Crystal Meth Addiction
Crystal meth addiction is a treatable illness. The following information is provided to help you discover more about crystal meth and its effects.
Crystal meth is the crystalline form of methylamphetamine and is usually smoked (other forms of methamphetamine are produced in powder and tablet form). Crystal meth is highly addictive and physical and psychological dependency is quickly established when injected or smoked, however methamphetamine can also be snorted or used as a suppository. Crystal meth is much longer acting than other amphetamines and one hit can last for up to 16 hours. Tolerance develops at a fast pace requiring the user to take increasing amounts of crystal meth to achieve the same level of high.
Whilst methylamphetamine has medical uses, addiction usually occurs where individuals use crystal meth as a stimulant. Crystal meth significantly affects sex drive, mood, energy, concentration and appetite.
Physical effects of Crystal Meth include:
- Dental problems
- Heart problems – increased heart rate, palpitations, heart attacks
- High Blood pressure
- Impaired immune system
- Liver and kidney damage
Psychological effects of Crystal Meth include:
- Decreased appetite
- Extreme mood swings
- Increased Libido
- Increased alertness, concentration and alertness
- Increased self confidence
- Obsessive behaviour
- Panic attacks
- Short-term memory loss
Each individual is different and negative effects of crystal meth addiction can be short or long lasting, this is thought to be due to possible lasting changes in brain chemistry stemming from long-term use.
Withdrawal effects of Crystal Meth include:
- Excessive eating
- Excessive sleeping
These negative withdrawal effects can be addressed in an appropriate clinic. The highly experienced staff will work with you to make sure you are physically safe and comfortable throughout your detox. It is vital that you are psychologically supported through the detox process, as well as medically supervised. Having support for your body and mind is the safest and most comfortable way to detox and also establishes a firm foundation to start your journey into long-term recovery.
Crystal meth is often taken with other drugs as a means to come down from the high, usually benzodiazepines. The mixture of these powerful drugs can lead to overdosing. Overdoses can prompt strokes and comas which put the user at a significant risk of death. The risk of overdose is exacerbated by the fact that street crystal meth is often a mixture of various toxic substances which vary from batch to batch. Smoking gives an instant hit that can last for 16 hours, but as the high wears off users top up to maintain the high. Topping up on large doses can lead to overdosing simply by mixing different strengths of the drug. It is extremely difficult to ascertain exactly how strong crystal meth is due to varying purities in the illegal market.
For intravenous users of crystal meth, the use of non-sterile needles and syringes and other related equipment leads to the risk of contracting blood-borne pathogens such as HIV and hepatitis. As crystal meth is directly related to increased libido users often place themselves at a further risk of HIV infection through unprotected and uninhibited sex. A trend is developing in the USA that suggests crystal meth is a factor in a significant proportion of newly reported AIDS cases.
The mental, physical and social detrimental consequences of having a crystal meth addiction can be alleviate and treated by sourcing appropriate and experienced help. There are many treatment clinics who can support you comfortably through a detox and help you develop the psychological tools and strategies that will set you on a path of long term recovery. Freeing you from the constraints of a powerful and overwhelming substance addiction.
For help and advice regarding crystal meth addiction please contact us.