What causes depression after taking methamphetamine
drug Why is crystal meth so dangerous?
Crystal meth - what is it?
Methamphetamine - its correct name - is a chemical made from the active ingredient ephedrine. It is also found in low doses in cold and asthma medicines.
Like speed, the drug is one of the amphetamines and is sold in the form of small crystals or as a powder. It can be swallowed, sniffed, smoked or injected.
This is how crystal meth works in the brain
Methamphetamine is a psychoactive substance. It increases attention, concentration and performance, which makes it attractive for many people. Tiredness and hunger take a back seat, as do the sensation of pain and fears. Self-confidence, feelings of happiness and euphoria increase.
These sensations are triggered because the ephedrine contained in crystal meth docks onto the nerve cells in the brain and stimulates the release of neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin. Norepinephrine, a stress hormone, promotes concentration as well as reaction and performance. The happiness hormones dopamine and serotonin ensure positive feelings in the brain.
After the soaring, the crash follows
Crystal meth users can - depending on the intensity and duration of their consumption - go without sleep for up to several days. But when the intoxication is over, the crash follows. Often in the form of restlessness and irritability, but also listlessness, lethargy and depressive moods.
Long-term and heavy use of crystal meth can result in personality changes, psychoses, fears and perceptual disorders, among other things.
Physical consequences of crystal meth
The physical consequences of crystal meth use are also significant. The first side effects occur after the intoxication has subsided and can last for several days to weeks. These include: dizziness, profuse sweating, racing heart and high blood pressure, headaches, insomnia, difficulty concentrating, excessive exhaustion, muscle cramps and tremors.
If crystal meth is consumed for a long time, it can lead to skin changes and inflammation, underweight, tooth damage, cerebral haemorrhage, kidney damage, damage to nerve cells in the brain, an increased susceptibility to infections and an increased risk of stroke.
Why is crystal meth addicting so quickly?
Since crystal meth quickly leads to a strong intoxicating experience, the risk of becoming dependent on it is particularly high. Especially since after a long phase of exhilaration and a year-long "crash", the desire for the previous high is all the greater.
The problem: In order to experience the same stimulating effect again, the next time you have to dose higher. This also increases the risk of dependency - and not least of all, an overdose.
Drug for high achievers
Crystal meth has long ceased to be a classic party drug. Methamphetamine is used in particular by people with heavy workloads - from shift workers to managers to (working) family mothers. Most users take the drug for the first time after the age of 30. Not infrequently, in order to be more efficient.
A dangerous cycle. Because once you become addicted to crystal meth, you rarely manage to get out. According to the German Central Office for Addiction Issues (DHS), only eleven percent of addicts manage to do this.
Crystal meth: recognizing consumption
Some people only use methamphetamine in small amounts or in phases. Then their consumption is not always clearly recognizable. The following symptoms could indicate a drug problem with crystal meth:
Dilated pupils, slowed pupil reactions, loss of appetite, an increased need to communicate, strong urge to move, excessive self-confidence, difficulty concentrating, unfounded argument, speech disorders (stuttering), motor disorders, mood swings, nervousness, tension, irritability, aggressiveness, hallucinations and paranoia problems (diarrhea, paranoia Constipation usually alternating), frequent itching and scratching.
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