Going through Methamphetamine withdrawal is a completely normal, almost predictable process that begins when an individual has been using the substance for a significant amount of time then suddenly stops consuming the drug. Methamphetamine, also known as “Crystal Meth”, has become a huge problem in the United States over the years and is currently getting worse. According to a 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 1.6 million people reported using Meth in the last year although I suspect that number is much higher.
What is Methamphetamine?
Methamphetamine works by influencing certain neurotransmitters in the Central Nervous System, creating a flood of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is a chemical found in the brain which produces an extreme feeling of euphoria. Meth is a man-made drug, often created in labs or backyards with household chemicals and cold medicines, and can come in the form of an odorless, white powder or crystalline substance. This drug is extremely powerful and so addictive that users can get hooked after using it just one or two times.
How do you use Meth?
Methamphetamine, also called “crystal meth,” “ice,” and “speed”, can be used in a couple of ways. The most common way of consuming this poisonous substance is by smoking the white powder through a glass pipe called a “stem” or “flute.” Individuals that decide to smoke Meth often end up with a side effect called “meth mouth,” which is where the gums and teeth corrode due to the toxicity of the chemicals used to produce the drug. Meth can also be snorted, injected, or swallowed.
Methamphetamine withdrawal symptoms
What makes you tick? Are you ticking like the soothing, constant rhythm of a heartbeat, or are you ticking like a time bomb, on the verge of exploding?
Nervous tics are associated with the central nervous system which is the region of the human body stimulated by the schedule 2 drug, Methamphetamine. Thoughts and how we interpret our external environment, as well as every nuance of physical movement, are directed through the central nervous system.
Dependence on Methamphetamine is highly probable, due to the likelihood of developing a tolerance through frequent use. If you have frequented meth-induced euphoria, you know the power this synthetically processed chemical compound has to take over your body and life. If this is the case, withdrawal symptoms could be imminent if you suddenly stop consuming the drug.
Using Methamphetamine over a significant period of time can change the way your brain works. When you suddenly stop using this drug you will start to feel sick and have withdrawl symptoms. Though this particular drug may not have the physically lethal withdrawals of other substances such as Heroin or Alcohol, individuals can experience psychosis which causes some to have suicidal ideations. Some other symptoms of Methamphetamine withdrawal are:
-Lack of motivation
-Intense psychological cravings for the drug
-Meth-induced psychosis (hallucinations, delusions) (these can occur as a side effect of use as well)
How long will this go on?
Because Meth is not metabolized as quickly as other stimulants, the withdrawal period may not come on as quickly but may last longer than other stimulants. The longer a person has been using Meth, the more severe the symptoms and timeline may be. Some Meth users may experience withdrawal symptoms for months, known as post-acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS).
The important thing to remember is that just as every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and every consistent high has an equal and opposite low, equilibrium is inevitable. The withdrawal period does end and the brain and central nervous system can demonstrate miraculous healing capacity.
It’s very challenging to go through the methamphetamine withdrawal process alone. While physical symptoms subside, long-term psychological symptoms like anxiety and psychosis can linger. A supportive treatment environment with trained professionals and other successfull recovering individuals can be extremely beneficial and help support the body, mind, and psyche while you are re-calibrating to a new reality.
If you or someone you know are struggling with an addiction to Methamphetamine or are experiencing withdrawal symptoms, call Oasis Recovery today.