HOW METHAMPHETAMINE AFFECTS PEOPLE’S LIVES
When people take methamphetamine, it takes over their lives in varying degrees. There are three categories of abuse.
LOW-INTENSITY METH ABUSE:
Low-intensity abusers swallow or snort methamphetamine. They want the extra stimulation methamphetamine provides so they can stay awake long enough to finish a task or a job, or they want the appetite-suppressant effect to lose weight. They are one step away from becoming “binge” (meaning uncontrolled use of a substance) abusers.
BINGE METH ABUSE:
Binge abusers smoke or inject methamphetamine with a needle. This allows them to receive a more intense dose of the drug and experience a stronger “rush” that is psychologically addictive. They are on the verge of moving into high-intensity abuse.
HIGH-INTENSITY METH ABUSE:
The high-intensity abusers are the addicts, often called “speed freaks.” Their whole existence focuses on preventing the crash, that painful letdown after the drug high. In order to achieve the desired “rush” from the drug, they must take more and more of it. But as with other drugs, each successive meth high is less than the one before, urging the meth addict into a dark and deadly spiral of addiction.
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- Interpol report on Methamphetamine, 27 September 2005
- “Methamphetamine Facts & Figures,” Office of National Drug Control Policy, 2008
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- State of Hawaii, Office of Lt. Governor news release, 31 October 2007
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- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration news release, 15 February 2008
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- United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime World Drug Report 2008
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