Crystal meth Addiction
Meth Addiction Methamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system. Although most of the methamphetamine used in this country comes from foreign or domestic superlabs, the drug is also easily made in small clandestine laboratories, with relatively inexpensive over-the-counter ingredients. These factors combine to make methamphetamine a drug with high potential for widespread abuse.(NIDA drug abuse info). Crystal meth Addiction had overtaken control in the US. Until a few years ago, methamphetamine was considered a regional problem.
Largely confined to the West Coast and Southwest, it was off the radar of federal drug offices in Washington, D.C. But as the drug swept into rural Midwestern communities in the mid-1990s, catching hospitals and treatment centers unprepared for its devastating effects, steps were taken to gain a better understanding of meth’s toll on the body.(NBCNEWS.com) Methamphetamine Affect the Brain Methamphetamine increases the release and blocks the reuptake of the brain chemical (or neurotransmitter) dopamine, leading to high levels of the chemical in the brain—a common mechanism of action for most drugs of abuse.
Dopamine is involved in reward, motivation, the experience of pleasure, and motor function. Methamphetamine’s ability to release dopamine rapidly in reward regions of the brain produces the intense euphoria, or “rush,” that many users feel after snorting, smoking, or injecting the drug.(NIDA) Psychological Effects of Methamphetamine Long-term use can lead to mental conditions, including paranoia, auditory or visual hallucinations, and delusions. These symptoms can last for months to years after methamphetamine use has stopped. Intravenous (IV) Methamphetamine Risks For intravenous (IV) methamphetamine users, there is increased risk of hepatitis or HIV infection. IV meth users are at an increased risk of skin infections and endocarditis. Cardiac Effects of Methamphetamine Cardiac effects, including a dangerously elevated or irregular heart rate and very high blood pressure (meth can cause heart failure). A very high internal body temperature (hyperthermia). Convulsions (can be fatal). Brain cell toxicity (brain cell death). Dental problems Long-term effects may include dental problems. Chronic methamphetamine use causes extreme dental damage; a condition commonly known as meth mouth. Meth use damages the teeth in a number of ways, such as: 1. It reduces the amount of dental-protective saliva in the mouth 2. Meth is an acidic substance that erodes tooth enamel 3. Meth users often grind their teeth together while high 4. Users on meth binges aren’t likely brushing and flossing with regularity