Methamphetamines Addiction Treatment

Methamphetamine, commonly abbreviated to ‘meth’, is a stimulant and type of amphetamine which creates feelings of exhilaration and euphoria. Meth comes in a few different forms, – namely tablets, powder and crystals. It can be smoked as well as snorted, swallowed and injected.

Methamphetamines Addiction Treatment

Any drug that is injected carries a whole new set of risks, including overdose and the transmission of HIV and hepatitis. Veins may also be damaged and blood clots induced.

The effects of methamphetamine:

  • Increased levels of energy and activity
  • Lack of appetite
  • Rapid heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Lowered inhibitions

The risks of using methamphetamine

Psychosis is one of the most dangerous outcomes of regular and sustained meth use. Those who use it enough can completely lose touch with reality and damage their mental health permanently. Long term use can lead to stroke, lung and kidney damage, as well as gastrointestinal problems.

Like any drug that lowers inhibitions, the user can find themselves taking risks and engaging in behavior they wouldn’t consider sober. This can include putting themselves at physical risk, acting with aggression, and engaging in unprotected sex.

Impurities in meth

Methamphetamines, like all illegal street drugs, are often cut with different substances. Some substances are harmless and will just reduce the potency of the drug. Others, however, can be extremely harmful. Some methamphetamines have been found to be cut with caffeine, other forms of amphetamine, paracetamol and laxatives. The effects of meth can rarely be predicted, because the composition of the drug can vary dramatically.

How addictive is methamphetamine?

Meth can be extremely addictive because it can lead to both physical and psychological dependence in those that take it regularly.

When addiction takes hold, many resort to criminal activity to source the drug that they crave, which in turn leads to various other social and health related problems. In Australia in 2015, it was found that 95% of armed robberies could be linked to amphetamine use. Users are increasingly determined to go to extreme methods to source meth and crystal meth, so they can feed their addiction, leading to greater social and financial problems in the future.

Getting clean from methamphetamines

Withdrawal

The first stage generally lasts for up to 2 weeks, and can be very painful and difficult to endure as the body detoxifies.

Withdrawal can include:

  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of energy
  • Anxiety
  • Teeth grinding
  • Profound cravings
Psychological Difficulties

Despite feeling physically better and stronger, the cravings for methamphetamine will continue to be strong after the detox period. Therapy is crucial during this stage, and allows former addicts to talk about their addiction, what led to it and why they need to stay clean. Since former meth addicts re-entering world at large during this stage often relapse, it’s crucial that they are given ample time to recover mentally.

Ongoing Recovery

The social problems that go hand-in-hand with meth addiction generally mean that former addicts have to dramatically change their lifestyle after recovery. Returning to their old group of friends and even their old home could put them back in a very vulnerable position, where temptation to use can cause relapse. Recovery is always ongoing for meth addicts; they are never cured, but with therapy and guidance they can live healthier, safer lives.


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