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Addictions: Designer Drug
Methhetamine (Meth) is a designer drug, known alternatively by its street names as speed, crank, ice, chalk, dunk, Batu, Tina, Go-Fast, Shabu, Tweak, Glass, Crystal, and Scooby snax (DEA, 2020). Meth belongs to the group of drugs known as stimulants. Meth increases the amount of dopamine naturally produced in the brain, giving the user a high. The meth user experiences a powerful high as a result of increased levels of dopamine in the brain, and this high is then wanted again and again as it is so powerful. As Prakash et al. (2017) point out, the euphoric effects of METH occur due to release of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is involved in the experience of pleasure, motivation and motor function (p. 3). Meth can be sold as a powder, rock, base or pill. The drug is made using the primary ingredients of ephedrine and pseudophedrine, which can be obtained from over-the-counter cold medications. These ingredients are combined with other ingredients that can be obtained from household items, such as lithium (car batteries), acetone (paint thinner), Freon (air conditioning units), gasoline, and sulfuric acid (cleaners). The drug is consumed usually by smoking it and inhaling the vapors.
The individual using meth experiences euphoric sensations. The individual becomes more talkative, experiences increased alertness and energy as well as a heightened sexual arousal; he can also experience increased hostility or aggression, and feel superior to others. However, following the intense high is a crash that plunges the person in the opposite direction: depression, anxiety, and the need for a return to that original high are all experienced. Without a return to meth, the user experiences withdrawal symptoms, which include fatigue, dry mouth, increased appetite, jittery nerves, lethargy, sleepiness, apathy, despair, and even paranoia, hallucinations and delusions (Liang, Wang #038; Yuan, 2018).
Behavioral and mental health effects of meth use include insomnia, reduced concentration and memory loss, psychotic behavior, suicidal ideation, violence, and paranoia.…breathing support may be needed. Intravenous fluids may also be used to reduce pain, anxiety or seizures. If kidney function fails or heart problems arise, additional medications may be used to stabilize the individuals condition or sustain life if the bodys organs are failing.
The current legal status of meth in the USA is that it is a schedule II stimulant under the Controlled Substances Act (DEA, 2020). It may be used in a medical setting and it may be prescribed once but not refilled. Desoxyn is the only currently legal meth product and is marketed in tablets of 5, 10 and 15 miligrams. This legal drug can be used in the treatment of obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It is used in the former because meth use curbs the appetite (which is why users are often hungry afterwards); it is used in the latter because it focuses the attention. However, Desoxyn is used in very limited circumstances and is not…
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