- Personal Health Information & Self-Help
The Use Of Methamphetamine
Methamphetamine (aka Amp,crank,crystal,speed,white cross/crunch,La Glass) is a white, odorless,bitter tasting crystalline powder that easily dissolves in water or alcohol. It's taken orally,snorted, injected by a needle or smoked. It has more neurotoxic affects than cocaine, heroin or alcohol. It is a highly addictive stimulant that dramatically affects the central nervous system.
Methamphetamine use leads to dopamine transporter reduction. Dopamine transporter reduction is associated with motor and cognitive impairment. Methamphetamine also affects circuit's in the brain not associated with or regulated by dopamine and are consistent with inflammation throughout the brain. This reduction is much grater than with the use of cocaine, heroin or alcohol.
Dopamine transporters help transport used dopamine. This contributes to the feelings of satisfaction and pleasure back into the nerve cells that produce it which terminates the pleasure signal. These changes are long lasting and result in long term impairment of memory and motor controls such as motor speed and coordination.
The intense euphoria which is known as the "RUSH" that many users feel when they inject, snort, or smoke it is actually killing there brain. Methamphetamine changes your brain functions especially after chronic use. It reduces motor control functions, increase metabolism in the brain causing inflammation. It impairs your verbal speech and controls your emotions.
Individuals that use methamphetamine once in a while will experience increased wakefulness and heightened physical activity. They will have a decrease in appetite, increased heart rate and blood pressure. Individuals that are chronic users will have severe weight loss, tooth decay, loss of teeth, major dental issues, mouth sores, body sores, confusion, anxiety, insomnia, mood swings and even violent behavior. Some chronic users will even experience episodes of psychotic paranoia, become delusional, hallucinate, speech problems and involuntary muscle spasms. Methamphetamine can also cause a person to make irrashional and unsafe decisions. It can alter ones judgment due to its toxic affect on the brain. Chronic users can also face disease such as hepatitis C,B and HIV, to name a few that are most common from sharing dirty needles and unprotected safe sex. Chronic users may also resort to prostitution,burglary and other such crimes to collect the money needed to supply their habit. A user that lives with you can also lead to disturbances in the home by there behavior. They might steal money, personal belongings from you, commit fraud with your name and may become violent in the home. All to support there addiction.
Many people turn there backs on family members and friends that have a methamphetamine addiction. This is at a time that the person needs your guidance and support the most. Even if it seems like all hope is lost. Please get them into a treatment program as soon as possible. You will be saving there life.
APublicity funded treatment facilities by state www.findtreatment.samhsa.gov.