Many individuals feel as though they are powerless to stop using meth after just one dose of the substance and there are many misconceptions about meth and meth addiction treatment.
Meth is the shortened form of the word methamphetamine, and this substance is also known as the “white dragon”, “ice”, “meth” and “crystal meth.” Regardless of the term that is used for this compound, it is a highly addictive, man-made substance that causes both brain damage and addiction after just one use.
The use of meth causes an enormous release of dopamine in the brain which causes an intense rush of initial pleasure that can last 6 to 12 hours. At the same time, it destroys the neurons that produce this chemical in the brain, so it is impossible for the user to ever feel the intensity of the first high. Over time the brain loses the ability to feel pleasure or pain due to the absence of these neurons and the brain begins to crave more and more of the substance which results in more damage not only to the brain, but to the lungs, heart, teeth and other organs of the meth user as well.
Over time the meth user will quickly lose interest in any activity other than using meth. Meth use is so addictive that the meth user feels powerless to stop using meth, and it often is impossible for an addict to quit using meth without significant support and effective treatment.
Despite these disturbing facts about meth use and meth addiction, there is hope for meth users and their families and friends. With the appropriate addiction treatment meth users can confront their addictions and begin the process to learn how to live meth free.
There are residential treatment facilities that specialize in detox to help the meth user’s body get clean of the drug, and there are rehab facilities where the meth user can learn the coping and life skills that they need to be drug free and remain drug free. There are also outpatient facilities that can help monitor the addict once they complete the in-residence portion of their drug addiction treatment, and these programs can also provide support to deal with the stresses in life that can lead meth addicts to be tempted to relapse.
Without effective treatment, meth use often results in great harm to the body of the meth user that will ultimately result in death if the meth user does not stop. Not only is meth use harmful to the meth user, the manufacture of meth is an extremely dangerous process that can result in explosions capable of taking out whole city blocks as well as dangerous fumes that can kill or permanently injury those nearby. Toxic residues often remain in structures where it is made, and these harmful residues can continue poisoning the environment and anyone who comes in contact with them for many years after their creation.
Even though it is one of the most difficult addictions to treat, meth use does not have to be the end of someone’s life; there is drug treatment available for any meth addict who wishes to live and begin the process of breaking their addiction and living meth free.