Methamphetamine — more commonly known as meth — is a highly addictive synthetic stimulant. Individuals may abuse methamphetamine in the illicit form of crystal meth or by misusing prescription medications such as Adderall, Dexedrine or Desoxyn which are frequently used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), narcolepsy or obesity.
Meth rapidly increases the amount of dopamine in the brain, resulting in a temporary sense of alertness, euphoria and heightened energy. Increased blood pressure, heart and respiratory rates caused by meth use can be dangerous and even fatal. Additionally, repeated meth use often causes hallucinations, anxiety, paranoia, aggression and other distressing mood-related symptoms.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):
- About 2.5 million people use meth in any given year
- About 1.6 million are addicted to meth
- About 500 people try meth for the first time every day
- Drug overdose deaths involving psychostimulants like meth are on the rise, increasing by an average of 30% per year in recent years
With evidence-based treatment modalities, freedom from methamphetamine addiction is possible to achieve.