Dangers of Methamphetamine

downside_to_methMethamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant. It is also called meth, speed, crystal, ice or chalk. It is used for medical purposes to treat people with ADHD and obese people as well.

However, methamphetamines can be illegally procured and used as a recreational drug. It is an odorless, white, slightly opaque and bitter-tasting powder that is closely related to amphetamine, although the effects of this drug are far more serious.

Methamphetamine affects the central nervous system and is proven to be toxic to the dopamine nerve terminals found there. It can be taken orally, smoked, snorted or injected. Meth users claim to feel a “rush” for a few minutes. It makes a person feel euphoric or happy.

Since the effect will last for a short amount of time, a user will have to take another dose to maintain the desired high. Other effects are an increase in respiration rate, anorexia, hyperthermia, insomnia and an increase in physical movement. Over time, a user’s tolerance will increase and thus, he or she will start taking larger dosages.

Why Methamphetamine Is a Dangerous Drug

Oral Cavity Complications

A person who uses meth will usually have a condition called xerostomia, which is otherwise called dry mouth or meth mouth. Since saliva is scarce, a meth user’s teeth and gums will be prone to bacteria build-up. He or she will exhibit varying degrees of gum disease, cracked teeth and tooth decay.

Pregnancy Problems

A female methamphetamine user is most likely to go into premature labor. A meth baby will usually experience general lethargy or malaise. The child may develop various neurological problems and behavioral issues. Overall, the child will be weaker than his or her counterparts whose parents are drug-free.

Neurological Complications

When a person uses methamphetamine, large amounts of dopamine, a neurotransmitter, are released. This works by stimulating the brain cells to promote euphoria and body movement. It is a neurotoxic substance, which is known to damage brain cells, which contain serotonin and dopamine.

A longtime user may develop symptoms that are similar to a person with Parkinson’s disease. Meth use will also result in anxiety, paranoia, aggressive behavior, convulsions and irritability.

Cardiovascular Problems

Methamphetamine will cause irregular heartbeat, an increase in heart rate, increased body temperature and elevate the user’s blood pressure. In time the person’s heart may become inflamed due to chronic use of this substance.

Cardiovascular collapse is also linked methamphetamine use. Since a meth addict is usually secretive about his or her drug problem, most cases are discovered too late and results in death.

brainOther Possible Complications

A chronic methamphetamine user is at a risk of developing brain damage, lung problems and liver disease. A speech impediment may develop. It is a short-term side effect that will go away if a person quits meth use.

The drug addict will have a weaker immune system and thus, is easily infected. It is important to note that people who prefer to inject their meth are also prone to HIV or AIDS, especially if a shared needle is used.

How to Tell If A Person Is Addicted To Methamphetamine

1) The meth user will develop a speech impediment. He or she will stutter more than usual.

2) The person may sweat a lot and often has bloodshot eyes.

3) He/she may have drier skin and will lick his or her lips continuously.

4) The meth user will fidget a lot, find it hard to sit still and develop mannerisms that were not present before.

5) He or she may experience frequent panic attacks and insomnia. Paranoia may also develop.

Methamphetamine is a dangerous substance that can potentially harm the user and his or her family. It should be avoided at all costs. If you suspect that your friend or relative is addicted to this dangerous substance, seek out medical help immediately.

Methamphetamine abuse may cause fatal results or long-term health problems. Lastly, avoid confronting a meth user who shows extremely violent behavior.

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