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Is Meth Addictive?

Troubled man asking himself, "Is meth addictive?"

Are you wondering, “Is meth addictive?” Yes, it is—extremely so. Methamphetamine is a stimulant that can cause physical and mental health problems, including fatal overdose. In fact, in 2021, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that U.S. meth overdose deaths were surging. Meth addiction treatment in Asheville is available to help those struggling with meth use.

Call Insight Recovery Centers today at 828.826.1376 to learn more about our meth treatment program.

What Is Meth?

Methamphetamine was first developed early in the 20th century as a medication to help amphetamines work better. Meth is highly addictive, and doctors soon learned the substance could not be used safely by most people. Today, meth is labeled as a schedule II drug and is illegal.

People ingest meth by smoking, injecting, snorting, or swallowing the drug. It produces a rush of pleasurable feelings, including a feeling of being energized. However, the euphoria related to meth comes with a number of unwanted and unsafe side effects, including:

  • Irritability
  • Anxiety and restlessness
  • Paranoia
  • High blood pressure
  • Reduced appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Accelerated heart rate and breathing

The euphoric effects of meth abuse last just a few minutes, but the other effects can last for several hours after a single dose.

People abuse meth to experience the pleasurable feelings it produces. Once those feelings wear off, they may take more of the drug to produce the euphoric sensations again. This can lead to a “run,” which means taking meth for several hours or days without eating or sleeping.

The Risks of Meth Abuse

The biggest risk associated with meth misuse is fatal overdose. This tragedy can result from taking too much meth at one time or taking meth that has been cut with other drugs like fentanyl. The possibility of overdose is concerning, but it’s far from the only health risk of meth use.

Other effects include:

  • Elevated blood temperature
  • Chest pain
  • Seizure
  • Changes in behavior, violent behavior
  • Psychosis
  • Confusion
  • Chronic anxiety
  • Circulatory collapse
  • Severe heart problems
  • Severe dental problems
  • Sudden death

Most, but not all, of the damage caused by meth misuse is reversible. It takes close medical supervision, a team of qualified healthcare professionals, and personal commitment to successfully restore your health after prolonged meth use.

Is Meth Addictive? Yes!

Meth is an extremely addictive substance because of the way it interacts with the brain. Methamphetamine affects the brain’s reward center. It causes the brain to release high levels of dopamine, which creates a euphoric effect.

It also changes the brain structure. Over time, the brain becomes dependent on the presence of meth to trigger the release of feel-good hormones.

Instead of cautioning you against using a dangerous substance, your brain actually urges you to use the drug again. These cravings are incredibly difficult to resist without medical and mental health support.

Some of the signs you or a loved one is addicted to meth include:

  • Trying to stop or reduce use and being unable to quit
  • Having strong cravings
  • Meth use is interfering with school, work, or personal obligations
  • Suffering consequences such as job loss or health issues
  • Isolating from friends and family members
  • Building tolerance

Is meth addictive? Yes, but not everyone who uses meth becomes addicted. However, continued use increases the risk of developing a stimulant use disorder. If you recognize the warning signs of meth addiction in yourself or someone you care about, get professional help.

Get Help for Meth Abuse at Insight Recovery Centers

Methamphetamine addiction can be deadly. Meth ravages a person’s physical health and can cause permanent brain damage. If you or someone you care about is using meth or you suspect they have developed an addiction to the substance, call Insight Recovery Centers at 828.826.1376 for help.