Categories: Drugs

Methamphetamine Use and the Dangers of This Drug

There are many illegal substances that continue to be large problems within the nation. One of such is methamphetamine, which is frequently used in the form of a powder or pill. It is also often manufactured in a form that resembles glass fragments or white crystals, which is more specifically called Crystal Methamphetamine. There are numerous street names for methamphetamine, such as ice, meth, glass, chalk, or crystal. Chemically, methamphetamine is very similar in structure to amphetamine, which is used in medications to treat conditions like narcolepsy and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Methamphetamine use can lead to addiction very quickly.

Meth can be used in a couple different ways, such as inhaling or snorting the powder, ingesting a pill, smoking, or dissolving the powder in alcohol or water and injecting it. Methamphetamine use renders highs which tend to be quite short-lived, which can result in people using repeated doses in short amounts of time. Some will also engage in periods of heavy binging, which involves them not eating or sleeping while participating in methamphetamine use every few hours, and these binges can sometimes last for days.

The Effects of Methamphetamine Use

The direct effects of methamphetamine can be very similar to that of other stimulants like cocaine or amphetamines, such as:

  • Suppressed Appetite
  • Increased Alertness and Physical Activity
  • Irregular or Rapid Heart Rate
  • Increased Blood Pressure
  • Increased Body Temperature
  • Faster Breathing

Aside from the above short-term effects, meth can also have a litany of long-term effects and health dangers. Those who inject are more likely to contract infectious diseases like Hepatitis B/C and HIV. Methamphetamine use can also lead to risky sexual behavior, which could also contribute to the potentiality of contracting these diseases. In addition, meth use can actually worsen the progression of HIV/AIDS as well.

Other long-term effects of methamphetamine use can include:

  • Weight Loss
  • Intense Itching, and Resulting Sores from Scratching
  • Severe Dental Issues (Otherwise known as “meth mouth”)
  • Confusion
  • Sleeping Difficulties
  • Violent or Aggressive Behavior
  • Anxiety
  • Hallucinations
  • Paranoia

Other Impacts of Methamphetamine Use

Over time, meth use can also impact the brain in severe ways. Meth use affects the brain’s dopamine production, which is the brain chemical involved with pleasure and the “reward system.” When a person uses meth, it increases the dopamine production within their brain, making them feel good. Those who use meth for extended periods of time can have their dopamine system impacted heavily, and several health problems can develop related to reduced coordination, impaired verbal learning, and emotional and cognitive issues. Some of these issues and difficulties may reverse after one discontinues their use for a year or more, but others may take much longer abstinence to improve.

There is of course also the potential for a person to overdose on meth. This is when they use too much, and it results in a toxic reaction within the body that can produce harmful symptoms or even death in some cases. Overdose from meth can result in several very serious health issues, such as kidney failure or heart attack, both of which could result in death. In the event of an overdose, an individual needs to receive immediate medical attention, as it can help to mitigate the consequences.

When individuals develop an addiction to methamphetamine, it can be quite difficult for them to overcome it. They will typically have to handle any physical dependency first, which could include withdrawal symptoms like:

  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Psychosis
  • Anxiety
  • Cravings

Let Best Drug Rehabilitation Help You or Your Loved One

Meth addiction can be extremely despairing, but treatment can help people to overcome it. Give Best Drug Rehabilitation a call today and we can help you or your loved one find the best treatment program for your needs.

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