Meth Addiction: Symptoms, Detox & Treatment

Meth Addiction: Symptoms, Detox & Treatment

Meth is an incredibly powerful and addictive drug. Only one use can create a compulsive need to use it again. Every meth use damages brain receptors, which makes it nearly impossible for the user to feel pleasure unless they use meth. Recovering from a meth addiction requires medical detox and then professional treatment through behavioral therapy and other methods.

Basic Information About Meth

Despite the prominence of opioids and prescription drug addiction these days, meth remains one of the most damaging and addictive drugs. Meth forces increased dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is the pleasure chemical in the brain that is produced naturally from a variety of satisfying activities and tasks. However, meth causes the brain to produce way more than is healthy. The rush of dopamine is so strong that it produces a need and a dependence almost immediately.

Over continued use, meth actually destroys the brain’s dopamine receptors, which means you can’t feel dopamine through anything other than taking more meth. The drug quickly becomes the center of the user’s life, and they spend most of their energy and resources seeking more of it.

Treatment through detox and rehab is definitely possible, but meth can cause a lot of permanent damage if not treated relatively quickly.

Signs and Symptoms of a Meth Addiction

There are a number of physical symptoms for meth addiction as well. If you suspect that someone you know is addicted to meth, take a look at the following common symptoms:

• Weight loss
• Lack of sleep
• Dehydration
• High body temperature
• Skin abscesses
• Dental problems

Meth also drastically alters brain chemistry, which can cause some shocking behavior changes. People struggling with meth addiction often have severe paranoia combined with aggression and wild mood swings. They may also be subject to hallucinations and become anti-social. Meth is technically a stimulant, so it can often cause users to engage in impulsive and risky behavior.

Side Effects of Meth Addiction

Addiction can start quickly after the first meth use. Even small quantities of meth can have profound effects. In terms of mood, a meth user might experience the following side effects:

• Exhilaration
• Confidence
• Euphoria
• Dulled emotions
• Increased sexual arousal
• Restlessness or agitation

In terms of behavioral symptoms, you might notice the following from a meth user:

• Fast or constant talking
• Increased aggression
• Odd or bizarre behavior
• Lack of awareness

Physical symptoms of meth use include the following:

• Raised blood pressure
• Elevated body temperature
• Heavy breathing
• Increased alertness
• Lack of appetite
• Racing heartbeat
• Fidgeting

Psychological symptoms usually include confusion, hallucinations, paranoia, delusions and a lack of inhibitions.

Is Meth Addiction and Dependence the Same?

Dependence refers to a physical need for the drug. If you don’t take regular amounts of the drug, your physical body goes into withdrawal. This is why detox is often a required start to addiction treatment. In order to treat the underlying psychological symptoms, the body has to be rid of the drug. It’s possible to be addicted without having dependence, but usually, meth addiction is a psychological compulsive need to take the drug accompanied by physical dependence.

It’s difficult to address the underlying reasons for meth addiction during treatment if you are distracted by physical drug cravings. Thus the need for detox.

What Does Meth Detox Do?

Professional treatment for addiction usually starts with a period of detox to combat uncomfortable withdrawal effects and get you ready for further treatment. One of the reasons people tend to avoid seeking treatment is that they’ve already experienced involuntary withdrawal symptoms. However, with medically supervised detox, many of these uncomfortable symptoms can be mitigated. You may be prescribed medicine for some of the symptoms during detox as well. This allows you to begin treatment for meth addiction in a more comfortable state as the drug has been purged from your body.

Meth Addiction Treatment

Recovery from meth requires a comprehensive treatment plan that includes a period of detox, plus therapy and counseling. Therapy through various methods will address the most damaging part of meth addiction, which is the psychological part. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is one of the most common and effective forms of treatment. This helps people understand why they pursued substance use like meth in the first place. It also helps them understand their triggers and how to cope with them.

Meth is one of the most difficult drugs to recover from. It’s generally not possible for someone to quit and recover from meth alone without professional treatment. The key goal for treatment is a lasting recovery.

Inpatient versus Outpatient Treatment

This is one of the key decisions you must make when seeking treatment for meth. As previously mentioned, treatment for meth tends to be more challenging than many other drugs. In general, if you were a heavy meth user and have been using it for a long time, then you probably need inpatient treatment. A shorter and lighter period of use might be able to utilize outpatient treatment to great effect.

The main difference between the two treatment types is how much freedom you have. Inpatient treatment means staying in a residential treatment facility. You wake up at the facility and go to bed at the facility. Outpatient treatment usually means you come in for a certain amount of time and then leave to go back to your home after.

Counseling and Therapy

After detoxing from meth and choosing your treatment plan, you’ll begin a structured regimen of counseling and therapy. Your therapist will help you identify the reasons behind your drug use and provide strategies to help you cope. Along with cognitive behavioral therapy, you will usually have other therapies in your personalized treatment plan. It’s common for meth treatment centers to have additional therapies like yoga therapy, exercise therapy, art therapy, equine therapy and others.

You will be encouraged to learn more about proper diet and nutrition as well as physical exercise. It’s also important to find other interests and hobbies to take up and maintain after you get out of treatment.

New Method Wellness Rehab For Meth Addiction

New Method Wellness is a dual diagnosis treatment center located in Southern California. We offer the following forms of treatment:

• Meth addiction treatment
• Substance abuse treatment
• Alcohol addiction treatment
• Substance abuse detox

If you are addicted to meth or another substance, detox is the first step, followed by a personalized treatment plan in either a residential or outpatient capacity. New Method Wellness is committed to helping patients overcome drug and alcohol addiction through proven treatments and holistic methods.

If you or a loved one are seeking detox and treatment for meth addiction, contact New Method Wellness today to find out more.

For more information about our Addiction Treatment Programs call 866.951.1824 today!

It’s Time For A New Method


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