- Parent Category: Rehab
- Category: Rehabs
What is it?
Methamphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant substance that is similar in structure to the class of substances known as amphetamines.
Methamphetamine is currently classified as a Schedule II drug and is available only through a prescription that cannot be refilled due to its high potential for addiction. Although methamphetamine can be prescribed by a doctor, its medical uses are extremely limited, and the doses that are prescribed are significantly lower than those typically abused by a user. The majority of the methamphetamine abused in this country comes from foreign or domestic super labs, although it can also be made in small, illegal labs, where its production endangers the environment, the people in the labs, and neighbors.
Meth rehab is when an individual is addicted to amphetamine or methamphetamine and has to get help to stop using the drug.
How Does Someone Get Addicted To Meth?
Methamphetamine comes in many different forms and can be injected, smoked, snorted, or orally ingested. The preferred method of methamphetamine abuse varies by geographical region and has come to change over time. When it is smoked is often has a much different effect, which leads to very fast uptake of the drug in the brain, and has become more common in recent years, amplifying methamphetamine's addiction potential and adverse health consequences.
The drug is addictive because it alters mood in different ways, depending on how it is taken. Immediately after smoking the drug or injecting it intravenously, the user experiences an intense flash or "rush" that lasts only a couple minutes and is often described as extremely pleasurable. Snorting or oral ingestion produces euphoria - a high but not an intense rush. Snorting produces effects within 3 to 5 minutes, and oral ingestion produces effects within 15 to 20 minutes.
Many people that use meth will chase that initial euphoric feeling they get when using the drug. They will use more and more meth to get the desired effect. This is the basic premise of addiction.
In addition, meth increases the release and blocks the reuptake of the brain chemical known as dopamine, leading to high levels of the chemical in the brain. This is a common mechanism of action for most drugs of abuse. Dopamine is most often involved in reward, motivation, the experience of pleasure, and fine motor function. Methamphetamine’s ability to release dopamine rapidly in reward regions of the brain produces the “rush” of intense euphoria that many users feel after snorting, smoking, or injecting the drug. Chronic abuse of methamphetamine significantly changes how the brain functions.
How Do I Know If Someone Is Using?
Meth can appear as a crystalline powder or in rock-like chunks (known as ‘ice’) that vary in color between white, yellow, brown or pink. Methamphetamine is sometimes died to entice new users with its visual appearance. More often than not a first time users is more likely to try the drug simple based off its attractive appearance.
Many people use meth by smoking, snorting or injecting it. If you find a pipe, aluminum foil, needles or razor blades and rolled up dollar bills there is a possibility that an individual is using meth. Also if you find any of the drug as described above. Most users will store meth in very small plastic or glass containers, or tiny baggies sometimes called button bags.
Other indications that someone could be using the drug include:
• Large, dilated pupils.
• Aggression or paranoia.
• Inability to sleep.
• Sores or rashes on skin.
• Psychotic breaks.
• Lying to obtain the drug or money to buy the drug.
• Legal issues.
• Financial problems.
• Health problems.
Those that don’t seek meth rehab are gamling with their general health and well being on a daily basis. Repeated methamphetamine abuse can also lead to addiction—a chronic, relapsing to the drug characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use, which is accompanied by chemical and molecular changes in the users brain. Some of these changes continue long after methamphetamine abuse is stopped.
Transmission of HIV and hepatitis B and C can also be consequences of methamphetamine abuse. The intoxicating effects of methamphetamine, regardless of how it is administered, can also alter judgment and inhibition and can lead people to engage in dangerous behaviors, including risky sexual behavior. To the abusers who inject the drug, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases can be spread through contaminated syringes, needles, and other injection equipment that is used by more than one person. Methamphetamine abuse has also been proven worsen the progression of HIV/AIDS and its consequences. Studies of methamphetamine abusers who are HIV-positive indicate that HIV causes greater neuronal injury and cognitive impairment for the individuals in this group compared with HIV-positive people who do not use methamphetamine.
Methamphetamine addiction itself is one of the toughest to overcome. A long term meth habit leaves a person unprepared to withstand the enduring symptoms of withdrawal, such as anxiety and depression. Meth damages the brain, and although memory, concentration and cognitive abilities do improve in time, the risk of relapse is high during those initial few months filled with powerful drug cravings.
Most people need a meth rehab center to really break free from the people and places that prompt excessive temptation and to learn life skills that work to minimize the odds of methamphetamine relapse. Meth addiction is true struggle, but with treatment, it can be overcome.
For more information contact Narconon at 800-468-6933.