What Is Meth?
Why It's So Addictive
Subsequently, individuals who use meth begin to take the drug to replicate that feeling of pleasure. However, there’s a danger to this repeated meth use. Methamphetamine usage can become so habitual that it becomes compulsive. This is because consistent meth use alters the brain’s decision-making areas. Usually, getting high is made consciously in the brain’s prefrontal cortex. However, after several meth doses, this “decision” transfers to the hindbrain, which is in charge of non-voluntary actions like blinking and breathing. This results in loss of “conscious” control of drug use and invariably leads to abuse and addiction.
Signs and Symptoms of Meth Addiction
- Enlarged pupils
- Impaired mental function
- Stomach discomfort
- Breathing difficulties
- Reduced appetites
- Aggressive tendencies
- Problems with memory and verbal learning
- Outbursts of violence
- Sleeping difficulties
- Lack of focus
- Movement, motor control, and coordination disturbances
- Mood swings
- Visual and auditory hallucinations
Top 10 Meth Addiction Myths & Facts
Helping people with meth addiction and their loved ones understand the truth about methamphetamine will enable them to understand the condition better and feel more comfortable reaching out for help. Some of these meth myths are based on some interesting facts about meth. Some of these meth myths include:
Meth Helps You Focus at Work
A Meth High Can Last for Days
It Causes Holes in the Brain
Meth Use Doesn't Have Side Effects
Individuals Who Use Meth Can't Recover Their Brain Function
However, it’s not true that individuals who use meth can’t recover their brain function. These structural changes that lead to decreased brain functioning might be challenging to treat, and recovery may take time. Still, it’s possible to recover brain function with the right therapy and medication.
It's Easy to Hide Meth Addiction
Meth Is Instantly Addictive
Crystal Meth Can Cause Cancer
Does meth cause cancer? Although there is no documented cause and effect link between meth and cancer, it has well-known acute toxic effects on the brain and liver. According to a 2019 study published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology Journal, there is some evidence that meth damages two types of DNA in humans, leading to the assumption that the drug may cause adverse health effects (such as cancer and infertility) in individuals who use meth long-term.
Meth Makes You Better at Socializing
Individuals Who Use Meth Can't Recover
Signs and Symptoms of Withdrawal
Although everyone’s meth withdrawal symptoms are unique, several indications and symptoms are typical. They include
- Increase in appetite
- Strong meth cravings
Coping and Relief
- Avoid trigger situations or circumstances
- Stay busy; make sure to distract yourself with something
- Eat healthily
There are several long-term treatment options for meth addiction. The most common, most widely used of these methods is behavioral therapy. Behavioral therapy used in the treatment of meth addiction is divided into two main types: cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and contingency management.
Get Help for Meth Addiction Today
Detox is usually the first step of meth addiction treatment. It involves slow tapering of meth doses to reduce toxicity in the body and reduce the severity of meth withdrawal symptoms. Additional medication is often prescribed to take care of accompanying withdrawal symptoms.
During meth addiction detox and rehabilitation, treatment may either be inpatient care or outpatient care. Inpatient care allows individuals with a meth addiction to be placed under constant supervision. This makes it possible to control therapy outcomes and effectively manage withdrawal symptoms and signs. Outpatient therapy will enable individuals to maintain their usual daily routine and activities while simultaneously operating and adjusting to the “new reality” of daily living without meth use.5