Long-term methamphetamine abuse can cause psychotic symptoms such as paranoia, hallucinations, and delusions (such as the sensation of bugs crawling under the user’s skin) to occur. The psychotic symptoms can last for months or years after methamphetamine use has ceased. —From the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Research Report: Methamphetamine Abuse and Addiction, September 2006

Methamphetamine Addiction and Long Term Treatment

Meth can damage blood vessels in the brain leading to strokes (which can produce irreversible damage). —From the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2004

Methamphetamine (commonly called meth) is a highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system. Meth damages the body and mind because it is often made from harmful ingredients such as battery acid, household cleaners, various fuels, and antifreeze. Meth increases blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate, and breathing rate, and has been known to cause stroke, cardiac arrhythmia, stomach cramps, and shaking. It can also cause meth sores and tooth decay.

The staff at Burning Tree Long Term Rehab is sensitive to the needs of the recovering meth addict and knows that recovery is a prolonged process. They realize that emotional and cognitive impairments affect the body long after meth use is discontinued. They give each patient the solutions and techniques needed to maintain sobriety by introducing methods and tools that refocus the individual’s attention on recovery and long term rehab.

Methadone Withdrawal Signs

Due to the impact of Methadone on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, withdrawal from the drug can increase the experience of depression, anxiety, and disruption of sleep patterns.  The aches and pains associated with Methadone usage are said to be even more uncomfortable when the drug is withdrawn.

Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms

The symptoms of Methadone withdrawal (e.g., including controlled Methadone withdrawal or detoxification) can last for months.  The longer that Methadone is used to treat pain or addiction withdrawals to other drugs, the more extensive an impact the drug can have on altering the mind and body.  Regardless of the amount of dosage administered, withdrawal symptoms will be experienced.  Withdrawal symptoms are unique to each individual, but with Methadone they are known to be brutal and at times life endangering.  The list of withdrawal symptoms associated with Methadone include drowsiness, runny eyes and nose, heavy sweating, fever, severe abdominal pain, body tremors, constipation, diarrhea, hallucinations, loss of muscular strength, and lack of physical coordination

Methadone Withdrawal Dangers

Tolerance levels to any drug will vary from one individual to the next.  Regardless of whether usage occurs in a hospital, rehab unit, or on the street, Methadone is not a harmless substance.  More deaths related to Methadone occur in the absence of medical supervision than with medical supervision.  Recently, a shocking number of Methadone deaths have occurred, but more research is required to determine if these deaths were the result of overdose or if Methadone became lethal in combination with other drugs.

The dangers of withdrawal from Methadone have historically been due to the extreme intensity of the withdrawal experience.  For some individuals, withdrawals from Methadone are so severe that they experience shock, suffer convulsions, stroke, and take severe falls after losing balance or consciousness.  The injuries sustained from falls, strokes, and convulsions during withdrawals have produced many known fatalities.

What is methamphetamine?
What is Meth?

Methamphetamine stimulates the central nervous system and has been prescribed for patients suffering from obesity as well as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).  Depending upon the amount of Meth ingested, the effect can last from eight to twenty-four hours.  Meth should not be used by any one suffering from heart disease, congenital heart defect, hypertension, severe anxiety, or hyperthyroidism.  On the street, Meth has been given a variety of nicknames that include Speed, Crank, Crystal, and Chalk.  Like most amphetamines, Meth induces intense feelings of euphoria while decreasing the need for food and/or sleep.  Meth is believed to be harmful to the brain because it releases dangerously high amounts of a neurotransmitter called dopamine into the system.

Meth Sores and Tooth Decay

Meth sores are formed as excess or unabsorbed amounts of Meth are released through the pores of the skin, much like perspiration.  For this very reason, the presence of Meth sores is a clear indication that the user is ingesting excessive amounts of the drug that the body cannot metabolize or assimilate.  Meth abuse commonly leads to experiencing the sensation of a crawling or a burning itch beneath the surface of the skin that can potentially lead to a serious injury if the area is intensely scratched or irritated.  Meth sores are nicknamed “speed bugs” or “crank bugs.”

Signs of Meth Addiction

The most noticeable sign of Meth addiction is a dramatic change in physical appearance.  Before and after photographs of Meth addicts reveal a startling deterioration of the entire physical body, thus giving the impression of advanced stages of degenerative bone and skin tissue loss.  Changes such as extreme weight loss, hair loss, severe tooth decay or loss, facial skin sores, poor hygiene, and burn marks on the lips or face are very common.

Behavioral changes that can occur with Meth addiction include panic attacks, disinterest in family or friends, nervousness, anxiety, inability to sleep, loss of appetite, mood swings, false sense of power or invincibility, aggressiveness, violent behavior, severe depression, manic episodes, and excessive talkativeness.

Long-term usage of Meth can potentially lead to brain damage, irreparable tooth decay and gum loss, liver damage, no immunity to infectious disease, hallucinations, paranoid schizophrenia, stroke, and death.

Burning Tree Gives Addicts a Second Chance at Life

No matter what stage of addiction you may be experiencing, Burning Tree can provide the kind of long-term treatment you need to fully recover and stop relapsing.  We carefully assess the needs of all our patients and make evaluations on a case by case basis.  Our team of licensed clinicians, therapists, and addiction specialists utilizes a dual diagnosis approach to treating chemical dependent behavior and mental disorders, so you benefit from receiving state of the art therapeutics found only in the top rehab centers in the country.  If you are serious about breaking the pattern of addiction to Meth, find a program that treats the whole person and not just the addiction.  There is life after Meth.  Burning Tree is waiting to help.  Call now.