Methamphetamine Affects Your Brain
Methamphetamine causes changes in the brain circuits that control reward, stress, decision-making, and impulse control, making it more and more difficult to stop using even when it is having adverse effects on your life and health. Frequent use also can lead to tolerance and withdrawal, so you need more of the drug to feel normal. Additional effects of using methamphetamine can include anxiety and depression, chronic fatigue, paranoid or delusional thinking, and severe psychological issues.
Overcoming Meth Addiction: What Is The Meth Recovery Rate
With the opioid crisis making headlines throughout the country, other substance such as meth are often overlooked by the public. Of course, the problem of addiction in the United States doesnt stop at opioid abuse. Meth remains a highly-abused substance the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that there were roughly 440,000 current users of meth in 2012. While it is a highly addictive substance, recovery is possible. In this article, we will explore the meth recovery rate and explore how its treated in rehab.
Why Are The Odds Of Staying Sober After Rehab So Low
Its can be difficult to connect statements by the National Institute on Drug Abuse stating that those who get treatment and remain in treatment have greatly reduced drug and alcohol use, increased work productivity, better social function, and an improved psychological health with the studies that reveal around half of the addicts will relapse in their first year.
So, why are the odds of staying sober after rehab so low? The answer lies in the characteristics of addiction. It is classified as a relapsing disease, and NIDA states that it may take several interventions and treatment plans before long-term sobriety is achieved. Relapse is therefore considered common, which is shown through the various studies such as the previously-mentioned JAMA study and the eight-year study.
In the end, it may take an individual several attempts before they finally get their addiction under control.
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Myth: Treatment Failure Due To Relapse
When a person relapses after treatment, its common for people to consider the treatment a failure however, this is not the case. Relapse does not mean treatment is ineffective or has failed.
The best way to understand why is to look at other chronic diseases that have similar rates of relapse. Hypertension, for example, has similar relapse rates , and while being actively treated, the patient will have reduced symptoms. However, if the treatment stops, then symptoms will also return. Addiction treatment is much the same way, and abandoning treatment, not partaking in aftercare programs and plans, or not spending enough time in treatment can result in addiction symptoms returning.
Signs A Meth Addict Is Using Again
If a loved one starts abusing methamphetamine again after staying off the drug for a time, thatâs called a relapse. Itâs common, and it can happen even after theyâve gone through treatment for drug addiction, the National Institute on Drug Abuse says.
Learn to spot the signs of a meth relapse so you can help your loved one get the help they need as soon as possible.
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My Meth Addiction Rehab Recovery Journey
If youre a meth addict, you probably wont listen to me unless you understand that I have been through many of the same things that you are going through right now. Let me introduce myself.
I am a 26-year-old recovering meth addict who has not touched or picked up the drug in almost four years. A lot of that is thanks to the folks at Inspire Recovery. The reason I went to Inspire is that I am apart of the LGBTQIA+ community. My gender puts the I in the LGBTQIA+ acronym. Im one of the 0.07 percent of the population born intersex. I identify as an intersex woman. However, I also identify a lot with the trans community for personal reasons, due to similarities, and I was married to a trans woman.
When I was on the drug crystal meth, I was the lowest of the low.
Towards the end of my meth addiction, I looked into a mirror and I no longer recognized the person starring back at me. I was sleeping on a dirty mattress, on the floor, in a trap house, in the middle of nowhere. I was having random hookups with people, and I was miserable.
Make A Life Plan That Includes Everything You Want To Achieve
You now have the chance to pursue your aspirations now that crystal meth is no longer the center of everyday existence. Create a rehabilitation plan for yourself and focus on each tiny step that you need to take in order to reach where you want to go, whether that means spending more time with your children, returning to school, finding a new career, or participating in a sport or new activity.
Contact us today to take your first step towards recovery.
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Ways Of Preventing Relapse
Prevention is key when it comes to avoiding relapses. It is important to understand what causes one to relapse so that you can prevent yourself from falling into old habits again. Below are some techniques to practice that may help in prevention.
- Identify and avoid your triggers
- Speak to a trusted individual whether it be a family member, friend, or sponsor
Meth Addiction Anxiety And Co
The American Journal on Addictions published studies showing that around 40 percent of people seeking treatment for methamphetamine abuse also reported struggling with anxiety. Mood and anxiety disorders and drug abuse co-occur at rates as high as 50 percent, NIDA publishes.
Meth abuse and dependence can cause anxiety just as someone struggling with anxiety may take a drug like meth to self-medicate difficult symptoms of an anxiety disorder. Either way, meth abuse worsens anxiety in the long run and can make treatment for both the anxiety disorder and addiction more complicated.
The best method for treating co-occurring disorders is considered to be simultaneous and integrated care for both disorders. In this way, both the addiction and the anxiety can be addressed and managed in order to enhance recovery for both conditions. A combination of medications and therapeutic measures should be employed by highly trained medical, mental health, and addiction treatment professionals.
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Combining Meth Rehab Strategies
The best way to treat meth abuse is a full continuum of care, where people receive treatment and support through multiple descending levels of care: from medical detox to inpatient rehab, all the way to aftercare. The Recovery Village offers a holistic, evidence-based approach to meth addiction treatment thats uniquely tailored to each individual, including individual and group therapies, cognitive behavioral therapy and more. Reach out to our trained staff to learn more about our treatment programs that will fit your needs as you recover from meth.
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Funding And Legal Challenges
While the evidence supporting reward-based programs has accumulated for years, funding hasnt. Thats largely because a federal limit was placed on the total value of incentives a Medicaid patient could receive.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has long-used contingency management with veterans battling substance use disorder. But at $75, the cap on incentives was too low to be effective, according to national experts.
The Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services removed the spending cap in 2020, but legal hurdles remain. One complication is the federal Anti-Kickback Statute, which prohibits Medicaid-funded health care programs from making payments to patients that could potentially prompt referrals.
However, in February the Inspector General issued an opinion allowing for the use of a nationally-accessible online support program that delivers contingency management payments electronically. These developments paved the way for California to launch the nations first large-scale pilot project this summer.
Everybody, for 20 years almost, has recognized this is the treatment for people with stimulant use disorder, the projects architect, Richard Rawson, told The Lund Report. But nobodys ever done this before.
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A Prison System Offered All Inmates Addiction Treatment Overdose Deaths Dropped Sharply
Given the logistics of trying to develop state-by-state initiatives to measure recovery rates, a more efficient approach would be for SAMHSA to modify the National Survey on Drug Use and Health so it can measure recovery nationally and deliver this information to states. That means the same things would be measured in the same ways in all states, ensuring that results about addiction and recovery are comparable across states.
As individuals in long-term recovery, we believe it is essential that federal, state, and local authorities begin shifting their focus from the problem of addiction to the solution of recovery by tracking recovery rates among individuals with substance use disorders. By following Oregons example and collecting this valuable information, communities hit hard by this crisis will have a more complete and nuanced picture of the effects local programs are having. That will help them achieve higher rates of success in treating substance use disorders and promoting long-term recovery which should be held up as the norm and expected outcome for the millions of Americans living with active addictions.
Robert D. Ashford is a recovery researcher pursuing a Ph.D. in health policy at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Olivia Pennelle is a recovery journalist and owner of Livs Recovery Kitchen. Brent Canode is co-founder and chair of Oregon Recovers, a statewide recovery advocacy organization serving all Oregonians.
Statistics On Methamphetamine Addiction And Abuse
Methamphetamine, which is commonly called Meth, is a controlled substance which has a high potential for abuse, overdose, and addiction. As an illegal drug, Meth is usually sold as Crystal to be burned and smoked. Meth is highly addictive and dangerous for a persons health.
- About 774,000 Americans are regular Meth users. About 16,000 of them are between the ages of 12 and 17.
- About 10,000 Americans who regularly used Meth suffered a fatal overdose in 2017.
- About 964,000 Americans are addicted to Meth.
- In 2017, about 195,000 Americans used Meth for the first time.
- The number of fatal Meth overdoses almost tripled from 2011 to 2016.
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What Is Treatment Success
Successful treatment for drug and alcohol addiction requires customization, continual evaluations, and modifications when necessaryall delivered by medical professionals using evidence-based therapies and medications.6 There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to treatment, but its most successful when individuals complete the entire course of their treatment and continue with the aftercare programs. In fact, studies show that when incarcerated individuals receive comprehensive drug or alcohol treatment in prison and then follow up with continued care upon their release, their drug use declines by 50-70% as compared to individuals who do not receive treatment.11
Unfortunately, less than 42% of the individuals who enter treatment for drug and alcohol abuse complete it.10
Individual success in treatment depends on several factors, including:11
- The frequency, duration, and type of drug used.
- Criminal behaviors.
- Additional physical and mental health conditions.
Who Gets Addicted To Meth
Meth addiction crosses all boundaries of age, race, gender, and ethnicity. High school students, college students, and athletes all use meth. White-collar, blue-collar, and jobless people use meth. Anyone can become addicted. However, there are certain risk factors and demographic trends. For example, gender can influence meth addiction statistics. According to the BMC Harm Reduction Journal, men use earlier than women.1 Other factors like race, income level, and family history influence who gets addicted, how they get addicted, and what treatment needs to involve for the greatest chance at success.
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What Do These Statistics Mean
There is one problem that can be found in the crystal meth statistics: individuals are not counted, but relapse incidents are counted. This means that one user who has 9 relapse incidents will count as 9 meth users because every time they stop and then start again, they are counted as a new user. Because the acceptable range of crystal meth relapse is between 7-13 incidents per person, this should be accounted for in the statistics.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has discovered that when this discrepancy is accounted for and individuals, not relapse events, are counted, about half of all crystal meth users will be able to become sober and beat this addiction.
The key to defeating an addiction to crystal meth is consistent group support, ongoing therapy, and removal of triggers that would cause one to use. The public service announcements encourage people to never use crystal meth not even once. That would seem to be pretty good advice. For those who are trying to recover, it is also important to remember that tomorrow is a new day that can bring about new opportunities.
Common Causes Of Crystal Meth Relapse
- Stress. When confronted with stressful situations, many people relapse. They may have previously used crystal meth or other drugs to cope with stress and may do so again if they have not established other coping mechanisms.
- There isnt a preventative strategy in place. When confronted with circumstances that endanger their sobriety, people who do not have a strategy to cope with triggers, cravings, and other obstacles of recovery are more likely to relapse.
- After a time of abstinence, believing it is safe to use again. People in crystal meth recovery sometimes assume they can manage their usage or want to test themselves to see if they can use without relapsing into the addiction. However, only a small percentage of addicts are capable of doing so.
- Being in the company of others who are still using the substance or who arent encouraging your recovery. If you continue to hang out with drug users, you will be faced with significant temptations to relapse, either from your friends or through being exposed to drugs on a daily basis. Spending time with other people in recovery and people who support your recovery, on the other hand, may help you stay clean.
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Side Effects Of Meth Use
Meth has a great influence even in small quantities because its effects are like those of other stimulant drugs like cocaine. Moreover, side effects may include:
- Increased breathing
- Bizarre behavior
- Lack of social awareness
What does a meth addict look like? and why do meth addicts lose their teeth? A common sign of meth addiction is extreme tooth decay, which has created the term Meth Mouth. Above are the before and after pics of meth addicts and meth mouth signs and symptoms.
Avoid Old Routines And Habits
It stands to reason that if you quit your drug of choice but continue with your same routine, hanging around the same people and places, and not making any changes in your circumstances, it will be much easier to slip back into your old behaviors and habits.
Some of the immediate changes you will need to make will be obviouslike not hanging around the people that you used with or obtained drugs from. After all, you cant hang around your drug dealer or old drinking buddies and expect to remain sober for very long.
You may also need to change your route to work or home in order to avoid any triggers, or people, places, or things that make you want to use drugs or drink again.
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Why Meth Is So Addictive
One of the main and most startling facts regarding meth addiction is the high potentiality for addiction to the drug itself. While many drugs, such as cocaine and heroin, fuel addiction by mimicking a neurotransmitter and teaching your brain to crave them, meth is slightly different. Meth actually imitates dopamine and norepinephrine, the pleasure-inducing and alertness-inducing chemicals in the brain. Every time you smoke, snort, or inject methamphetamine, your brain is triggered to release more of these chemicals naturally, until it eventually breaks down and loses the ability to produce them in adequate levels.
While the initial euphoria can last between 5 to 30 minutes, the high that is felt with meth can last anywhere from 6 to 16 hours. Because methamphetamine releases approximately 4 times the amount of dopamine and norepinephrine when compared to cocaine, once the high subsides users will feel a definite drop off in energy and will experience a significant crash. Users must continually take the drug in order to stave off those side effects.
Recovery From Meth Use A Long Road
Monica Avila is finally clean.
Bright-eyed, smiling with short blonde hair.
She’s no longer the emaciated girl that was stuck in a 20-yearrut of methamphetamine use starting when she was 13.
She has been sober since December 2005. She is working towardbecoming a drug counselor. She is married. She has a dog, and abrand-new car.
But she has some reminders that will never go away.
She has hepatitis-C, contracted from injecting the drugs intoher vein. She lost all her teeth, and now has a set of falseones.
“I wish I had a picture of what I looked like before,” she said.”I had no teeth, I was just skinny and tore up.”
Methamphetamine abuse can have long-lasting physical andpsychological effects. It leads to paranoia, hallucinations andanxiety. It has physical consequences like rotting teeth,emaciation, and sometimes compulsive scratching because of “methbugs.”
Meth use can actually rewire the user’s brain, making itdifficult to think, to remember and to experience pleasure.
But despite meth’s reputation for being more difficult thanother drugs to kick, experts said it is possible to get clean, andthat recovery rates are similar to other drugs.
Dr. Tim Cermak of the California Society of Addiction Medicinesaid short-term and long-term methamphetamine use can have lastingconsequences.
“With longer use, people become emaciated, using lots of energywith no appetite. They become malnourished and dental problemsbecome massive,” he said.
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