Methamphetamine is one of the most dangerous and destructive drugs on the streets, especially when it is used in the form of crystal meth. People who abuse this drug can quickly become addicted and experience the extreme side effects that come with meth abuse. The longer a person abuses methamphetamine, the more severe the symptoms of this drug will be.
Oftentimes, when a person begins to abuse a drug, his or her loved ones and friends may not realize what is happening until the abuse has escalated to addiction. However, due to the extreme toll methamphetamine takes on the mind and body, meth abuse may be noticeable almost immediately after a person begins using it.
A few of the many signs that may become noticeable when a person begins abusing meth include:
1. Physical Symptoms
People who abuse meth will often begin to experience the physical side effects of the drug quickly. Weightloss, rotting teeth, and acne or sores are among the most common physical symptoms experienced by people who abuse methamphetamine.
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Additional physical side effects of abusing meth include:
- constant scratching or itching
- droopy facial skin
- weakened immune system
- increased sex drive while on the drug
- dilated pupils
- flushed skin
2. Unusual Behavior
Methamphetamine can cause a person to act in an unusual way that is often noticeable to loved ones. For example, a person on meth may be paranoid or delusional and may have intense energy and alertness. He or she may also go for days without sleeping and have a decreased appetite. People who abuse meth also often have extreme mood swings that can range from euphoric to hostile in a short period of time.
3. Drug Paraphernalia
Many people who abuse methamphetamine do so by using various types of drug paraphernalia. This may include needles, syringes, metal spoons, smoking pipes, or rolled-up dollar bills. All of this can be used to smoke, snort, or inject meth and may mean that someone is abusing the drug.
4. Withdrawing From Friends And Family
People who abuse meth will likely begin to withdraw from friends and family in order to hide their drug use and be able to abuse the drug more frequently. Some individuals abusing meth may start to only hang out with other people who also use meth or completely isolate from loved ones.
The more severe a meth addiction becomes, the more likely a person is to isolate themselves from friends and family. If your loved one is withdrawing from activities with family and friends that he or she used to enjoy, he or she may be abusing a drug like meth.
5. Financial And/Or Work Problems
Abusing meth can quickly lead to both financial problems and trouble at work or school. Someone may begin to spend all of his or her money on obtaining meth and may take off more days from work or school in order to use the drug.
People who abuse meth may sell their possessions or steal money from loved ones in order to buy more of the drug. They may also not be able to pay their bills or other financial requirements due to their methamphetamine addiction.
Dangers Of Abusing Methamphetamine
In addition to the above-discussed signs and symptoms of methamphetamine abuse, there are other dangers involved with abusing this drug. The most obvious danger of abusing meth is the risk of addiction. Due to meth’s highly addictive nature, individuals who abuse the drug even only once or twice are at risk of becoming addicted to it.
Unfortunately, meth abuse and addiction only increase a person’s risk of experiencing the dangers of the drug. Meth works as a stimulant, but unlike other stimulants, large amounts of meth remain unchanged in the brain and body. Meth also remains in the system longer, allowing it to wreak havoc on the body and mind in a short period of time. This drug is toxic to the nerves and can result in permanent changes in the brain which can affect a person’s mood and ability to function.
Long-term meth abuse can result in dangerous and even deadly health effects.
- heart disease
- respiratory problems
- kidney failure
- infections of the skin
- high blood pressure
- memory loss
- sudden cardiac death
Meth is a highly addictive and dangerous substance that can quickly and permanently wreak havoc on a person’s life and health. If you believe someone you love is abusing methamphetamine, offering your support and helping him or her seek treatment is the best thing you can do.
Treatment For Methamphetamine Abuse And Addiction
Recovering from a methamphetamine addiction may seem impossible, but with proper treatment, there is hope for even the most severe cases of methamphetamine use disorders. If you or a loved one is struggling with meth abuse or addiction, The Bluffs is here to help. Our world-class treatment facility offers a variety of customized treatment programs designed to help individuals overcome substance addiction and get on the path to long-term recovery.
To learn more about the signs of meth abuse and addiction, contact one of our dedicated treatment specialists today.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens — Mind Over Matter: The Brain's Response to Methamphetamine
- National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens — Methamphetamine (Meth)
- National Institute on Drug Abuse — Methamphetamine