The term ‘wet drugs’ or ‘dip drugs’ refers to tobacco or marijuana cigarettes dipped into PCP, or ‘angel dust.’ It may also be dipped into formaldehyde-based embalming fluid. There may be little known about what is in the substance which brings great risks and dangers. Find out more about wet drugs and how to know if a person may be using this method to abuse substances.

History of Use

Use of wet drugs can result in serious and sometimes fatal consequences. The origins of wet drugs date back to the 1970s. Some experts believe drug deals mistakenly began using embalming fluid to augment marijuana cigarettes and this led to the current use of this method, PCP, or both. A spike in the use of wet drugs was reported back in the early 2000s. Some of the nicknames are commonly used to refer to this drug:

  • Amp
  • Crazy Eddie
  • Fry
  • Milk
  • Purple Rain
  • Wack
  • Water-Water
  • Wet

Embalming Fluid

This compound of formaldehyde, methanol, glutaraldehyde, and other solvents has combined to create a dangerous phenomenon. The percentage used ranges from 5-37%, while methanol content varies from 9-56%. Most people think of embalming fluid in regards to funeral homes, but the fluid can be purchased directly from chemical companies online or in person. Anyone who comes in contact with this fluid should exercise extreme caution because inhalation or skin exposure have may serious, long-term health consequences, even fatality.


The drug PCP was developed in the 1950s as an intravenous anesthetic in the United States. Due to sedative properties, and its amnesia and analgesic side effects, it was pulled from the U.S. market in 1965. People who were using it seemed to have a high incidence of postoperative delirium and psychosis.

Dangerous Side Effects

The formaldehyde and ethyl alcohol in wet drugs causes physical side effects such as bronchitis, body tissue destruction, brain damage, lung damage, impaired coordination, inflammation and sores in the throat, nose, and esophagus. PCP acts by disrupting receptors of the neurotransmitter glutamate. Side effects of PCP include hallucinations, visual disturbances, impaired motor coordination, severe anxiety, paranoia, seizures, and respiratory arrest. An overdose may cause a high body temperature, causing overheating. People on PCP generally feel invincible and are likely to put themselves and others at risk.  Heinous crimes have been reported after smoking wet drugs. People may not even remember doing anything because of drug induced amnesia.

There are very real dangers and risks associated with taking any drugs, especially those dipped into toxic chemicals. It may have devastating consequences for others, such as children, within reach of such things they don’t know how to handle. Drug detox and rehab are the best ways to work towards recovery from drug addiction and substance abuse.

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