Crystal Meth: Navigating its Impact and Addiction Signs

Few other substances cause as resilient and persistent an addiction as methamphetamine, a drug in the amphetamine family. Methamphetamine is an illegal stimulant that can be made using several toxic household chemicals. It takes the form of white crystals that can be crushed and smoked, inhaled, or injected. It affects the dopamine receptors in the brain, resulting in elevated mood and alertness and, at higher doses, psychosis. Users often stay awake for long periods of time, because the drug also interferes with serotonin, the neurotransmitter chemical in the brain that regulates sleep. It is illegal in the United States, though many close relatives of the drug are legal and highly regulated. Because of its high addiction potential, methamphetamine rehabilitation can be difficult.

Nicknames for Methamphetamine:

In its useable form, methamphetamine looks like white crystals, hence the common name of crystal meth. It is important to know the slang terms for methamphetamine to be able to recognize if a loved one is taking the drug. Some other street names for crystal meth include:

  • Meth
  • Glass
  • Crystal
  • Ice
  • Tic
  • Crank
  • Tweak
  • Quartz
  • CR

Side-effects of Crystal Meth Use

Chronic use can have some extreme side effects. Here is the shortlist:

  • Rapid breathing
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Fever
  • Hyperactivity
  • Depression
  • Tremors or twitching
  • Acne
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Headaches
  • Depressed appetite
  • Insomnia

Methamphetamine damages serotonin and dopamine receptors, possibly resulting in post-withdrawal symptoms months after the last dose, which is another factor that can complicate crystal meth rehab. Heavy use can cause serious psychological reactions, including psychosis, delusions, and hallucinations. One hallucination that many methamphetamine users experience is the belief that insects are crawling over their skin. Severe tooth decay is common in drug users, possibly because of the dry-mouth, long nights, and sugary cravings it induces.

Other Dangers

The danger that comes from crystal meth doesn’t just come from its use. Methamphetamine is most commonly made in small, home laboratories across the United States. The chemical reactions involved in production can be very dangerous, and meth lab explosions are fairly common. The fumes produced when methamphetamine is “cooked” are extremely toxic and can coat objects in the area with a deadly residue.
Crystal meth requires many toxic household substances, including ether, ammonium nitrate, and battery acid. Pseudoephedrine, the active ingredient in many allergy medications, is another ingredient required to make crystal meth. As a result of increased meth production in recent years, several states have passed restrictions on pseudoephedrine; most require an ID check and limit the number of boxes one person can purchase per day. Oregon and Mississippi even require prescriptions for pseudoephedrine, which has dramatically decreased meth lab incidents in each state. Controlling the ingredients used to make meth helps prevent production and addiction, nipping the problem in the bud before methamphetamine rehabilitation is necessary.

Final thoughts:

Methamphetamine or crystal meth is an extremely addictive substance that often has permanent negative effects on the user’s body. The drug’s popularity has increased in past years, but restrictions on the key ingredient pseudoephedrine have decreased production in certain states. Methamphetamine rehabilitation is difficult but can be successful if handled correctly. See our methamphetamine rehab

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