Modern estimates now show that there are over 24 million regular meth users in the world, and this is a number that’s bound to get worse before it gets better. While countless organizations attempt to battle meth addictions before they ever take place, it’s important for everyone to educate themselves on the effects of meth on the body and mind. This extremely powerful stimulant will negatively impact almost every aspect of an individual’s life, and an addiction could become life-threatening if not treated immediately.
The Physical Effects of Meth Abuse
Much like cocaine or any other stimulant, using methamphetamines of any type will have both immediate and long-term effects on the body. Meth can be taken in a variety of manners including orally, dissolved in liquid, snorted, smoked and injected. The dose of meth taken, how it’s taken and the purity of the meth will have an effect on the immediate physical changes. Primarily, the individual will have a burst of energy that can last for days on end, depending on the severity of the binge. Friends and family members may notice constant movement, twitching eyelids, dilated pupils, shortness of breath and an increased heart rate. Higher doses can result in seizures, convulsions and death.
The long-term effects of meth will also differ slightly depending on how often the drug is taken and the manner in which it’s taken. Most often, those close to an addict will notice deteriorating hygiene habits, the presence of calluses, open sores if injecting the meth and lesions on the skin. This type of stimulant is also an appetite suppressant that often results in weight loss and vitamin deficiencies. This will increase one’s risk of becoming sick, developing dental decay and a variety of other medical issues that are common in those with deficiencies.
The Mental and Psychological Effects of Meth Abuse
Any foreign chemical that’s abused for an extended period of time will begin to have an effect on one’s brain chemistry. When these chemicals are taken, they stimulate certain parts of the brain and glands to produce energy and feelings of euphoria. As time goes on, the body will begin to build a tolerance to the substance, which means that more meth must be taken in order to have the same effect. The body will essentially “forget” how to produce natural chemicals that lead to feelings of happiness, contentment and a balanced energy.
In a relatively short amount of time, an addict will begin to experience mental side effects such as short-term memory loss, irritability, panic attacks and psychosis. When coming off of meth, many users will experience extreme depression, suicidal thoughts, hallucinations, confusion and overall exhaustion. The most effective method to combat these feelings and break free from an addiction is to contact an addiction and rehab specialist as quickly as possible. Professionals at the 800-447-9081 hotline can help addicts overcome the effects of meth on the body and move forward in a safe and healthy manner.