In General Knowledge for the Family

Information About Methamphetamine

Methamphetamine comes in all sorts of different forms, yet the most common used comes in the form of a rock. Known as crystal meth, this material hardens during the manufacturing process, giving an almost crystal like appearance. This crystal is then broken down into smaller pieces or even a powder form and then either snorted through the nose, smoked or injected. Meth has become one of the most addicting drugs currently available, and while extremely illegal, this has not stopped the manufacturing and production of the product.
Due to the extreme value of the material, it is possible for large manufacturing rings, most of which are located in Northern Mexico and the American Southwest, to bring in millions of dollars annually. The major reason meth is so profitable is due to how addicting it is. With the drug, individuals find it difficult to perform daily routines and require more and more meth to function, which in turn corrodes their ability to do just about anything. If you are addicted to meth or you know someone who is experimenting or starting down the road of addiction, it is important to break the chain as soon as possible. The longer someone uses meth, the more attached their body and brain becomes to the product, making it extremely difficult, if not impossible to cure their addiction. Plus, the longer someone uses meth, the more advanced the methamphetamine side effects become.

Unlike other drugs such as cocaine, heroine and other popular drugs, meth is completely constructed from a synthetic process using chemicals. Cocaine and heroine are both made from plants, so this is a completely foreign product. Meth is typically produced through a variety of chemicals, often combining cold medicines with battery acid, drain cleaner, antifreeze and lantern fuel. An experienced chemist is able to produce a more pure material using an exact formula which improves the high a person experiences while reducing the negative elements going into the product, but it still causes most of the same effects of methamphetamine. During the production, if it is not properly manufactured it can cause deadly explosions, not to mention a large amount of toxic waste as well. Due to this, people who produce meth often become sick from extended exposure.

Meth has continued to become more and more popular not only in the United States, but throughout the rest of the world as well. In fact, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime believe almost 25 million individuals throughout the world consume roughly 500 metric tones of meth each and every year. In the United States alone, around 13 million people reported using meth, with over half a million becoming regular users. The number of users of meth required treatment has also skyrocketed. In 1996, only three percent of people checking into rehab reported addiction to meth while that number increased to nine percent by 2006. It is even more popular in Europe. In nations including Slovakia, Latvia, Finland, the Czech Republic and Sweden, reported addiction by people seeking out assistance ranged from 20 to 60 percent.

People take meth for all sorts of reasons. There are several different short-term mental benefits associated with the drug. All forms of meth create a sense of well-being, even if it is not present. It also provides a person with an increased amount of energy, which in turn allows them to work harder than they ever could have without the drug. This is why many workers throughout Southeast Asia take the drug, simply because they need the additional alertness and energy to work extended shifts, often back to back. Even though being caught with the drug is punishable by death in a nation such as Thailand, this is a common practice. However, due to the increased feeling in well-being and the boost in energy, a person is often going to experience a crash, in which this protective wall built around their mind breaks, allowing reality to come in, which makes it difficult to continue on and is why users often go back to using meth in order to avoid reality. Extreme weight loss is a common side effect, or for some individuals a benefit, of extensive using of the drug. This is because it curbs the feeling of hunger.

While a person might take the drugs in order to enjoy the short-term benefits, this quickly turns into substantial short-term problems and eventually long-term side effects. Most individuals who use meth for any extended period of time is going to suffer from disturbed sleep patterns, an increase in aggressiveness, disturbed sleep patterns, extreme delusions of power and eventually irritability, which makes it difficult to think and come to rational decisions. This can also lead to insomnia, anxiety, paranoia and hallucinations. Meth use can also lead to convulsions, regardless of if it is the person’s first time using the drug or their 100th time. Methamphetamine addiction eventually leads to some extreme long-range damage that often is not corrected. This is why it is so important for someone to avoid using meth and to stop their addiction as quickly as possible.

The long term methamphetamine facts point to long-range damage. this includes an increase heart rate and a jump in blood pressure, damage to blood vessels inside of the brain that can eventually lead to a stroke. On top of this, cardiovascular problems start up that might lead to a sudden collapse, plus the liver, kidney and lung all sustain damage, although the actual method of consumption of the meth does play a large role in exactly what organs sustain the damage. If the individual snorts the meth, a destruction of tissue inside of their nose is going to occur, causing their nose to essentially fall apart and break down. Extreme lung problems take place of the person smokes the meth and infectious diseases can occur if a person injects the meth. However they decide to consume the drug, it is going to affect their body in a major way. Tooth decay is going to occur, regardless of how they consume the drug. It is possible to identify a meth user simply by looking at their teeth. Plus, their is a disorientation and apathy, even when they are not on meth, simply because their brain is no longer able to function. This has a direct impact on causing psychological dependence on the drug, psychosis, depression and an increase in the chance of Alzheimer’s disease. Damage done to the brain through meth is similar to Alzheimer’s, so someone who regularly takes the meth might start to forget key people, places and events in their life, including family members, birthdays and other important elements of their own life.

Most individuals who experiment with meth initially take the product and feel a sudden rush as their blood pressure and pulse drastically pick up. This drug often comes after a user experiments with cocaine because the rush a person feels can last 10 times longer than what the rush of cocaine lasts. After the rush, a user experiences what is known as a high. This is where a person tends to feel smarter or even invincible. It also causes them to become involved in arguments, not to mention become focused on specific items that really have no meaning or importance (such as a pen or a flower). The high a person experiences while on meth can last anywhere from four to 16 hours. Due to this extended high, when they come down it is a drastic depression and it forces them to continue using the product. Eventually they might use meth multiple times a day in order to experience the rush and high, but the more they use the product, the smaller the rush and the shorter the high, which is why they use it more and more. However, eventually they are going to no longer experience a rush or a high. At the end of this binge stage of using meth, a person starts to weak out, which causes them to feel empty, itch all over, lose their identity and simply want to crawl right out of their skin. All of this eventually leads to the crash, which can be rather violent and last as long as three days, merging right into the hangover stage, which feels like an alcohol hangover whey there are mentally and physically exhausted and completely dehydrated. This feeling might last up to two full weeks and, over the next one to three months, a person starts to go through withdrawal.

Due to this extended process, it is incredibly difficult for anyone to break free of meth, especially if they have been using it for an extended period of time. The faster a person who is using meth receives help, the better off they are going to be and the increase in their chances of no longer taking meth every again. So if you or a loved one uses meth, it is important to seek out help right away.

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