Meth - The Worst Drug Ever

Meth: The “Worst” Drug

Methamphetamine is a very real and serious problem in the United States, with people younger and younger getting addicted to it everyday. Missouri is currently  the meth capitol of the world. Not only is it available in every major city but also even rural areas of the country. It is a very real epidemic that is right at our doorstep. What is it about meth that makes it so attractive and ultimately, so terrible?

What is Meth?

Meth is an illegal drug that is primarily a stimulant, in the same class as cocaine and crack. There are many nicknames for it (crank, speed, crystal, glass), referring to different types, qualities or forms of the drug, but they all boil down various versions of methamphetamine.

Methamphetamine increases the amount of the neurotransmitter dopamine, leading to high levels of that chemical in the brain.Dopamine is involved in reward, motivation, the experience of pleasure and motor function. Methamphetamine’s ability to release dopamine rapidly in reward regions of the brain produces the euphoric “rush” or “flash” that many users experience. It is important to note that repeated methamphetamine use can easily lead to addiction.

Effects of Meth

Meth creates a very strong sense of happiness and well being for the user, usually conjoined with a ‘rush’ effect when it is first taken providing hyper activeness and energy. The user feels confident, aware and awake, more in-tune with whatever they may be doing. There is also a distinct decrease in appetite, which is why many users (particularly women) begin to use the drug in the first place in order to lose weight.

Meth glass pipe

A glass pipe used to smoke meth.

Meth related paraphernalia

Various paraphernalia used to inject meth.

 

Signs of Meth Use

Meth can be in crystallized form or powder, and varying in color from clear to chalky white, or yellowish brown to different shades of blue. All forms of meth can be snorted through the nose, smoked out of glass pipes, injected with syringes, or ingested orally.

Because there are many different types of meth and various ways it can be used, there are many different signs that the drug is being abused, both from the paraphernalia used to the physical signs on the body.

“Meth Paraphernalia”

  • Glass “bulb” pipe
  • Burned aluminum foil
  • Short straws
  • Razor blades
  • Baggies with powder residue
  • Lighters
  • Syringes
  • Burned Spoons

 

“Meth Physical Signs”

  • Restlessness
  • Abnormal sleeping patterns
  • Red sores on skin
  • Tooth/gum decay
  • Grinding Teeth
  • Weight Loss
  • Dilated pupils
  • Excessive Scratching

 

Results of Addiction to Meth

As with any serious drug, meth can promote drug-seeking addictive behavior. Because prolonged use of the drug prevents the brain from naturally being able to provide chemicals that provide pleasure, users will ultimately only be able to derive any sense of well being unless they are using the drug. Stealing, lying, lack of care for anything other than the drug are all symptoms of someone who is addicted to methamphetamine, or any type of drug for that matter.

Methamphetamine use also raises the risk of contracting infectious diseases like HIV and hepatitis B and C. These can be contracted both by sharing contaminated drug injection equipment and through unsafe sex. Regardless of how it is taken, methamphetamine alters judgment and inhibition and can lead people to engage in these and other types of risky behavior.

What makes meth so terrible is its prevalence among young people, being readily available not only in clubs and events but in schools. Meth is easy to obtain for anyone, and pervasive among all areas of the country—and the world.

2 Comments
  • adam braun
    Posted at 21:23h, 14 May Reply

    Well one thing you may have incorrect is that all the drug addicts are the same. Someone who is addicted to narcotics has a whole different set of tendencies and habits than someone who is addicted to amphetamines.

    • Howard Barker
      Posted at 20:00h, 15 May Reply

      Actually, the behaviors surrounding addiction to narcotics and methamphetamine are almost identical. While some of the physical symptoms that accompany dependence on the two types of drugs are different, the drug seeking behavior, manipulation and dishonesty that surround active addiction are the same. Drug addicts indeed are not all the same just as no two individuals are the same – the tendencies and habits however, are very similar.

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