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Crystal Methamphetamine - The Facts About This Powerful Drug

Crystal Methamphetamine – The Facts About This Powerful Drug

Methamphetamine, also known as speed, ice, crystal, glass or meth, is a strong CNS stimulant that is synthetically produced through a complex chemical procedure and it is the second most spread drug after cannabis in US, Asia, and Oceania. Europe is not so fruitful ground for this drug; the traces of this drug can be found in the Czech Republic or Slovakia but not in great amount. Meth is usually in the form of powder although it can be in the form of paste or crystal. Depending on the form, the drug can be injected, snorted, smoked or swallowed. The injection is the fastest way of feeling the drug and its potentials.

The production and effects on the consumer’s body

The production of meth starts with ephedrine’s or pseudoephedrine’s reduction, while it is later mixed with various substances including caffeine. The complex chemical procedure involves the use of many household items that are a catalyst and the production often results in two types of meth; d-amphetamine and I-amphetamine. The first one is a lot more potent type of meth since d-isomer is 90% pure methamphetamine that is highly-priced on the street.

The production and effects on the consumer's bodyDrug effects and withdrawal

Meth boosts your dopamine level, giving you a strong euphoria. It fastens your heart rate, raised blood pressure and temperature while dilating your pupils. Meth improves the overall mood, removes fatigue and tiredness and replaces them with the feelings of euphoria, power, and self-awareness. It is no wonder that they often refer to this drug as kryptonite.

When it comes to withdrawal, a meth user can act in two different ways, depending on the amount of daily dose, the period of consuming, and the purity of the drug (the more pure drug is, the harder withdrawal is). The common signs are motor retardation and agitation, unpleasant dreams, fatigue, depression, anxiety, poor concentration, and irritability. However, the meth is the only drug that has huge potential for the development of psychopathological problems, including psychosis, anxiety disorders, violent behavior and cognitive deficits.

The treatment

The treatmentAs one of the most potent and widespread drugs, meth is the drug of choice for 16 million of people that severely affects your brain, emotions and cognitive abilities. It is a serious worldwide problem that leaves enormous consequences both on society and environment. The real problem is that there is no practical or approved treatment for methamphetamine’s addiction.

Cognitive, psychotic and mood disorders are often reported as the consequence of the meth’s use, but there is lack of understanding in the neurobiology of meth to produce an effective therapy. Still, the patients who manage to escape the meth’s addiction are undergone to cognitive-behavioral therapy, motivational strategies, and 12 step programmes.

Dangers Of Meth Labs

Dangers Of Meth Labs

Methamphetamine is a synthetic drug that is made of several chemicals that are mixed in an accurate chemical and dangerous process to form a powerful drug, with high addiction rate. Even though this drug is approved for limited medical use, the most of drugs that are available on the street come from DIY methamphetamine labs, where the majority of them are located near Mexico’s border. The real danger of meth labs is that their number increases by every day, and if we don’t do something about, our youth will suffer.

How can you recognize a meth lab?

We all think of Breaking Bad’s UV with Bryan Cranston. However, it is not so common to see a UV that operates as a meth lab. Still, few facts point to a meth lab.

– Strong odors like ammonia or acetone

– Shacks with blacked out windows

How can you recognize a meth lab?– Open windows, often vented with fans

– Huge amounts of glass containers

– Excessive trash in the form of antifreeze containers, duct tapes, lithium batteries or fluid cans

These are common sings of a meth lab so keep them in mind when you see some unusual shack or cabin.

Where can you find these labs?

Where can you find these labs?Meth labs are often situated in forests or remote locations of national parks to avoid being detected. The byproducts of these labs are sometimes an even bigger problem since they contaminate the surroundings with hazardous fumes and highly explosive chemicals. When drug smugglers leave the meth lab, it becomes a time bomb due to the explosive-sensitive content of the lab – a single spark can ignite the chemicals left in the lab, and it can lead to a serious explosion.

The dangers

Meth cookers leave highly hazardous trash after their cooking work. One pound of meth creates six pounds of toxic waste. You would think there are no chemicals left after the lab is abandoned. However, the chemical residue remains on the stoves, containers, etc. What is more devastating is that all the chemicals used in the process could potentially be radioactive, not to mention that solvent chemicals are all dumped in ground or waters.

Effects on human’s health

Effects on human’s healthCommon effects that a man can feel are headaches, nausea, fatigue, and dizziness. However, these are only light symptoms that you could have if you are not exposed too much to these chemicals. The more problematic health conditions are difficult breathing, chest pain, loss of physical coordination or the risk of burning your eyes, nose or mouth. Depending on the amount of produced drug and chemicals that are left, exposure can even be lethal. A huge risk of cancer disease is the greatest problem of these labs since you can be affected by its chemical compounds very easily.

Meth Use During Pregnancy

Meth Use During Pregnancy

Crystal methamphetamine, also known as meth, is a potent stimulant in the form of powder or crystal that contains various toxic chemicals (including battery acid, drain cleaner, etc.). It has a high rate of addiction, with the strong emphasis on physical addiction. Since meth is easily made with the proper chemical knowledge, it swallows up many young lives every day. To make things worse – many pregnant moms are addicted to meth, and they risk their child’s health due to drug abuse. During pregnancy, meth can significantly affect the health of a fetus, especially if moms are long-term addicts. Some unfinished studies have shown that a fetus will not be affected by meth for the first few times, but the studies need to be confirmed yet.

Fetal growth and development are vastly affected in a negative way, which can lead to serious injuries and even death. Even the bigger problem is that around 1% of all meth users are pregnant moms, while more than 50% of meth-using moms continue to use this drug after giving the birth. To present properly how this drug is dangerous, we have today so-called “crack-baby-generation” – a few young generations of kids that are smaller than their peers of the same age, which also have lung problems and lower tolerance on stress.

Restricted fetus growth

Fetus growth can be slowed and limited due to meth addiction. Women are addicted to meth probably will not follow proper nutrition habits which means less food for their fetus and a greater chance for the underdevelopment of fetus. Another problem that meth causes is raising blood pressure; it means that there will not be enough blood for the fetus. This condition is often known as “small for gestational age”. The low infant birth weight and small head circumference are the most common implications in cases where pregnant moms use meth. These two conditions put the fetus at risk for permanent health problems, including infections, development of mental problems and eventually death.

Defects upon the birth and prematurity

As with every drug, crystal methamphetamine causes significant changes in consumer’s body, as well as in fetus. The fetus will not be affected immediately but rather gradually if the meth mom does not intake high doses of the drug on the daily basis. The risk of developing defects is even higher when pregnant moms smoke meth, though it is usually snorted. Aside from the above-mentioned problems, smoking meth can cause a cleft lip, various heart defects, strokes and even brain hemorrhage and defective development of abdomen and intestines. When it comes to prematurity, it is very likely that moms who smoke meth will give premature birth. This is caused by high blood pressure caused by meth, which often leads to underdevelopment, lung problems, and death.