoia, and hallucinations. Effects can last 3-4 hours, but can also linger for several days.

What parents need to know?

  • The chemical makeup of Flakka is constantly changing and it is often mixed with other substances such as crack cocaine and heroin.
  • Users do not know where Flakka is being made, who’s making it, or what’s been added to it before it reaches them – making the effects very dangerous and unknown.
  • Flakka is generally sold for $5 for a tenth-of a gram, making it very cheap.
  • Flakka is easy to buy in bulk.

What can parents do?

  • Talk to their children about the dangers of using synthetic drugs
  • Know their child’s friends
  • Supervise their child’s activities
  • Monitor where children spend time and their surroundings for drug paraphernalia or evidence of online purchases


Alcoholics Anonymous: 248-332-3521
Alanon: 248-706-1020
Narcotics Anonymous: 248-543-7200

Additional Info