Things I've Leaned While Watching a Child Battle Meth Addiction
This isn't an under statement; it's the truth. The recidivism rate for meth addicts trying to recover is higher than with any other stimulant drug. Methamphetamine addicts in recovery are at an increased risk for re-using for two and a half years after the last use of meth. The first few highs that an addict experiences are in the word's of addicts I have spoken with, "the most incredible feeling you will every have". They have also told me that meth is such a liar, that after those first few highs, you can spend the "rest of your life looking for that first high again, but you'll never find it."
This web page will give you the factual evidence that you will need to decide if you or your loved one is struggling with a methamphetamine problem.
The information contained here could help you save the life of someone you love.
There are now web-sites every where out there claiming that statistics were skewed to make it appear as though the methamphetamine epidemic is not as bad as it has been portrayed. All I can say is that unless you have lived through a methamphetamine addiction, or watched as your loved one struggled with methamphetamine abuse; you don't really know. That's what makes this site different. I know. I've seen what it can do, numerous times. I see it's aftermath daily and what it has done to the lives of the addicts in recovery who come to weekly support meetings. I see it in the eyes of my little grandson everyday when he says his prayers and asks "God to take care of my momma." Meth is perfect in what it does. It kills, steals, and destroys.
- Methamphetamine if smoked or injected has a 98% addiction rate after only two uses.
- Methamphetamine damages vital areas of the brain responsible for decision and memory. Prolonged methamphetamine abuse can lead to "meth psychosis", a form of schizophrenia. Because this form of schizophrenia is "drug induced" rather than "organic" (meaning naturally occurring or genetic predisposed to) it may not be readily treatable through conventional medication. In some cases, the damage done to the addict's brain is permanent.
- Because methamphetmaine damages the synapse of the brain after only one use, brain function is impaired from that first use. The brain damage escalates especially if methamphetamine use is continued. The synapse is the portion of the brain that relays messages from point A to point B. If your brain doesn't receive the message, do you think you can make a good decision?
SPECT SCAN OF A NORMAL BRAIN
SPECT SCAN OF A BRAIN AFFECTED BY METHAMPHETAMINE
Images used with permission from Society of Neuroscience, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and UCLA School of Medicine. May be used for non-profit educational purposes. Photos are released by the copyright holders for non-profit educational purposes.
Strawberry Quick - Meth for Kids
- Methamphetamine is currently being marketed for " younger clients" in the form of flavored meth. The flavor and color have been added during the " cooking" process which does not affect the potency of the drug. It looks like candy and has a more pleasant taste. Some are marketing it as an "energy drink" in a powdered form which can be added to water.
- Methamphetamine when used during pregnanacy, crosses the "placental barrier". This means that unborn children whose mother's use methamphetamine during the course of the pregnancy are also exposed to the effects of methamphetamine; including the damages. ie: brain abnormalities, organ defects, addiction withdrawal to methamphetamine at birth, unseen cognitive birth defects, etc.
- Because methamphetamine significantly alters the amount of dopamine released in the brain, the euphoric high is followed by a catastrophic crash. Severe depression, suicidal ideations, and hypersomnolence are common side effects during "the crash".
- Methamphetamine addicts sometimes suffer from "dual diagnosis", which means that they sometimes have psychological disorders such as depression or attention deficit disorder for which they "self medicate" via the use of methamphetamine.
- A child treated with stimulant drugs for ADD or ADHD has a significantly increased risk for methamphetamine addiction.
- Self-esteem issues continue to be a catalyst in the decision of young adults to try illegal drugs. Peer pressure is often sighted in adolescent substance abusers.
- The largest increase in methamphetamine users are women between the ages of 30-45 - the "soccer moms". Methamphetamine promises increased energy and alertness in addition to the added side effect of rapid weight loss.
- Females are more likely to use methamphetamine than cocaine.
- Every 49 seconds in the United States an arrest is made for a substance related offense.
- A disproportionate amount of incarcerated individuals are imprisoned due to substance related offenses.
- Methamphetamine is a highly sexual drug. Because of this, users of the drug have a much higher incidence of sexually transmitted diseases. Nearly 75% of all methamphetamine users prefer injection as the means of use. Needle sharing is common practice. This combined with elevated sexual desires contribute to elevated percentages of methamphetamine abusers whom test positive for HIV, Hepatitus C, and many other blood born pathogens.
- Methamphetamine is not a new drug. It has been around since the early nineteen hundreds. It was widely used by both Allied and Axis forces during WWII. Hitler is probably the most famous methamphetamine addict.
- Because of the increased sexual urges, children in homes where methamphetamines are used are at high risk for sexual assault. The atmosphere that they are raised in (constant traffic, numerous strangers, etc.) puts them at an extreme risk.
- Methamphetamine knows no socio-economic boundaries. All are fair prey for methamphetamine; the poorest to wealthiest have become it's victims.
- There are many risk factors associated with substance abuse in adolescents. Children raised in single family homes have an elevated risk for the development of substance problems. Children who are survivors of sexual abuse have a higher risk for developing substance problems. Children raised in single family homes in which the absent parent has little contact with the child are at a greater risk for the development of substance problems.
- Methamphetamine killed my daughter. It happen to me; and it can happen to anyone. She was only 20 at the time; she died of a suicide while in custody for possession of drugs. It was less than 24 hours after her arrest. Suicidal tendencies are common among methamphetamine users during "the crash" that follows methamphetamine use.
- She left behind a devastated family...a mother, siblings, a son, grandparents, and uncles. Her death was preventable. I didn't know the signs and I thought there was little help available. Know the signs and that there is help out there...you just have to know where to look. There is hope.