Methamphetamine is a powerfully addictive psychostimulant that is sold illicitly and, rarely, legally. When prescribed by a physician, it is a last-line treatment for obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. When bought on the street, people use it to enhance sexual desire, boost energy and improve mood. Meth abuse results in several extremely serious health problems, and overdosing can be fatal.
Facts About Methamphetamine
A Japanese chemist named Nagai Nagayoshi first synthesized methamphetamine from ephedrine in 1893. Another chemist refined it further in 1919, and German soldiers took the drug for its stimulant effects during World War II.
Obetrol Pharmaceuticals marketed methamphetamine in the 1950s for weight loss, and it became a popular diet pill for nearly two decades. As problems with addiction developed, however, the federal government declared methamphetamine a controlled substance with limited medical applications. This move strictly limited the production and sale of the drug.
Today’s legal form of methamphetamine is called Desoxyn. The drug carries a black box warning that alerts patients to the hazards of methamphetamine abuse and addiction. Desoxyn, when taken for a prolonged period of time, can cause tolerance and dependence. It can also cause overdose, adverse heart events and death. That is why people who struggle with attention or weight issues are often ordered to try other drugs or remedies first.
Recreationally, methamphetamine gained popularity with users who sought its powerful stimulant, aphrodisiac and euphoric effects. While users can snort, smoke and inject the drug, injecting meth is the fastest and most dangerous way to use it.
Crystal meth is a form of methamphetamine that produces the same effects but looks like a white quartz crystal. Meth is sometimes referred to as crack, speed or chalk. Users call crystal meth ice or glass.
Dangers of Meth Tolerance
Methamphetamine is a neurotoxin that severely damages the brain. As abuse continues and the amounts taken increase, the brain learns to rely on the drug. The longer the abuse continues, the more of a tolerance the brain will build up against meth — taking more and more is necessary to achieve the same high.
Physical dependency develops when the person struggling with addiction can no longer function without meth and must take the drug simply to avoid withdrawal. Meth withdrawal is difficult and requires professional help, especially for those who are chronic heavy abusers.
The Physical and Psychological Effects of Methamphetamine Abuse
Addiction professionals count methamphetamine among the most dangerous drugs in the world. Some users report becoming addicted from the very first use. As a central nervous system stimulant, meth speeds up functions such as heart rate and breathing.
There are a broad array of symptoms associated with methamphetamine abuse and addiction. Not only does using meth cause serious and life-threatening physical problems, the resulting emotional issues require professional treatment. The health of a person struggling with meth addiction will diminish rapidly in a short period of time.
Refusing to eat, excessive physical activity, twitching frequently and clenching the jaw are common physical symptoms. Flushed skin and profuse sweating, dilated pupils and changes in blood pressure and heartbeat also occur. Dizziness, blurry vision, numbness, skin problems, gastric problems, meth mouth, insomnia — the list of symptoms is nearly endless.
Emotionally, meth addiction causes obvious problems. Periods of excitement after using descend into angry and depressive behaviors. Changes in libido, obsessively repetitive behavior, grandiose moods, fear and paranoia all define meth addiction. With time, methamphetamine is associated with drug-induced psychosis as well as violent or criminal behavior, suicide, depression and anxiety.
In addition to these extremely serious problems, individuals who are addicted to methamphetamine are at high risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease. Many users take meth because it increases feelings of sexual desire — taking the drug can lead to engaging in unprotected sex. There is a strong correlation between methamphetamine abuse and life-threatening sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS.
Finally, taking too much methamphetamine can be fatal. The symptoms of meth overdose include:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Tremors and severe agitation
- High body temperature
- Difficulty urinating
- Kidney failure
- Cerebral hemorrhage
If you suspect a loved one is using methamphetamine, get help now.
As one of the most dangerous and addictive drugs in the world, beating an addiction to methamphetamine is challenging. People who successfully recover from meth addiction often describe it as one of the most difficult things they have ever had to do. The good news is that you or your loved one doesn’t have to go through recovery alone. We are here to help at 12 Keys Rehab.
The staff at 12 Keys Rehab is experienced, qualified and understanding. We help people beat addictions to dangerous drugs such as meth every day. We treat the full spectrum of issues associated with addiction using a multidisciplinary treatment track that we customize for every client.
This treatment track includes medical detox, progressive therapies and treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy and neurofeedback, and 12 Step care. Clients learn why addiction became a problem and how they can avoid using drugs in the future.
Our treatment center only enrolls small number of clients at one time. This allows us the opportunity to provide more one-to-one sessions than most other drug and alcohol rehabs in the country. Our clients also benefit from our rehab center’s beautiful location on a serene and private waterfront property in southwest Florida. The supportive and calming environment at 12 Keys Rehab is the ideal place to rebuild a lifestyle that is out of control.
Find Your Path to Freedom at 12 Keys Rehab
If you are tired of watching yourself or your loved one sink further into addiction, it’s time to get help. Call us now for a free and confidential assessment of your situation. Why wait any longer when you can walk the path to sobriety starting right now?
Call 12 Keys Rehab for more information and find your path to freedom, starting today.
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