Methamphetamine Addiction

What to Expect During Methamphetamine Addiction Rehab

While many people struggle with meth addiction, they are unaware of how to begin their treatment. Typically, the first step in overcoming meth addiction is detoxification which isn’t a pleasant experience. However, knowing what to expect during methamphetamine addiction rehab can prepare your mind ahead.

Canada is battling a crystal meth endemic. Abuse of crystal meth is still on the rise in Canada with about eight million people battling some form of meth abuse.

With the rise in demand for meth around the world, Canada produces even more meth. Unsurprisingly, the United Nations once dubbed Canada as the largest producer of meth in the world.

If you or a loved one is battling with meth addiction, you need all of the help you can get. Part of that help is getting all of the information you need about what happens during meth rehab. It’s why we have written this blog.

This article can help you rekindle your hope of overcoming meth addiction. With explanations on what to expect during methamphetamine rehab, you’ll have an insight into how meth rehab works. Also, we’ll explain the different stages of meth addiction rehab in detail. Here’s what the road to sobriety looks like!

Meth Addiction: What It Is

There are many names people call methamphetamine in Canada. It is commonly referred to as

  • Crystal meth
  • Ice
  • Chalk
  • Crank
  • Glass
  • Redneck cocaine
  • Blue
  • Speed

Meth is a shiny, bluish-white and glass-like substance that people consume. It is a powerful stimulant that produces dependence and compulsive effects. Also, meth and amphetamines are similar although the latter is used in treating narcolepsy and Attention Deficit Disorder{ADD}. However, amphetamines like Concerta and Adderall are legal while crystal meth isn’t.

While many prefer to snort crystal meth, others prefer to smoke, swallow or inject through their veins. Also, crystal meth comes in tablets, powder or crystal form. There are no specific age grades for the use of meth however, it is commonly used in rave parties.

Furthermore, the use of crystal meth in nightclubs is the reason people term it a club drug. This highly addictive drug is very concentrated causing first-time users to get hooked by it.

The intensity of this high makes meth addiction is one of the most difficult addictions to overcome especially if you’re doing it yourself. Meth addiction rehab is the most effective way to quit the use of crystal meth.

Effects of Meth Addiction

The effects of meth differ according to how much of it you consume. Also, the method through which you take meth determines its effect. For instance, for people who snort meth, they tend to feel its effects in five minutes or less. On the other hand, the effect of meth kicks in 30 minutes after swallowing it as a tablet.

The most common method of consuming crystal meth is by injecting it through veins. The reason is crystal meth triggers the release of some chemicals in the brain. These chemicals are:

  • Noradrenaline
  • Dopamine
  • Serotonin

These three chemicals are in charge of the excitement and alertness we feel. They also are released when we are happy or having sex. The effects of crystal meth are physical and mental, not forgetting to add that they are unpredictable. Here are some of them.

Short term mental effects of crystal meth

  • Less fatigue and increased energy
  • Euphoria
  • Increased sexual drive
  • A rush of ideas
  • High mood
  • Lack of appetite
  • Increased alertness and wakefulness
  • Increased confidence

Short term physical effects of crystal meth

  • Twitching muscles
  • An irregular and fast heartbeat
  • Stomach pains
  • High blood pressure
  • Dizziness and headache
  • Dilated pupils
  • Unusual body temperature
  • Fast breathing

If you inject crystal meth into your system, chances are high that you may cause the spread of diseases. Examples of these diseases are.

  • HIV
  • Hepatitis B and C.

Typically, constant crystal meth abuse can cause a decrease in euphoria. This then leads to an increase in compulsive behaviour and unpleasant effects.

Furthermore, people who binge on crystal meth are usually too focused. They also exhibit repetitive behaviours combined with hallucinations, paranoia and sleeplessness.

Long term mental effects of crystal meth

Using crystal meth over a long period can no doubt lead to dependence. The effects of long-term use can cause periods of depression and stimulation.

Here are other long-term mental effects of crystal meth:

  • Long or short-term memory issues
  • Difficulty in controlling urges
  • Brain damage
  • Inability to be attentive
  • Loss of finger or hand dexterity
  • Paranoia
  • Violence
  • Homicidal thoughts
  • Hallucinations, both visual and auditory

Methamphetamine Addiction

Long term physical effect of crystal meth

One major risk of long use of crystal meth is cardiovascular problems. Physical problems associated with long-term meth abuse include:

  • Stroke
  • Poor heart function
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Death

Also, the long-term physical effects of crystal meth can include poor nutrition and a weak immune system.  Crystal meth can cause cavities, dry mouth and sour taste. Other physical effects are:

  • Lung disease
  • Kidney damage
  • Stroke
  • Cracked teeth
  • Skin infections and sores
  • Uncontrolled movements

If pregnant women consume crystal meth, it can result in:

  • Low birth weight
  • A decrease in appetite
  • Premature delivery
  • Birth defects

Symptoms of Meth Addiction

Finding out what to expect during methamphetamine rehab is the next step when you notice the symptoms of meth addiction in you or a loved one.

From insomnia to aggressive behaviours, meth addiction symptoms cover a broad spectrum. While the symptoms are broadly classified into two — behavioural and physical symptoms, they are also difficult to conceal.

Behavioural symptoms of meth addiction

  • Psychosis
  • Increased violent behaviour
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of interest in other things

Physical symptoms of meth addiction

  • Tooth decay
  • Pale skin
  • Cracked teeth
  • Liver or kidney failure

Stages of Meth Addiction Rehab: What to Expect

Meth addiction rehab typically begins with withdrawing from meth use. For many addicts, the withdrawal stage is usually very painful because of its symptoms. But that it’s where it ends.

Part of understanding what to expect during methamphetamine rehab is understanding the step-by-step breakdown of the procedure. Here’s what we mean.


The more you consume crystal meth, the higher your tolerance for the drug. What this means is that your body will require more crystal meth to give you the high effect. If you are unable to get high, your body will start to demand meth.

This demand will exist in the form of what we call withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms are the primary indicator that you’re in the withdrawal stage of meth addiction treatment.


Detox is a process that happens through medical intervention. It’s the stage of meth addiction treatment that helps you go through difficult withdrawal. What detox simply means is to remove the addictive substance (crystal meth) from your body.

Addiction Treatment

Going to rehab after detox is important because you put yourself at risk of relapsing if you don’t. A rehab centre offers you more chances of long-term sobriety.

You see, during the rehab (addiction treatment) stage, experts will help you treat the addiction. While adequate care and monitoring are a given, part of what to expect during meth addiction treatment includes counselling, behavioural therapy and more.

This is the stage of meth addiction treatment that provides you with the tools you need to prevent a relapse. As we will explain later on in this blog, meth rehab can either be in-patient and outpatient.

Related Article: The Cost of Meth Addiction and Other Substance Rehab

What to Expect During Meth Addiction Treatment: The Withdrawal Stage

When a person desists from using crystal meth, they begin to experience withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms are a function of the intensity of your meth addiction. As such, they can be severe or mild.

It’s important you seek medical attention if your symptoms get severe. Some examples of common crystal meth addiction withdrawal symptoms are:

Sleepiness and fatigue

Crystal meth can make you very hyperactive and even cause you not to sleep. However, if you stop taking it, you will feel the opposite. Addicts can experience sleepiness and tiredness during their first week of withdrawing from crystal meth. Typically, after five days of not using crystal meth, the sleepiness kicks in.

Furthermore, addicts experiencing this withdrawal symptom can sleep for about 11 hours daily. This sleepiness is often referred to as hypersomnia. Also, you may experience intense dreams which are likely to reduce in the first week of withdrawal.


Psychosis is a symptom of crystal meth withdrawal that consists of hallucinations.

Psychosis can include delusions which are ideas that appear true but aren’t.

This isn’t just part of what to expect during the withdrawal stage of meth rehab. People who are high or binging on meth can also experience this symptom.


Meth addicts who are going through withdrawal are often anxious. According to an NCBI study, up to 30% of addicts in the meth withdrawal stage will have anxiety and related symptoms.

Increased hunger

It’s not unusual for people using meth to lack appetite. Often, while high on meth, they can go days without food. However, all these changes when they stop using the drug. During withdrawal, meth addicts have strong cravings for food, especially carbohydrates.

Furthermore, they develop a craving for sweet things that starts right from when they withdraw from drug use. This strong craving can last up to about three weeks during withdrawal.


While experiencing crystal meth withdrawal, depression is completely normal. It’s normal not to feel excited about everything. However, after three weeks of withdrawal, depression decreases. Although some people may experience depression longer than three weeks.

Cravings for meth

There is always a strong urge to take meth during withdrawal. This strong urge is known as cravings and it’s common with people addicted to drugs.

What Happens During Meth Addiction Treatment: The Detox Stage

Detox has to happen under medical supervision. It can either be at a detox centre or the rehab centre and it usually lasts for about a week. Although this timeline depends on how addicted the patient is to meth.

Detox which is an abbreviation for detoxification is aimed at removing the addictive substance completely from the body. It usually precedes rehab. In a way, it readies your body for addiction treatment. During detox, what happens is that medications are used to reduce the withdrawal symptoms.

Furthermore, there are specific medications for certain withdrawal symptoms. For instance, Advil is usually administered to patients with body pains. Below are the withdrawal symptoms and the drugs administered.

  • Psychosis: Sedatives and antipsychotic drugs such as Risperidone and Olanzapine.
  • Anxiety: Diazepam and lorazepam are types of Benzodiazepines used in treating severe addiction.
  • Body pains: Acetaminophen which is commonly referred to as Tylenol can help ease body pains. Also, Ibuprofen, which can be otherwise referred to as Advil helps to relieve mild ache.
  • Depression: Fluoxetine (Prozac) and  Bupropion are antidepressants. These drugs can suppress depression during meth withdrawal. Also, Imipramine and Mirtazapine are antidepressants used to treat depression during meth withdrawal.
  • Cognitive abilities: Bupropion, Modafinil and Topiramate (Topamax) help to improve cognitive ability during meth detox.
  • Sleep and cravings: Narcolepsy drugs such as Modafinil can help with meth addiction withdrawal. Modafinil has stimulant effects which can help with sleepiness and cravings.

rehab center

What to Expect during Meth Addiction Rehab and Treatment

There are two major types of rehab treatment for methamphetamine and they are:

  • In-patient Rehab program.
  • Out-patient Rehab Program.

In-patient rehab program

Addiction specialists recommend in-patient programs most especially if there are fears of relapses. During in-patient programs, you’ll be put under close medical supervision. In some cases, doctors may try to conduct the detox process together with in-patient programs.

In-patient programs have all the necessary facilities to quicken the recovery process. The close supervision and daily treatment sessions characterized by in-patient meth rehab programs increase your chances of recovery.

Part of what to expect during this form of methamphetamine rehab is a disconnect with the outside world. During in-patient programs, the staff at the rehab prohibit patients from having contact with the outside world.

The sole aim of this prohibition is to prevent relapses that come with triggers. Hence, in-patient programs help patients recognize their methamphetamine triggers and control them. Common types of in-patient therapy sessions include:

  • Group sessions:

Here you will discuss with other patients in the rehab, each patient will share their addiction experiences. Group sessions are very effective since you’ll get to relate and learn from other patients who are battling methamphetamine addiction too.

  • Individual sessions

During individual sessions, you’ll get to speak to counsellors who have considerable experience helping meth addiction patients. Through these sessions, you’ll be able to uncover behavioural patterns that promote meth abuse. Perhaps more importantly, you’ll be able to develop methods to break these patterns.

Moving on, a typical day in rehab is not only full of counselling sessions. There are sessions of mind-building activities like yoga and meditation. All these activities aim at strengthening your mind and keeping it busy.

Out-patient rehab program

For patients that do not have severe methamphetamine addiction cases, out-patient programs are a better option. A common feature to expect during this form of meth rehab is accountability. You’ll have to visit the rehab at appointed times for monitoring.

The challenge with out-patient rehab programs is that patients are still in contact with their triggers. Once patients are still in contact with their triggers, gaining sobriety can be challenging. It is why doctors suggest an out-patient program for people without a serious level of meth addiction.

Like in-patient rehab, it also includes programs like group counselling and teaching sessions that will help patients recover quickly.

Typically, out-patient programs take an average of 12-hours weekly. So, seeing all these, you should know what a typical day in rehab is like.

Counselling as a Part of Meth Addiction Rehab

Counselling is an important part of rehab. During counselling, counsellors apply different approaches and techniques to help addicts deal with problems. However, some approaches are more effective than others.

Furthermore, in combination with these approaches, addicts will undertake structured or formal counselling. Although, you should note that these counselling sessions are usually after dealing with withdrawal symptoms. Here are different types of counselling to expect during meth rehab.

Cognitive behavioural therapies

In this type of therapy, the counsellors will help you understand what triggered the meth addiction. Also, they’ll help you learn new coping mechanisms and correct old ones. This helps in preventing relapse. Here are other benefits of CBT.

  • CBT is effective in addressing problems associated with crystal meth addiction. It is also the most extensively evaluated counselling approach.
  • Cognitive behavioural therapies strive to correct thinking errors and behaviours that instigated crystal meth use.
  • Cognitive behavioural therapies are very effective in addressing some mental health problems like depression and anxiety. These problems are also withdrawal symptoms making counselling important for meth rehab.

Other common behavioural therapies include:

  • Family education
  • Individual counselling
  • 12-step programs
  • Family counselling
  • Drug testing

Solution-focused therapies

Solutions-focused therapies use the addicts’ strengths to solve the addiction problem.

Narrative therapy

This therapy emphasizes the importance of the addicts’ life stories. This approach helps addicts realize their stories can shape how they think and act.

Support groups

Support groups provide fellowship and support for meth addicts. Through the platform offered by support groups, meth addicts can interact with others going through the same recovery process. When this happens, meth addicts will realize they aren’t alone in their journey. Also, support groups help patients to focus on their treatment.

Although many meth addicts don’t like support groups, others find it comforting to hear other addict’s stories. Finally, combining support groups with counselling can prove very effective in achieving sobriety.

Motivational incentives

To foster meth addiction recovery, a motivational incentives approach can also be used. In return for their abstinence from meth use, patients are given rewards like money.

Related Article: How Crystal Meth Ruins Your Life Unless You Seek Help

To Sum It Up

Our rundown of what to expect during methamphetamine rehab shows that it’s not a scary prospect. The first stage, detox, typically lasts for a week or less and helps to prepare patients for treatment. While it lasts for a week for most, in some cases, detox can last for two weeks.

With this knowledge of how methamphetamine rehab works, you can get the best out of your treatment program. Arming yourself with how detox and counselling works can help make the recovery process easier.

Finally, depending on your preference, there are inpatient and outpatient programs to choose from. Inpatient programs ensure you are monitored round the clock. They are a comprehensive approach to rehab that allows you to focus on your recovery, pick up healthy habits and have a change of environment.

Here at 1000 Islands Rehab Centre, our experts can provide a custom treatment plan to guide your meth rehab journey. With us, you can build the key tools you need to enjoy long-term sobriety. Book an appointment to discuss your options today.

Methamphetamine Addiction

Methamphetamine Addiction Treatment Costs: Is It Worth It?

How Much Does Meth Treatment Cost in Toronto?

The cost to treat methamphetamine addiction depends on the type of treatment services you need in Toronto. Each person is peculiar when it comes to addiction treatment. Hence, you cannot be sure of an exact cost until you properly consult with a meth rehab in Toronto.

This is why the first step towards addiction recovery is always the most important. When you get to meet a drug rehab in Toronto, you get an idea of pricing for methamphetamine addiction treatment. Several factors influence this pricing. Some of these factors are within your control, and most aren’t.

You should know that no matter what your budget is, there is always a package for you. Hence, you don’t have to avoid drug rehab in Toronto because you think you can’t afford it. You simply need to do your due diligence in finding the right addiction rehab center for you in Toronto.

One of the ways you can pay for addiction treatment is insurance. How much insurance covers is dependent on what your coverage looks like. Canada have government-funded medical insurance policies like Medicaid and medicare. You can also have your private financing insurance.

Generally, the following payment structure is what you’ll encounter with meth rehab services in Toronto.

Meth detox process cost in Toronto

The cost for drug detox in Toronto ranges between $1000 and $1500. However, if you are an inpatient, this is already included in your addiction treatment cost. Outpatients have to pay for drug detox separately.

Inpatient meth rehab pricing in Toronto

The cost to treat methamphetamine addiction in inpatient rehabs in Toronto ranges between $6000 and $30000. More popular rehab centers may average $20000 for 30 days. However, if you’ll need up to 60 to 90 days, the cost may rise to $12000 and $60000.

Outpatient meth rehab cost in Toronto

For a 3-month, most outpatient rehab in Toronto costs about $3000. Others may also cost as high as $10000. The pricing for methamphetamine rehab in Toronto depends on how long you are coming in for therapy.

Medications cost

On average, medications may cost you about $4700. Needs are always peculiar. Hence, the medications the doctor administers to you may differ from your friends. Don’t make the mistake of using your friend’s prescription.

Factors Influencing the cost of meth treatment

Several factors influence the cost to treat methamphetamine addiction. These factors are also not the same for everyone.

Rehab center location in Toronto

If your house is close to the rehab center in Toronto, especially for an outpatient, you get to save big on transport. This is different for someone that has to travel miles. Also, the location of the facility itself matters.

Drug rehabs situated in city centers will normally cost more than those in the suburbs or rural areas.

Pricing based on therapy sessions

The processes and needs for individual meth rehab stunts will differ. Hence, your cost will be a reflection of all you need. If you’ll be needing more therapy sessions for addiction and an extended detox program, you’ll have to pay more for meth addiction treatment in Toronto.

Duration of treatment cost

How long your meth treatment continues determines how much you pay. Payment is calculated per month, generally. And most meth rehab periods last between 30 and 90 days. However, you may require more than this, which translates to extra costs.

Rehab center facility pricing

The facility of the rehab center in Toronto plays a major role in the cost to treat methamphetamine addiction. Some meth rehab centers are built to reflect luxury, where you will pay more. Others are designed for low-income earners. Hence, there is a limit to the level of amenities you have access to.

Related Article: How Much Does it Cost for Sober Living in Toronto?

Meth treatment costs: Is It Worth It?

The cost to treat methamphetamine addiction in Toronto may seem high. But when you look at it in the long run, it costs less than a life of constant meth abuse. It is possible to lose everything, including your life, to meth addiction. You don’t want to be that person.

The first best step you can take is to sign up for a proper consultation with a meth addiction treatment facility. Here at 1000 Islands Rehab Centre, we offer affordable pricing for addiction treatment programs. Contact us today to discuss your options.

Boy taking Methamphetamine Addiction

What is Methamphetamine Addiction about?

There are several names for methamphetamine among users. From “glass” to “shards” to “ice”, “meth” or “tina”. This flurry of slang names is to tell you that the substance is widely consumed. The names attached to methamphetamine all have origins. For instance, “shards” and “glass” are from the fact that the substance looks like shards of glass crystals.

In the drug usage world, meth is common. The reason for this is that its effects hit hard and fast. The euphoria that follows its usage is intense. The intensity of this euphoria causes addiction to occur very fast.

Amongst drug substances, meth has a high fatality rate. Over the years, there has been an increasing number of deaths associated with the substance. The ease of production of the substance is a major problem.

There are several methods to the consumption of the substance. In the long run, these various consumption methods influence the cost to treat methamphetamine addiction. This influence is because different consumption methods breed different degrees of addiction within a period. You can either smoke, swallow or inject crystal meth.

What effects do meth users seek?

One common place where you’ll find users of crystal meth is parties. It helps the users stay awake and alert for longer periods. The effects of meth on the user can last between 6 to 8 hours at the minimum. However, at a maximum, the effects may take about 24 hours to wear off.

Meth is an illicit drug that belongs to the same class as cocaine and other drugs. It is used by persons of all ages, but just as dangerous as you can imagine.

In the first few times of use, it works well as a stimulant. However, that marks the beginning of gradual degradation of the user’s life.

You should know that meth is mainly made as a controlled prescription for the treatment of ADHD. The substance is a stimulant of the central nervous system. However, there are street versions of it that are illegal and can be very dangerous. That is the substance this guide is about.

Meth is white, odourless, and has a bitter taste. When placed in water or alcohol, it dissolves easily. The simplicity in everything about meth is what makes it versatile. Its users are of different age groups and both genders. As simple in concept as the drug is, it is highly addictive.

The high addiction-tendency of the drug is due to the degree to which it boosts the neurotransmitter called dopamine. When this substance is released in the brain, there is an increase in chemical activity. This activates several areas of motor function, motivation, reward, and pleasure.

This high activity of the drug is why you don’t have to be addicted to the substance before showing signs of abuse. Even if you take it in small amounts, you can show the following signs:

  • Euphoria
  • You feel invincible
  • You suffer from insomnia
  • Hallucinations
  • Constant itching
  • Rotten and decaying teeth
  • Hyperactivity
  • Twitching, facial tics
  • Paranoia
  • Dilated Pupils
  • Agitation
  • Skin sores
  • Mood swings
  • Burns
  • Sudden weight loss

Due to the high activity of the drug, you can get addicted after first use. Meth addiction is a disastrous condition, though not irreparable.

How much you incur for a meth addiction treatment then depends on how bad your condition is. The longer your addiction, the more chronic and lethal it becomes. Hence, you need to get help as soon as possible, irrespective of what it’ll cost to treat methamphetamine addiction.

Side Effects of Meth Use and Addiction

There are several reasons why incurring the cost to treat methamphetamine addiction is worth it. Meth is dangerous not only because it causes addiction faster. A larger portion of the substance remains in your body without changing. The substance also persists in the brain long after use.

This prolonged presence can lead to the damage of brain cell synapses. This is what results in the dependence on the drug. Beyond the signs and symptoms, real health damages (short-term and long-term) can result from continuous meth use.

Some of the short-term side effects that can result from meth use are

  • Anxiety
  • Chest pain
  • Increased heart frequency
  •  Anorexia
  • Aggression
  •  Itchy skin
  • High body temperature
  • Insomnia.
  • Overdose.

Overdose results commonly from the use of meth and can lead to heart stroke, heart attack, and seizures. If you don’t treat this overdose immediately, it can lead to failure of internal organs and even death.

The required cost to treat meth addiction, in the long run, is always high. This is because the long-term problems of substance use can stack hastily. Researchers found that after a long period of use, the brain begins to create a need for using the drug. Long term users suffer from the following;

  • Respiratory problems
  • Heart diseases
  • Failure of the liver
  • Arrhythmias
  • Kidney Failure
  • Malnutrition
  • Premature ageing
  • Reproductive issues
  •  Seizures
  • Birth defects
  • High blood pressure
  • Impaired cognition
  • Loss of memory
  • Cardiac death
  • Depression
  • Delusion
  • Psychosis
  • Aggression


Methamphetamine Addiction

Is Your Loved One On Crystal Meth And How Can You Help?

Are you wondering how to help a loved one on crystal meth? You may find it particularly disturbing to resort to such. However, if your loved one is caught within the tendrils of crystal meth, you have to do something to help.

Many experts have revealed that helping anyone get out of drug addiction requires deliberate and systematic steps. It also involves getting all the information you can and then applying it directly.

That is what we are here to help you with. In this article, we will dig deep into what makes crystal meth special as a drug of addiction. We will then uncover ways you can help a loved one deal with crystal meth abuse, including interventions and rehab programs. Let’s get started.

What Is Crystal Meth And Why Is It So Unique?

Methamphetamine is otherwise referred to as crystal meth, meth, blue, or ice. It is a highly addictive chemically produced drug that releases dopamine into the human brain. This stimulant appears as a white coloured powder with no taste and dissolves rapidly in water and alcohol.

Dopamine is a chemical released when a person is doing something they love or enjoy. For example, singing your best song, watching your favourite television show, being with someone you love, eating your favourite meal, and so on.

When you take crystal meth, it releases ten to twelve times the normal amount of dopamine in the brain. You may wonder how a person will feel if they have ten times the usual amount of dopamine in their brain. The saying “I feel on top of the world”, is in no way close to describing how meth addicts feel.

Now, you will understand why meth is described as an extremely scary drug. Except in special circumstances, the immense pleasure derivable from meth will most likely make a person ask for more. It is termed to be a “once and forever” drug because it takes professional intervention to help a loved one on crystal meth.

Interestingly, meth is not a natural drug. It is derived from the combination of many other drugs and items. You can purchase the ingredients from a drug store and cook them together to produce meth. Producing meth leads to a very toxic product consumed by sniffing, snorting, or injecting.

Compared to other street drugs, meth has many “benefits” that make it highly consumable. For one, meth is cheap and easy to access. A meth addict can easily go into the production of meth and even start selling it. Of course, this will only help an addict ingrain the habit and even make fast money through it.

This illegal drug originated from the parent drug amphetamine in the early 20th century. The parent drug was originally dispensed for nasal decongestant and bronchial inhaling. However, meth is different from amphetamine in that it is stronger and has a more long-lasting effect on the brain.

Related Article: What is Meth Addiction?

Understanding Why Your Loved One is on crystal meth

Drugs are generally used as a way to escape negative feelings. Your loved one may have undergone some traumatic event that they cannot deal with properly. While this is no excuse to turn to drugs, it might help you understand your loved ones’ state of mind.

Crystal meth use is very common. In fact, according to the NCBI, it is the second most widely used illicit drug after marijuana. This fact implies it is easy to find and also particularly enjoyable to consume. So when you wonder why your loved one has taken solace in crystal meth, this may just be the reason.

Understanding how they got into it will better help you know how to approach them on the subject. Regardless, a general rule for handling a case of addiction is to throw all judgment away. In the subsequent sections, we will discuss how you can do that.

Signs of Meth Addiction

Usually, if you’re considering that someone you love is using crystal meth, it’s because you have noticed a couple of things. Signs of meth addiction range from physical signs to behavioural signs. Like any other addictive drug, crystal meth harms the body and mind of an addict.

Visible physical signs include:

  • An untidy and unkempt look
  • Dilated pupils with rapid eye movements
  • Profuse sweating
  • Erratic or twitchy body movements
  • High body temperature
  • Dental issues like tooth decay (peculiar to meth users)
  • Facial twitching
  • Talking too constantly and rapidly
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss
  • Frequent itching of the body
  • Obsessively picking at the hair and skin
  • Lack of sleep and inconsistent sleeping patterns
  • Sores on the face and skin
  • Intense headache

These signs may result from the use and abuse of other drugs, although their likelihood of them surfacing from using crystal meth is very high. They may also be due to other genuine underlying medical conditions.

While you may use these signs to suspect your loved ones of meth use, you should be careful. If they feel accused and wrongly at that, they may feel alienated. This then makes it even more difficult to get them help.

Psychological or behavioural signs are also crucial when considering if someone you love is using crystal meth. You will likely see a strong turn in a person’s behavioural pattern once they start using crystal meth. These signs include:

  • Anxiety, nervousness, irritable behaviour, and disability
  • Unpredictable aggression and violence
  • Anger or mood swings
  • Hallucination: Seeing, hearing, or believing in things that are aren’t there
  • Hyperactivity, higher energy, and restlessness
  • Psychotic behaviour, stress, and bipolar disorder

Whenever someone using meth becomes sober temporarily, he or she will experience symptoms such as:

  • Extreme fatigue
  • Uncontrollable and intense depression
  • Extreme irritability and instability

Consequences of Not Helping a Person on Crystal Meth

You must take steps to help a person with a meth addiction immediately you notice it. Meth is a particularly powerful drug. It has significant effects on the brain because it reshapes the structure of its user’s brain.

Experts have spoken of how crystal meth has the most significant effects on the brain than other illicit drugs. It markedly reduces the number of neurotransmitters in the brain.

This eventually manifests as problems with impulse control as well as focus. Beyond the physical and mental effects, the drug consequently affects social behaviour.

It is not uncommon for meth addicts to be unable to hold down their jobs. This gets compounded since they are compelled to use all their finances to get another fix. There is also potential legal trouble since meth use in Canada is illegal.

If your loved one is caught up in all of these, they may find themselves in a lot of trouble. Generally, the earlier you tackle the problem, the easier it is to solve it. So you should put out all the stops to find them all the meth addiction treatment they need.

How To Help A Loved One On Crystal Meth

Once you have identified your loved one’s problem, the next step is to provide help and support. However, if you do not know how to help them, your efforts may be more harmful than helpful to your loved one.

Research and learn about crystal meth

You cannot offer help to your loved one without knowing enough about their problem. Thus, the foremost step is to learn about crystal meth addiction. This will give a better insight into what your loved one is dealing with, how the person feels, and the reasons for the addiction.

Having gained an understanding of the problem, the next step is the solution. This entails knowing how to help a loved one on crystal meth during, before and after their treatment. On a personal note, this will help you know how much of your time, energy, and care the loved one will need.

Furthermore, discovering that someone you love is using crystal meth can be mentally draining and physically exhausting. The learning process will give you enough time to calm down and recover from your own pain to help the recovering addict.

Work with professionals

You will agree that getting the help of a professional in any task you embark upon can, in many ways, make things easier. The same goes for issues with crystal meth addiction. Talking to a professional is a very important step in helping a loved one on crystal meth.

Aside from the knowledge that can be easily acquired online, talking to a professional can help to get tailored solutions to your loved one. From experience, a professional can dissect the reasons and processes that led your loved one into becoming an addict. From this, you will get specific advice on how to help your loved one on crystal meth.

Also, as mentioned above, crystal meth addicts are prone to violence and aggression. Thus, be it a therapist, psychologist, psychologist, or interventionist, it is essential to speak to someone. This professional will give first-hand tips on how, when, and where to address the addict. It will protect the family and friends of the addict from any harm that can be indirectly caused by the addict.

Most importantly, a professional is a better person to teach you how to persuade the loved one on crystal meth to seek help. Once that is done, a huge part of the problem has been solved.

Talk with compassion — avoid confrontation

Talking to an addict about their addiction is a crucial and delicate step. To an addict, this seems like a form of attack or show of displeasure in their way of life. You have to tread softly, so the efforts don’t go south. A crystal meth addict can easily resort to violence and even severe ties with the persons confronting them.

Consequently, certain tips must be strictly adhered to when talking to a loved one on crystal meth. For one, don’t speak to a crystal meth addict whenever they are high on the drug.

As established, no one is in their right senses after using crystal meth. Thus, that is the worst time to speak to them. Target a time when the drug would have worn off and use that opportunity to address the person.

Also, avoid being confrontational in any way while trying to help a loved one on crystal meth. Confrontations usually lead people to become defensive and divulge little or no information. Speak to your loved one in the kindest possible way. Help them feel safe and comfortable talking to you.

You can achieve this by talking about something completely different for a start. Talk about their favourite television show, songs, food, so they can feel very comfortable.

You can also have discussions around the good memories that were created before they ventured into using meth. This will help them remember what their life looked like before the addiction.

Once this is done, you can proceed to tell them all you’ve noticed in the nicest possible way. Tell them how much you are bothered about them and the signs of meth addiction you’ve noticed. Talk about the particular things you’ve noticed, and remember to reiterate how much you care.

Remember that you are not expecting a response. You are simply trying to remind them of the person they were before the addiction. So, do not push the conversation for too long till a crystal meth addict becomes uncomfortable.

Be Patient and non-judgmental

Remember that it took more than just one sniff or consumption to become an addict. Yes, it starts with a trial, but addiction only happens after several instances of abuse. This is the same way just one conversation cannot change a crystal meth addict.

You must exercise patience while helping a loved one using crystal meth. Give enough intervals between discussions with an addict about their addiction and remain kind. Know that it will take some time before they can open up to you about it.

A crystal meth addict may exercise different emotions while talking to you about it. They may display anger, denial, or aggression. They may also pass a few remarks or grudgingly say a few words.

Whichever response your loved one displays, be patient, and don’t be judgmental. Helping a loved one out of crystal meth addiction requires lots of patience, which you must exercise.

Pay Enough Attention and Listen

Addictions generally occur when the addict is at their lowest and needs something to feel better. Often, knowing what led a person into the addiction can be enough of a trigger to snap them out of it. You have to pay attention to your loved one and listen to every word carefully to figure this out.

A loved one using crystal meth may not easily disclose the reasons behind their addiction or unwillingness to stop. But if you pay enough attention while showing you are willing to listen, the chances of an addict opening up increases.

Once a crystal meth addict starts to talk, you must listen. You must listen attentively and not interrupt them while talking. You should neither invalidate their feelings nor give unsolicited advice. Make eye contact and give genuine smiles to keep them talking. By listening, you will better understand your loved one’s special circumstances and how to help.


It is important for a recovering meth addict to learn the importance of getting help with crystal meth addiction. This may not happen immediately because it usually takes a while before a meth addict can realize that something is wrong.

The process of recovering is what brings a meth addict to sobriety. But remaining sober is up to the person. It is a universal truth that no one can love someone more than oneself.

This saying comes to play here as no one can care for the addict as much as they can. A recovering addict should be interested in learning ways to deal with crystal meth abuse.

A recovering meth addict should be ready to put in all the work necessary to heal and recover completely. This requires discipline, perseverance, and self-care. This may mean losing relationships with friends or peers that introduced the person to the habit. It may help to change the environment, live with supportive persons, or join a support group.

In the process of recovering, your loved one can make a lot of progress through listening to the stories of persons who have had similar experiences. A support group offers that opportunity to a recovering addict. Here, a recovering addict feels safe enough to share their struggles, listen to others, and be more inspired to recover.

Thus, no matter how much you wish to help a loved one on crystal meth, this cannot happen without the person’s cooperation. Teaching them to see the need to fight this addiction will go a long way in dealing with crystal meth abuse.

Conducting a crystal meth addiction intervention

An intervention is a vital step in helping a meth addict. Because of how sensitive addicts are, you should make sure you have a professional on hand during the intervention.

You can expect to be in the intervention for many hours. So, you should make plans for a conducive setting. You must also properly consider the timing of the event.

If you can manage, get the family and loved ones together and hold a rehearsal. It may seem trivial, but emotions usually run high at interventions. This makes it easy to get off course.

With a rehearsal, everyone prepares what they will say and how they will say it. So the intervention becomes more effective.

It is also crucial to manage your expectations. You should not imagine a big change right after your intervention. It is even much safer to expect some resistance from your loved one. But you must be ready to try again until you are successful.

Related Article: How To Stop Meth Addiction

Treatment Options for Meth Addiction

We cannot discuss how to help a loved one on crystal meth without considering possible treatment options. Most effective options for treatment involve behavioural therapies.

A hybrid treatment exists, which encompasses individual counselling, family support, and behavioural therapy to counteract the addiction.

You may not see many drugs in use as a treatment. This is because there are no known drugs that can directly oppose methamphetamine or prolong abstinence. However, your loved one may be given drugs to help with the side effects of the drug.

Your Loved One Is Getting Treatment: What Next?

No guide on how to help a loved one on crystal meth goes on without emphasizing support. That is the most important thing in the whole spectrum, from talking to them to getting them into treatment.

Your loved one with an addiction needs to know you are there for them wholeheartedly. This doesn’t stop even after they have agreed to go for treatment.

You may offer to take them to their therapy session if they are on an outpatient basis. If they have to be in the rehab center to get better, you should make frequent visits and always reassure them.

Many recovery programs incorporate family and friends because of their importance in rehabilitating a crystal meth addict. You can take advantage of such arrangements to prove to your loved one that you support them.

However, as much as you provide support to your loved one, you should remember to take care of yourself. Dealing with someone with an addiction has its highs and lows.

So while you are providing support, take breaks as often as necessary. This is to make sure you are in the best position to be the best help to them.

Final Take

There is no doubt that recovery from crystal meth addiction is possible. All you need to know is how to help your loved one with the addiction. You must also psych yourself up and be determined to get them out of the habit.

If you are ready to begin your loved one’s recovery, you should check out our addiction treatment services. Here at 1000 Islands Addiction Rehab & Treatment Centre, we have an array of experts who will work round the clock to help get your loved one back into shape and live a drug-free life. Contact us today!

Methamphetamine Addiction

How Crystal Meth Ruins Your Life Unless You Seek Help

There is no need to wonder how crystal meth addiction can ruin your life. There are many examples of it around, from entertainment celebrities to sports stars. You may also have seen a loved one coworker go down the dumps due to drug addiction.

While this is not to scare you, it reminds you that drug addiction is dangerous. But luckily, there are now new ways to get the better of it.

There are quickly evolving measures to help reduce the effects of crystal meth abuse. There are also new and effective treatment options available to you.

With this interesting read, we will show you the negative effects of meth addiction on your life. More importantly, we will provide a roadmap that can help you get freedom from crystal meth abuse.

Facts About Crystal Meth

Methamphetamine is the chemical name for the highly addictive and potent drug called crystal meth. Methamphetamine has several slang names, like crystal meth, meth, blue, and ice, amongst many others.

Meth often appears in the form of a crystalline white coloured powder and sometimes in chunks resembling ice. Over time, it has been observed to appear in other colours, including pink, yellowish gray, brown or orange. Crystal meth can equally be condensed and produced to appear in the form of a pill.

Crystal meth has a relatively strong odour. It is often perceived to have the smell of paint. At other times, it is a combination of many chemicals that gives the effect of the commonly known “hospital smell.” It can equally give the smell of ammonia or vinegar. Smoking crystal meth can reduce the effect and give a rather subtle odour.

How does crystal meth work?

Crystal meth, as a psychostimulant, releases dopamine into the human brain while giving no room for inhibitors. Crystal meth is not naturally produced as it is derived from the combination of several drugs and items.

These items can be purchased from a drug store and cooked together to produce meth. Methamphetamine addiction usually occurs by sniffing, snorting, injecting, swallowing or ingesting orally.

Crystal meth is also consumed by smoking directly through a glass pipe. These methods of administering crystal meth give it quick contact with the brain and bloodstream.

The chemical released by the brain after Amphetamine use is called dopamine. Usually, it occurs naturally when a person engages in a hobby or something they love. This chemical makes a person feel good about whatever they are doing.

However, when you use meth, your body goes above and beyond when releasing dopamine into the human body. Compared to the natural occurrence, crystal meth spurs the release of ten to twelve times more dopamine than normal. This drug leaves an immensely pleasurable feeling that occurs immediately and lasts 15 to 20 minutes.

It also explains how crystal meth can easily ruin your life as just a few intakes can keep you addicted to it “forever.” Meth has been described as an extremely scary drug as it often takes the intervention of a professional to keep it from ruining your life.

Origins of crystal meth

Despite the difficulty producing at that time, methamphetamine was first developed in Germany in the year 1887. A Japanese chemist reduced the major ingredient in methamphetamine called ephedrine in the process of crystallization. This produced a crystallized form that birthed crystal meth.

This stimulant was used in World War II by both sides to keep their soldiers awake. Many doses of the stimulants were prescribed to Kamikaze pilots before their mission.

However, it did not stop at that. The demand for crystal meth increased beyond the war. Such demand even rose after it had been banned in the United States in the year 1970.

The crystal meth consumed today came into existence in the 1980s. People on the streets started taking to laboratories or their houses for production.

This was done with white rocks or bluish crystals, adding twice the amount of ephedrine to make it more potent. Access to ephedrine and pseudoephedrine was easy at the time. They were found in many legalized drugs that can be purchased over the counter, like cough medicine.

Methamphetamine is a stimulant that has been legalized for use in medicine today. This is only to treat obesity or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Plus, it is available only on prescription by doctors.

Prevalence of crystal meth abuse

There are generally different reasons to be motivated to use crystal meth. For instance, anyone sinking into depression can easily use crystal meth because of its ability to enhance mood. You may also be attracted to the drug because of the increased libido and the sexual pleasure that comes with it.

Crystal meth is highly consumed in every part of the world. About half a million Americans used crystal meth every week. Interestingly, statistics from the NCBI show that an average of 12.3 million Americans claim they have consumed crystal meth at one point or the other.

Comparison with other kinds of drugs

Meth, unlike many other drugs, is cheap and easy to access. This also gives room for ease of production by an addict who is interested in producing the drug. Many times, meth addicts who go into production also become dealers.

Also, unlike many other drugs derived from natural plants like tobacco, crystal meth is relatively artificial. It is cooked with a mixture of several chemicals, which makes the effects of crystal meth stronger than most other drugs.

Signs that crystal meth is ruining someone’s life

The ways in which crystal meth will ruin your life is not subtle. It becomes easily apparent when a person is on the drug.

This is because certain physical and behavioural signs will be visible to people around a crystal meth addict. Visible physical signs include:

  • An untidy and unkempt look
  • Dilated pupils with rapid eye movements
  • Profuse sweating
  • Erratic or twitchy body movements
  • High body temperature
  • Dental issues like tooth decay (peculiar to meth users)
  • Facial twitching
  • Talking too constantly and rapidly
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss
  • Frequent itching of the body
  • Obsessively picking at the hair and skin
  • Lack of sleep and inconsistent sleeping patterns
  • Sores on the face and skin
  • Intense headache

While these physical signs may be the product of other health issues, the probability of these signs surfacing in a crystal meth addict’s life is very high.

Psychological or behavioural signs are also very important when considering how crystal meth can ruin your life. You will likely see a strong turn in a person’s behavioural pattern once they start using crystal meth. These signs include:

  • Anxiety, nervousness, irritable behaviour, and disability
  • Unpredictable aggression and violence
  • Anger or mood swings
  • Hallucination: Seeing, hearing, or believing in things aren’t there
  • Hyperactivity, higher energy, and restlessness
  • Psychotic behaviour, stress, and bipolar disorder

How Crystal Meth Can Ruin Your Life

The effects of using crystal meth are so grave that it can, in many ways, ruin the life of any person using it. There is no positive consequence accompanying the use of crystal meth.

There are immediate damages to the brain, body, skin while there are long term effects. If a meth addict is not careful, the use of crystal meth could lead to death.

Short term

  • Instant addiction: One of the most immediate effects of crystal meth is its ability to cause an instant addiction. As a result of the potency of the drug, just a few doses are needed to ask for more continually
  • Financial problems: Except for a person dealing in crystal meth, anyone consuming crystal meth will soon find him or herself in a state of bankruptcy. This is because of the financial impact that accompanies the regular high consumption of crystal meth.

Even for a dealer, the impaired judgement that comes with meth use leaves little space for good financial decisions. Before long, you may be without a home and food to eat.

  • Effect on personal relationships: A crystal meth addict will begin to show signs of withdrawing from those around. As time goes on, most personal relationships will be destroyed, leaving the person in a state of loneliness.

Meth abusers are generally violent, a behaviour unacceptable to loved ones. It may also get so bad as to lead them to untoward acts like child abuse and infidelity. This easily leaves such an addict quickly estranged from family and friends.

  • Sexual dysfunction: Though users of crystal meth claim to have a heightened and pleasurable experience while having sex, this is short-lived. A crystal meth addict is prone to experiencing sexual dysfunction.

Also, some studies have linked crystal meth use to impotence. This makes the drug of no benefit to anyone sexually.

  • Outward appearance: A person using crystal meth begins to care less about the kinds of clothes to put on and how to appear in public generally. People easily shun them as they generally look repulsive.

Meth users also tend to hallucinate meth mites. They constantly feel like insects are crawling on them. This leads them to scratch a lot, developing sores and scabs on their body. In the end, this only adds to the repulsion.

  • Loss of weight: Anyone on crystal meth consumes less food as time goes on because they have virtually no appetite for food. This leads to loss of weight, a skinny body and a weak immune system.

Long term

  • Effects on the Brain: Crystal meth has an instantaneous effect of releasing a lot more dopamine into the human brain than normal. However, this is the least of it all.

Crystal meth can ruin the life of an addict by subjecting him to brain damages. Diseases like dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and so on easily come on.

It can also lead to a major restructuring of the brain that affects a person’s emotional and cognitive behaviour. Long term use can equally destroy a person’s brain’s nerve terminals and white matter.

  • Effect on the body and skin: Ways by which crystal meth can ruin your life includes long term destruction on the skin. Crystal meth addicts can begin to look older and have sores over the body, possibly leading to infections.

Many times, they lose the elasticity of their skin, making it look haggard. This can also lead to the development of illnesses like fibrosis, fatty liver disease, coronary artery atherosclerosis, etc.

  • Effect on mental health: People using crystal meth experience mental health issues after the doses taken have worn off. This can lead to depression out of loneliness, inability to experience joy in their lives or other psychological problems.

This may be as a result of frustration, irritability, paranoia, nervousness and mood swings. Crystal meth usage can also lead to anxiety. This anxiety usually comes as a result of crystal meth intoxication and subsequent withdrawal.

  • Severe health implications: Using crystal meth can lead to severe health implications like high blood pressure, increased body temperature, failure of the heart, diarrhea, constant headache and migraine, insomnia and so on.
  • Legal trouble: Crystal meth is an illegal drug that has been banned in most parts of the world. Thus, anyone on crystal meth risks ruining their life by being caught by the authorities and possibly thrown into jail.
  • Prone to Sexually Transmitted Diseases: Crystal meth addicts are more likely to engage in risky sexual behaviour. Of course, it means their chances of catching a sexually transmitted disease increases.
  • Effect on dental health: Anyone using crystal meth is easily prone to tooth decay, gum disease, toothache, and so on. The condition is called “meth mouth” and is very specific to meth addicts. It may lead to losing teeth and destruction of the dental system in gravest cases.
  • Methamphetamine psychosis: Chronic usage of crystal meth can easily ruin the life of an addict by leading to psychotic episodes like schizophrenia.

Seeking Help For Meth Addiction

Many addicts don’t seek help until too late.  The reason for this usually comes down to 3.

  • Denial: You may have been denying that you have a problem. Many times, drug use starts because of some other problem, a failed relationship for example.

By turning to drugs, you may get relief. However, you will not notice when the drugs begin to contribute and worsen the problem.

It becomes dangerous when you are unable to identify the impact of the drugs. Of course, since you don’t think it is a problem, you will not seek help for it.

  • Shame: You may have realized the problem. But you don’t seek help because of the stigma attached to addiction. You do not want to be labelled an addict.

If the shame gets too much, you may feel like you do not deserve any help. This then makes it difficult for you to ask for help.

  • Fear: There may also be a fear of what happens if you seek help. Rehab isn’t usually a pleasant experience and detoxing often comes with a lot of discomfort.

The fear of going through this may hold you back from seeking help. Furthermore, you may not want to relive some past painful experiences through therapy.

In contrast, you may have gone to rehab before and relapsed. All these add up to make you so scared to want to commit again.

Now that you have no doubts about how crystal meth can ruin your life, you should only do one thing. Seek help. You may not be as aware, but it is possible to make a full turnaround from your addiction.

It often seems like a myth. It may feel like one, too, with how hard your body craves the drug. But research reports are proving that recovery from addiction is possible. With expert methamphetamine addiction treatment, you increase the chances of making a full turnaround.

If you want to get better, it starts with you.

  1. You must be convinced of how crystal meth has ruined your life, or at least almost has. In your non-high state, think back to how you were before you started.

Evaluate your relationships with your loved ones. Examine your productivity and work and your finances. Check how healthy you are.

If you can spot an obvious difference, which will likely be there, then your addiction is well on its way to affecting your life. So, you have to make a conscious choice to get better, as no one can be as convinced for you.

  1. Believe that you can actively get better. You may read about your condition to learn more about it. Learn about what drove you there. Also, when you read reports of studies done to evaluate success rates, it may help you feel more confident.

Even while reading about such, you may not think it can happen to you. With that, you need to shore up confidence. The best way to do that is to go in to see a professional.

  1. Addiction is generally serious business. This means you cannot do it alone. One of the first steps in how to seek help for crystal meth abuse is to get your loved ones involved.

The most likely thing is that your loved ones will have noticed the changes in you. So don’t be surprised when they react more calmly than you expect. But also be sure of their love for you and their wish for you to get better.

  1. As your addiction counsellor may tell you, going through recovery is not usually an easy process. The stronger the addiction, the more difficult the recovery. This is why it is better to seek help as early as you can.

With this, you need to have a strong commitment to it. During recovery, you may have a strong urge to want to use again. You may even relapse. Recovery is usually a life-long journey, so you should not get discouraged. As long as you keep recommitting to it, you will get better.

Recovering From A Meth Addiction: Available options

One of the ways crystal meth can ruin your life is to leave you with a mental illness. This is apart from the regular bad effects of the drug. If you have a pre-existing mental illness, crystal meth abuse can make it significantly worse.

Because there is both a substance abuse disorder and possible mental involvement, the treatment options for meth addiction in Canada are different. A comprehensive treatment plan will include a mental assessment and treatment for it.

The options available to you are listed here.

Medical Detox

This is usually the first step when seeking treatment. It involves cleaning out the crystal meth of your body. The long-term use of the drug will have made your body dependent on it. So your professional will want to get the drugs cleared out.

Medical detox isn’t usually an easy process. Very likely, you will develop withdrawal symptoms, which are generally unpleasant. You may go through it, whether as an inpatient or an outpatient.

However, it is essential to have medical personnel present. It also leads to better success rates. Furthermore, having a professional around will make detoxing easier. They can prescribe medications to help your body adapt better without meth,


This is often the next step after detoxing. Counsellors can help you understand the reasons why you got into the habit. They also make clearer how crystal meth can ruin your life if you continue to indulge.

Cognitive behavioural therapy

The focus of this method is to modify your behaviour to help you recognize your meth abuse triggers. With it, you realize how you react to certain things, making you resort to drugs. You are then able to leave such behaviour, and consequently, become and stay healthy.

This method of cognitive behavioural therapy is one of the most effective methods available. With it, you can rest assured that you are well on your road to recovery.

The Matrix Model

Another method that may be used is the Matrix Model. This model is a 4-month long treatment that uses behavioural therapy while involving your family by educating them properly.

It is usually a 12-step process that includes frequent drug testing. You are also encouraged to engage in activities unrelated to drug use.

Contingency Management Intervention

This is also another of the available options for treatment. It involves using incentives to encourage an addict to get treatment and continue staying away from drugs.

It is usually not used alone. You will expect to continue undergoing therapy. All these come together to help prevent crystal meth from ruining your life.

Get Freedom From Crystal Meth

Since you have read to this point, you know how crystal meth can ruin your life. But it is not all doom and gloom. You can get better and recover completely. The sooner you seek help for your addiction, the better your chances.

Our meth addiction treatment services are top-notch. We have a long line of experienced professionals who have helped many to recover.

More importantly, we can design custom meth addiction treatment programs to fit your unique needs. Contact us today to get started!

Methamphetamine Addiction

Methamphetamine Addiction: These 7 Facts Will Help You Quit Using for Good

There are several Methamphetamine addiction facts that many people do not know despite how viral the drug has become. If most people had this information, finding the motivation to quit may become relatively easier. Therefore, if you have been trying to stop using meth, but you cannot seem to do so, this article is for you.

Methamphetamine is easily one of the most dangerous and addictive controlled substances out there today. Typically used as a party drug, you can get hooked on meth from your very first use. Not just that, the continuous use of the drug results in severe damage on both physical and psychological levels.

Indeed, chronic meth use can cause significant health problems such as rotting teeth, respiratory issues, and even organ failure!

Compared to other drugs, methamphetamine addiction can quickly overshadow every other aspect of a person’s life. Therefore, if you are struggling with meth addiction, or you know someone that is, the best time to get help is now. 

However, if you’re still thinking, ‘is meth that bad?’ we understand your reservations. So, we’ve come up with a way to help you see the truth about methamphetamine addiction.

We’ve created a compilation of some of the top less-known methamphetamine addiction facts and their consequences. We find that reading these facts may help you reach a conclusion to seek help for your addiction.

In the next few paragraphs, we will share insight into what methamphetamine is and why it is addictive. More importantly, we will reveal some surprising facts about methamphetamine addiction that can push you to quit. To top it all off, you will also discover some tips on managing meth addiction and where to get help.

What is Methamphetamine?

meth addiction

Right off the bat, methamphetamine is a human-made and very addictive drug that affects the nervous system upon use. It is a derivative of amphetamine and other chemicals. Of course, the substance is illegal. Sadly, the drug’s stimulating effect and its affordability can quickly cause users to develop a meth addiction.

Interestingly, meth has been around for quite a while, almost a century, to be precise. During the Second World War, soldiers used to take meth to keep them awake and alert.

In the times that followed, meth was legally available for public purchase and use. You see, the drug proved to be effective in treating nasal congestions and bronchial respiratory issues. But, in no time, many people started abusing the drug for its stimulant effects on the body. Unsurprisingly, in 1970 the FDA restricted the use of methamphetamine and classified it as Schedule II controlled substance.

Methamphetamine is primarily a party drug as it induces a quick rush of euphoria after use. You see, the substance causes a flood of dopamine (happy chemicals) in the brain. 

It may also lead to feelings of confidence and never-ending energy. These effects are undoubtedly the reason for widespread meth addiction in Canada and the rest of the world.

The drug exists in two distinct forms – in clear crystal pieces or blue-white chunks. However, there are several nicknames that meth goes by on the streets. Here are some of them:

  • Ice
  • Speed
  • Glass
  • Crank
  • Crystal
  • Chalk

Users may choose to either snort, smoke, or inject meth with a needle. Another option is to dissolve it in a drink or to swallow it whole. Injecting or smoking the drug induces an almost immediate rush that lasts for a few minutes. 

However, snorting and oral use will not cause a rush. But, users report a euphoric high within five minutes after snorting and about twenty minutes for oral administration.

Upon use, the effects of methamphetamine use usually last between six and eight hours. However, in some cases, the drug may last as long as twenty-four hours. This is relatively long if you compare it to the duration of ‘high’ other substances give.

Today, there are only two legal uses of meth products – in the treatment of obesity and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). Even at this, doctors rarely prescribe methamphetamine due to its highly addictive effects.

Unsurprisingly, it is usually very challenging to quit methamphetamine addiction. You see, the drug can permanently affect some areas of the brain, particularly the pleasure zone. We frequently see this in long-term users. 

When this happens, it becomes increasingly difficult to feel any form of pleasure and happiness without using it. We’ll dive deeper into this when we explore methamphetamine addiction facts.

Related article: What Is Methamphetamine Addiction?

Is Methamphetamine Addiction Like Every Other Addiction?

At the base level, methamphetamine is indeed like every other addictive substance. However, what most people do not know is that it’s worse. You see, due to the intense nature of meth-induced highs, it has an extreme effect on the brain and body. 

The physical and psychological toll methamphetamine takes on its users easily qualifies it as one of the most dangerous substances today.

Let us briefly share one of our methamphetamine addiction facts with you now. Meth is essentially a potent chemical poison that masquerades as a stimulant. Of course, users will testify to its intense stimulating effects when they use it. But right after, the chemical starts destroying and breaking down the body.

The drug burns through the body’s resources and creates a disturbing dependence that only more of it will satisfy. At this point, you may start experiencing a loss of interest in aspects of your life that were once appealing to you. For instance, your career, relationships, and even family may seem less important than the prospect of your next fix.

In this light, methamphetamine addiction is indeed like every other addiction. But, there is a twist. Meth uniquely interacts with the body.

You see, methamphetamine is arguably the most dangerous stimulant because a significant proportion of the drug stays unchanged in the body. Indeed, in twelve hours, your body will only get rid of 50% of the meth you’ve taken. This means that the remaining percentage of the drug will remain in the brain and lend a ‘high’ for extended durations.

This characteristic of meth is why its effects can last as long as 24 hours, unlike other substances.

Of course, this is also why it is decidedly difficult to quit methamphetamine addiction. After all, the brain has more time to interact with the substance and has gotten used to the feeling. 

But we have good news for you! Like every other substance addiction, there are established procedures on how to treat meth addiction. So, yes, you don’t have to struggle with methamphetamine use forever.

Are you wondering if you have a methamphetamine addiction? Here are some questions you can ask yourself:

  • Are you using meth in situations where you constitute a danger to yourself and others? For instance, driving under the influence or using too much.
  • Are you neglecting family, professional, personal or academic commitments?
  • Do you experience social problems due to your meth use?
  • Have you experienced withdrawal symptoms when you tried to stop using meth?
  • Do you find yourself using more and more amounts of methamphetamine? (You may be developing a tolerance)
  • Are you investing significant amounts of time and money into meth abuse?
  • Are you forgoing activities or hobbies in favour of meth use?
  • Do you experience methamphetamine cravings?

If your answer to two or more of the above questions is yes, then you may indeed have an addiction. However, help is not far. Getting the methamphetamine addiction treatment you need in Canada is only one decision away from you.

methamphetamine addiction

Why is Methamphetamine So Addictive?

Do you know that a meth user can get hooked on their very first try? The reason is simple – methamphetamine is highly addictive. Let us quickly explore some methamphetamine addiction facts. Here is why the substance is highly addictive:

  • It is very potent. One of the several reasons meth is so addictive is because of its potency. Indeed, taking only a small hit of meth smoke can cause a very intense high in the user.
  • The body develops tolerance very fast. Due to the potency of meth, the body will build both physical and mental tolerance against it quickly. Therefore, on their second trial, a person will need more meth than they took their first time to experience the same high.
  • The high is intense. Meth offers extreme but relatively short highs. As such, when the high starts to clear, an individual begins to ‘chase the high.’ This is essentially the beginning of their drug-seeking habit.
  • It causes intense and seemingly uncontrollable cravings. When the cravings start, it becomes significantly challenging to resist drug use.
  • Its withdrawal symptoms are decidedly uncomfortable. Most people start using methamphetamine in increasing amounts to avoid the discomfort of experiencing withdrawal.

Can I Quit Methamphetamine?

If you are battling with a meth addiction, you’ve undoubtedly had thoughts about whether or not you can quit it. Well, we can tell you right now – you can indeed stop using. 

However, it will not be easy. Indeed, one of the facts about methamphetamine addiction is how difficult it is to break free. But, with the right help, you can stop using this substance for good.

Quitting methamphetamine takes a significant amount of willpower and dedication. Yes, you will need to invest a lot of time and effort into getting better. 

But, when you commit to the process, eventually, you will see positive results. That will then be all the incentive that you need to keep going on your journey to lifetime addiction recovery.

Sadly, some people lack a reason or motivation to quit methamphetamine addiction. For the most part, this is due to the drugs’ feel-good effect, which dulls accurate thinking. However, the truth is there are a million and one reasons to quit meth use. Knowing these reasons is the first step towards achieving a meth-free life in the long run.

To help you see this truth, we have compiled some methamphetamine addiction facts. We’ll also show the implications of prolonged use of meth on your health. You see, by understanding how dangerous meth addiction, it becomes easier to decide to quit. For most meth users, this is a difficult realization to come by due to the drug’s brain-warping effect.

If you fall into this category, this next section is for you. In the following paragraphs, we will reveal critical information about methamphetamine addiction that may help boost your motivation to get help. However, you must note that having the desire to quit is not the endgame. You must seek professional help on how to manage meth addiction.

That said, keep reading to discover some shocking facts about methamphetamine addiction.

7 Methamphetamine Addiction Facts That May Surprise You

If you are looking for reasons to quit, then these methamphetamine addiction facts may be what you need. Here are some astonishing details about the drug:

Meth can cause permanent damage to your brain

You probably already know that methamphetamine induces dopamine release (the ‘happy’ neurotransmitter) in your brain. 

Indeed, this is what is responsible for the feeling of euphoria that is common with meth users. However, you likely did not know that the drug is potentially dangerous to the nerve points in your brain.

Prolonged methamphetamine use can destroy the synapses of your brain cells where dopamine production occurs. In other words, the drug permanently alters the chemistry of your brain with respect to pleasure response. 

If this happens, you may find it difficult to derive pleasure from any activity if you’re not using it. At this point, such a person has become dependent on the drug to be happy or have fun.

Meth addiction increases the chances of heart problems and stroke

Here is another one of the methamphetamine addiction facts you should know. People who use meth are more likely to develop a heart condition or even suffer a stroke. 

You see, chronic methamphetamine use may cause irreversible changes to various systems in your body. One of these systems is the circulatory system (essentially the heart and the blood vessels).

Some of the common complaints of people with meth use disorders are high blood pressure, chest pain, and irregular heart rhythm. If left unchecked, these conditions may deteriorate and lead to even more severe heart conditions. 

Such people may experience intense aortic dissection, a heart attack, or cardiac death! Moreover, increased blood pressure also raises the chances of stroke and fast atherosclerosis.

Now, here is the scary part – heart and circulatory complications do not affect only longtime users. A first-time meth user may experience a heart attack due to the intense high.

It increases the risk of Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson’s disease is the medical term for a movement that affects the central nervous system. The symptoms of this condition usually worsen over time. Now, let us examine it in relation to methamphetamine addiction.

Experts have found that prolonged meth use can affect the body nerves that aid movement. When this happens, patients may find that they experience limited movement in some parts of their bodies. 

Other times, it manifests as a loss of control in that area of the body. This is undoubtedly the result of a complication of the neurological effects of methamphetamine.

Sadly, these effects may not seize even when a person quits the drug. But, with proper care, they can get better.

Chronic meth use can cause tooth decay and other dental problems

Next on our methamphetamine addiction facts, we have meth-induced dental problems. You’ve probably heard the term ‘meth mouth’ in association with longtime methamphetamine users. Well, it’s true. 

Many meth abusers usually end up with one tooth problem or the other (usually tooth decay). However, the truth is, it is not the meth itself that’s directly responsible for these problems.

But, here is the fact. Meth use can cause dry mouth due to under function of the salivary glands. Furthermore, many methamphetamine users develop a bad habit of clenching and grind their teeth due to nervous ticks. 

All these, coupled with a lack of proper dental hygiene, can lead to an array of dental issues, especially tooth decay.

Methamphetamine overdose can be lethal

Meth is one of the leading causes of death resulting from substance overdose. You see, one of the effects of methamphetamine is that it drastically raises the body temperature of its user. 

Now, with increasing doses of the substance, the possibility of an overdose increases. If a person overdoses on meth, more often than not, they will pass out.

When this happens, internal organs may shut down due to overheating. In this case, death may occur with proper medical attention. Indeed, this is a significant risk for longtime users. 

This is because their bodies have developed a meth tolerance, so they have to increase their dosage ever so often. Unfortunately, with ever increased dosage, the chances of an overdose are more vivid.

Meth often contains harmful impurities

If the effects of methamphetamine do not worry you, perhaps you should take a look at the drug’s constituents. There is quite a long list of chemicals that go into the production of meth. 

Some of these substances include lithium batteries and even drain cleaner. So, at the end of the day, the produced meth may contain as many as thirty-two different chemicals.

Since meth is illegal, there is no formal body to regulate the production and specifics of its contents. Unfortunately, some of these chemicals may be harmful to the body on their own.

Even worse, some meth manufacturers ‘cut’ their meth with other substances, so they can make more profit. Some of the additives they use include opioids and anxiety meds. These and other unknown chemicals may cause dangerous complications for the end-user.

Methamphetamine addiction is treatable

Finally, on our methamphetamine addiction facts, we have the most crucial point of all. Methamphetamine is treatable, and you can get the help you need today. Like every other substance addiction, it is possible to quit meth for good. However, the road to recovery is a long and challenging one. But with the right help and some effort on your part, you can get better.

Thankfully, we have a methamphetamine addiction treatment centre here in Canada with a team of experts ready to help. So, if you’ve been struggling to quit using meth, you don’t have to do it on your own. 

In fact, with the intense withdrawal symptoms that methamphetamine can induce, it is not advisable to do it alone. We find that seeking professional help is usually the most effective route.

Some Tips on How to Manage Meth Addiction

Quitting methamphetamine addiction is not easy, and we understand that. However, you also will not get better if you do not make some crucial decisions in your life. Here are some tips on how to treat meth addiction:

  • Seek professional medical help.
  • Get yourself a support system.
  • Get rid of any methamphetamine paraphernalia.
  • Try to avoid places and friends that may trigger you to use again.
  • Pick up healthy habits and hobbies to distract yourself from cravings.
  • Engage in regular exercise and make sure to sleep well.
  • Stick to a healthy diet.

Wrapping It All Up

We hope that our methamphetamine addiction facts have helped you put things in the right perspective. Remember, when you prolong your meth using habits, you may be worsening the effects the drug has on your mind and body. Therefore, the best time to seek help for methamphetamine addiction is now.

Understandably, it may be daunting to face the prospect of withdrawal symptoms and cravings. But, it cannot get better until you do so. Not worry, we have experienced professionals ready to guide you on your journey to freedom from methamphetamine addiction. Call 1000 Islands Addiction Rehab & Treatment Centre for addiction treatment programs.

Related article: How to Stop Methamphetamine Addiction

Methamphetamine Addiction

How to Stop Methamphetamine Addiction

Knowing how to stop methamphetamine addiction is a critical piece of information. In no time meth can take over a person’s life. The rate at which it works is higher when you compare it with other substances. This higher reaction rate makes addiction to the substance very easy. Upon addiction, it becomes tough to stop the habit that ensues from its use. 

Beyond the rate at which it takes effect, meth also lasts longer in the body. It creates a feeling of euphoria that stays with the patient for long periods. This surreal effect it puts the brain’s pleasure center through can be detrimental. In no time, the brain begins to depend on it for the release of dopamine.

However bad your addiction condition may be, you can overcome it. Though it takes hard work on your part, meth addiction treatment is possible. In this in-depth guide, we explore the various steps to meth addiction recovery. We also take a deep dive into every other thing you need to know about achieving long term sobriety from meth addiction.

What is Meth Addiction and its Symptom?

It seems untrue, but a single use of Meth can result in addiction. That’s how powerful the substance is. Hence, to prevent addiction, the best way is to avoid its use. Meth is an addictive stimulant, and it produces a rush of dopamine in the user. This induced substance results in a feeling of pleasure, motivation, rush for learning, etc.

This advent of dopamine is way more than the brain naturally produces. As a result of this, people find it very difficult to stop using the substance. For most users, the use of the drug persists for days. This translates to the user being ‘high’ all through this time. This results to intolerance, as the person then requires higher doses, in search of satisfaction.

Thanks to the drug being very affordable, addiction comes very quickly. At this point, the individual finds it hard to stay happy without using the substance. Beyond this quest for happiness, other symptoms point out that you are addicted to methamphetamine.

  • Hyperactivity
  • Paranoia
  • Skin sores
  • Twitching
  • Rapid eye movement
  • Agitation
  • Erratic sleeping patterns
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Outbursts or mood swings
  • Dilated pupils
  • Weight loss
  • Rotting teeth
  • Burns

Methamphetamine Addiction

There is no particular order to which you may experience any of these. However, identifying the condition is the first important step to meth addiction treatment in Canada

What are the Triggers of Meth Addiction?

Your will is also an essential factor in how to stop methamphetamine addiction. Using the drug, just like any other, can result from triggers. Hence, you need to have a will to avoid these triggers. These triggers can be people around you, conditions, environments, or emotional issues. More often than not, it is impossible to avoid these triggers. This is because, most times, daily life factors can be a trigger.

Just about anything can be a trigger for a meth relapse. However, the following are the most common and identified triggers:

  • Stress from the job
  •  Mental health issues
  • Problems in relationships
  • Isolation
  • Paraphernalia
  • School issues
  • Peer pressure
  • Stress from everyday life

These triggers most times, interfere with meth addiction treatment. Hence, as much as possible, during recovery, ensure that you avoid these triggers. 

Related article: What Is Methamphetamine Addiction?

Damaging Effects of Using Meth

While researching how to stop methamphetamine addiction, note that its resultant energy surge is false. It gives you a temporary feeling of well-being, causing you to overexert your body. However, the continued use of this drug can result in a sudden crash or breakdown.

The continuous use of methamphetamine reduces the feeling of hunger. This ultimately results in a drastic weight loss. Also, meth can result in the sleep patterns of the individual. Other short-term effects that may result from the use of meth include;

  • hyperactivity
  • nausea
  •  irritations
  • delusions of power
  • aggression
  • confusion
  • hallucinations
  • anxiety
  • paranoia

There are also some long-term irreversible effects that meth use can cause. Before getting to this stage, you should figure out how to stop using meth. At these irreversible stages, death can occur if you don’t take care. The long-term effects are;

  • Damage to your liver, lung, and kidney
  • Damage to the brain, which is similar to Alzheimer’s disease
  • Total and irreversible damage to the blood vessels of the brain and heart. This ultimately results in high blood pressure that leads to heart attack and death.
  •  Destruction of tissues in the nose
  • The advent of infectious diseases
  • Damage to the respiratory system
  • The decay of the tooth
  •  Confusion
  • Depression
  • Malnutrition
  •  Psychosis

As scary as these effects sound, they are imminent for meth addicts. However, just like any other drug out there, there is a recovery process. As stated earlier, the tips for quitting methamphetamine addiction only works with your will. Hence, it would help if you were resolute on your decision to quit. 

Methamphetamine Addiction

How to Stop Using Meth

Stopping the use of meth is known as withdrawal. It starts once you decide not to indulge in the substance again. There is no unique way to stop using the substance than to stop. However, it is a very uncomfortable process. 

In most cases, addicts find themselves relapsing even when they don’t want to. That’s because of the nature of the drug. In this section, we explore everything to know on how to stop methamphetamine addiction.

The timespan of Meth withdrawal

According to experts, there are two significant phases of meth withdrawal. The very first of these stages takes about 24 hours from the moment of withdrawal. This stage is usually between the early 24 hours after using the meth. Once you get through this stage, it becomes less severe with time.

Different factors influence how severe meth withdrawal is. For instance, how long have you been using the substance? How much of it have you used over time? How dependent are you on the substance? The age of the individual also determines how adverse the symptoms will be.

The second stage of withdrawal symptoms lasts for about two to three weeks. In some cases, it can last for months. Withdrawal symptoms that last this long are known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PWAS).

Signs and symptoms of Meth withdrawal

Just like any other drug, the body reacts when you withdrawal the substance. These reactions differ in different people. However, some reactions are known to be common to meth withdrawals

  •  Anxiety: This is the most common reaction from persons going through meth withdrawal. The rates are very high in individuals. This is because of the dependence the body now has on the substance.
  • Fatigue: The use of meth will cause you to feel surges of energy. Upon withdrawal, going back to the average energy level makes you very weak. You feel intense fatigue, and you feel like sleeping.
  • Depression: Depression is also common for people trying to get off meth. All things being equal, you should stop feeling this after the third week.   
  • Psychosis: This is also possible, causing you to start seeing, hearing, or feeling things. It also occurs even when using the substance.
  • Meth cravings: During withdrawal, you are prone to longing so much for the substance. This craving can seem uncontrollable. This causes most people to relapse.
  •  Increase in appetite for food: The use of meth always causes anorexia – loss of appetite – in persons. Hence, when you stop using the substance, you start to want more food. This improved appetite may last for up to three weeks.

All these may seem too much, leaving you to wonder how you’ll cope with meth withdrawal.

How to cope with meth removal symptoms

Coping is an essential factor in how to stop methamphetamine addiction. When you get your coping skills right, you can avoid (incessant) relapse. Here are some things you can do to cope

  • Exercising: When you exercise, it helps you cope with your anxiety.
  • Distract yourself: When you notice that your craving is getting intense, it is best that you find something doing that takes your time and effort.
  • Stay clear of triggers: Though this is near impossible, as much as you can, avoid situations that trigger your craving. You may need to change friends or the environment.
  • Eat Healthily: Healthy eating is perfect for you at this stage. Withdrawal restores your appetite, so eat well, moderately.

How to cope with meth removal symptoms

What are the Steps to Meth Addiction Recovery?

The journey on how to stop methamphetamine addiction is not an easy one. It’s a flurry of stages that requires different approaches and individuals. With the help of excellent medical personnel, you’ll be able to scale through. 

  • Acceptance: This is the most crucial stage for any addiction. You need first to accept that you are addicted.
  •  Intervention: This is a sensitive stage, and it requires a careful approach from friends and family. This stage is when friends and family try to get you into rehab.
  •  The Program: There are two types of rehab programs you can take — either the inpatient or the outpatient. But the inpatient option is the best. Here, health professionals can easily control the conditions you are exposed to as you recover.
  •  Detox: This is the stage where the substance is eradicated from the body.
  •  Counselling and therapy: Once the removal symptoms are doused, counselling, and therapy sessions help you rest. These sessions focus on coping and how to deal with different trigger situations.
  • Support: This is a crucial step in how to stop methamphetamine addiction. This is because it aims to integrate you successfully back into everyday life. It can involve support groups or your friends and family.

FAQs on Meth Addiction

Here are answers to some questions you may have on meth addiction.

What is the effect of using meth and alcohol?

Using both substances separately comes with adverse effects. However, when you use both together, the results can be lethal.

How long does meth stay in the body?

After using meth, its effect can remain in the body for about 24 hours or more.

Can meth kill?

If you take meth at a very high dose, it can lead to high blood pressure and stroke. These can lead to death.

Can meth kill

Final Take

There are different types of how to stop methamphetamine addiction. However, the best of them is that you should see a specialist. Once you start with the realization that you need help, seek it. Seeking timely help can help you recover before it gets too late.

Here at 1000 Islands Addiction Rehab & Treatment Centre, we can provide you with the tools and knowledge you need to achieve long term sobriety from meth addiction. Contact us today!

Related article: Methamphetamine Addiction: These 7 Facts Will Help You Quit Using for Good

Methamphetamine Addiction

What Is Methamphetamine Addiction?

Methamphetamine is a powerful central nervous system stimulant that generates a euphoric sensation that can last for as long as several hours. It can be ingested orally as a tablet, intravenously, snorted or smoked. The exact answer to what is methamphetamine addiction depends on the method of ingestion.

When smoked or used intravenously, methamphetamine is absorbed into the bloodstream very quickly, and its effects can be felt within minutes.  Although methamphetamine addiction in Canada is less prevalent than several other addictions, some communities are seeing increases in use. Meth-related deaths have increased over the last few years in British Columbia, Manitoba, and Alberta.

Why Is Methamphetamine So Addictive?

Dopamine is a naturally occurring chemical released by the reward centres of the brain. It is dopamine that makes us feel good when we have a good workout, spend time with loved ones, or accomplish something. When the brain releases dopamine in response to natural stimuli, the levels increase, and then slowly subside to their previous level. The gradualness of the drop helps with the regulation of our mood.

Like other stimulants, methamphetamine causes an unnatural surge in dopamine, which results in a euphoric feeling that goes beyond “normal” happiness. The problem is that instead of subsiding gradually, after a period of time the dopamine levels drop abruptly. 

This can create effects that are so undesirable that the user feels the need to use more drugs. One of the first signs of methamphetamine addiction is the user putting relationships, career and recreational activities on the back burner and devoting all available time, energy and money into getting and using drugs.

What Is The Danger Of Methamphetamine?

Danger Of Methamphetamine

Methamphetamine can cause significant harm even if used only once.

Unknown Composition

Unlike many other drugs that have natural origins, methamphetamine is created in illegal laboratories that do not follow any health and safety guidelines. The ingredients vary from one meth lab to the next, but many of the substances commonly used are considered toxic to humans. 

Examples include acetone, ammonia, and hydrochloric acid. These ingredients can cause unpredictable, dangerous symptoms, and the fact that the composition is unknown can present challenges for first responders who are trying to help in the event of an overdose.

Short-Term Effects Of Methamphetamine Use

In addition to the surge of euphoria, methamphetamine users are attracted to the fact that it generates energy and alertness for a period of time. A flurry of activity often follows methamphetamine use, in which the user gets a lot of things done in a short period of time. 

When the effects wear off, though, the user experiences a crash – that sudden drop in dopamine – that leaves them feeling exhausted and depressed.

Short-term methamphetamine use has other harmful effects, including the following:

  • Increased respiration
  • High core body temperature
  • Rapid or irregular heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety
  • Flushed or itchy skin
  • Muscle twitches
  • Risk of overdose that can result in organ failure and death

Long-Term Effects Of Methamphetamine Use

Long-Term Effects Of Methamphetamine Use

Prolonged frequent use of methamphetamine can have serious long-term implications, including nerve damage in the brain, leading to cognitive impairment and poor memory that can persist for a long time after drug use stops. Methamphetamine use also carries a risk of stroke, which can result in varying levels of brain damage.

Other long-term effects include:

  • Paranoia, hallucinations and other symptoms of psychosis
  • Impaired motor skills
  • Aggressive or violent behaviour
  • Anxiety, depression, agitation, and other mood disturbances
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Liver and kidney failure
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Seizures
  • Dental problems, which can lead to other health issues
  • Damage to the nasal cavity resulting from snorting
  • Damage to the lungs and mouth resulting from smoking, combined with an increased risk of respiratory diseases
  • Intravenous use can cause blockages in and around the brain, heart and liver, as well as infection of the heart tissue
  • Shared needles increase the risk of HIV and hepatitis

Meth Babies

Meth Babies

Since methamphetamine use results in significant weight loss, women who use meth are at risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery. These include poor growth of the fetus, and fetal hypoxia, or insufficient oxygen supply to the fetus. 

As a result, the baby is at risk of being born with a low birth rate and a high risk of neurodevelopmental issues. Long-term consequences for the child may include impaired cognitive abilities, poor fine motor skills, and behavioural challenges. Some so-called “meth babies” are born with signs of methamphetamine addiction and require medical care during withdrawal.

Related article: Addiction Treatment Services: What are Your Options?

What Are The Signs Of Methamphetamine Addiction?

There are several signs of methamphetamine addiction that you can look for in yourself or a loved one. This is one of the most difficult addictions to treat, and one of the most dangerous substances to be addicted to, so the sooner you seek help, the better.

The symptoms of meth abuse include the following:

  • Twitches and tics
  • Reduced appetite and rapid weight loss
  • Skin sores, blisters around the nose and mouth, or burns on the lips or fingers
  • Mood swings, agitation, and outbursts of violence
  • Hyperactivity, jittery energy, and infrequent sleep
  • Deteriorating dental health
  • Dilated pupils and/or rapid eye movement
  • “Tweaking”: a period at the end of a drug binge that is characterized by hallucinations, confusion, a tendency to display violent behaviour, and intense cravings for more drugs
  • “Crashing”: a 1-3 day period in which the user sleeps for long periods of time and experiences severe depression

If you or your loved one shows two or more of the following criteria, you can be formally diagnosed with a methamphetamine use disorder, and should seek meth addiction treatment as soon as possible:

  • You continue to use methamphetamine in spite of the immediate danger to yourself or others
  • You neglect responsibilities at home, work or school
  • You experience relationship breakdowns resulting from your drug use
  • You take more drugs in order to achieve the same effects
  • You experience withdrawal symptoms after a period of abstinence
  • You have tried unsuccessfully to stop using methamphetamine
  • Large blocks of time are spent acquiring or using meth, or recovering from use
  • Your physical and mental health is suffering as a result of meth use
  • You experience cravings when you do not have access to the drug
  • You lose interest in previously enjoyed activities and pursuits

Meth Addiction Treatment

It is never too late to seek meth addiction treatment. At 1000 Islands Addiction Rehab & Treatment Centre, we offer top quality inpatient treatment and rehab that is fully customized to each individual. Because methamphetamine withdrawal can be overwhelming and uncomfortable, your treatment will start with medically supervised detox.

In the early stages of detox, you may feel exhausted, paranoid and depressed. Our medical staff will keep you safe throughout this process, and when you regain the appetite lost during your period of use, we will ensure that you are given nutritious meals so that you can attain a healthy weight and regain your strength. 

When the drugs have worked their way out of your system, you will be ready for the rehab phase of treatment. Using a combination of treatment methods including group and individual therapy, music and art therapy, mindfulness coaching and more, we will gently guide you through the process of exploring and resolving the root causes of your addiction, repairing your relationships with loved ones, and learning how to cope with the stresses of life without needing to use drugs or alcohol. 

When your time in our inpatient facility is over, we will continue to support you through our comprehensive aftercare program, so that you can enjoy a long and happy life that is free from drugs. To get started, call us at 855-601-0555.

Related article: How to Stop Methamphetamine Addiction