Extremely potent: Just two milligrams of fentanyl (think: a tiny grain of salt) can be fatal for the average person.
Odorless, tasteless, and invisible to the naked eye.
Fentanyl comes in two primary forms: pharmaceutical fentanyl and illicitly manufactured fentanyl.
Illicit fentanyl has been found in all street drugs and comes in a powdered, pill, and liquid form.
The powdered version of fentanyl looks like other illicit drugs and is mixed with substances like heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine
How is it used? Powdered fentanyl can be snorted, injected, or smoked using tin foil, a lighter and a plastic straw
Drug cartels also use fentanyl to manufacture fake prescription pills that resemble commonly prescribed opioids such as Oxycodone and Percocet and other prescriptions such as Xanax and Adderall, all of which are popular party drugs used by teens. Teens who buy pills and other drugs on the street or social media have no way of knowing if what they’re getting has fentanyl. Even more alarming is that according to the 2022 Arizona Youth Survey nearly 50% of Arizona’s 8th graders are unaware of what fentanyl is.
Illicit fentanyl can also be found in liquid form. Liquid fentanyl is found in nasal sprays, eye drops, or is absorbed in the mouth with a blotter paper.
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Announces New Trend: Rainbow Fentanyl
Rainbow fentanyl refers to brightly-colored fentanyl found in various forms, including pills, powder, and blocks that can resemble candy or sidewalk chalk. This new method employed by drug cartels poses a significant danger, particularly to children who may mistake the brightly colored pills for candy.
Myth: Color variations indicate pills are more potent.
Fact: DEA laboratory testing has not indicated any correlation between color and potency in rainbow fentanyl. It’s important to undertint that any color, shape, and size of fentanyl is highly potent and extremely dangerous.
Why is fentanyl dangerous?
Fentanyl is extremely dangerous due to its high potency, widespread availability, and cheap costs. Currently, the street value of a counterfeit fentanyl pill in Arizona is anywhere from $1 to $3 dollars a pill. Users can purchase fentanyl from street dealers, but even more concerning they can purchase them on social media sites and even get them delivered to their home. Context: In Arizona, 45% of all overdose deaths occur at home.
Fentanyl’s potency and cheap cost are also the reason why drug dealers are mixing it into other drugs, making them more addictive and increasing the risk of a fatal overdose to the unknowing user.