Drug Addiction – Meth Has Plagued America for More Than a Decade

(PRWEB) February 27, 2006 — Crystal meth has become the new crack with the exception that making meth is easier than making crack The National Association of Counties, surveyed 500 law enforcement groups in 45 states, found that 58% rated meth as the number one drug problem.

Long-term methamphetamine abuse results in many damaging effects, including addiction. This is characterized by compulsive drug-seeking and drug use which is accompanied by functional and molecular changes in the brain. In addition to being
addicted to methamphetamine, chronic methamphetamine abusers exhibit symptoms that can include violent behavior, anxiety, confusion, and insomnia. They also can display a number of psychotic features, including paranoia, auditory hallucinations, mood disturbances, and delusions (for example, the sensation of insects creeping on the skin). The paranoia can result in homicidal as well as suicidal thoughts.

The short term risks are significant and include death, repercussions of regular use are physically devastating and mentally anguishing. Meth addiction results in tremendous personal torment. Desperate meth users who’ve been deprived of their fix have been observed picking and eating scabs off of their bodies, along with going to the extreme of drinking their own urine in an effort to try to find enough meth chemicals to get high.

A demon drug, even in small doses it’s deadly, 99% of first-time meth users are hooked after the first try. It is also known as ice, jib, glass or speed and it has become a major worry in North America because of its increasing popularity and its devastating effects.

This synthetic stimulant is made of ghastly array of over-the-counter chemicals such as battery acid, brake fluid, floor-stripper, drain cleaner and flammable retardants found in fireworks. These are just a few of the ready-made products that make up the glass-like shards that users usually smoke or snort. Meth can also be injected, or ingested orally.

Nationwide, 7.6% of high school students surveyed in 2003 as part of the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System reported using methamphetamine during their lifetimes. Male students (8.3%) were more likely than female students (6.8%) to report lifetime methamphetamine use. Hispanic (8.3%) and white (8.1%) students were more likely than black (3.1%) students to use methamphetamine within their lifetime.

According to data from the 2004 National Household Survey on Drug Use and Health;

110 million Americans age 12 or older (46% of the population) reported illicit drug use at least once in their lifetime 15% reported use of a drug within the past year 8% reported use of a drug within the past month.

Among students surveyed as part of the 2005 Monitoring The Future study, 3.1% of eighth graders, 4.1% of tenth graders, and 4.5% of twelfth graders reported lifetime use of methamphetamine. In 2004, these percentages were 2.5%, 5.3%, and 6.2%, respectively.

During 2004, 5.2% of college students and 9% of young adults (ages 19–28) reported lifetime use of methamphetamine.

These statistics show that meth is no joke. Ninety-nine percent of first time users are hooked after their first try and the life expectancy of a person who uses meth regularly is as little as five years. A 1999 study of the methamphetamine problem reports, methamphetamine abusers were characterized as low socio economic status, less educated, relatively young white males. Today the majority of methamphetamine abusers still tend to fit that profile.

Joanna Young, national president of the www.DrugAddictionHelpLine.com, adds, “Illicit drug use is associated with suicide, homicide, motor-vehicle injury, HIV infection, pneumonia, violence, mental illness, and hepatitis. It is harmful to not only the individual but the community.”

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