Breaking Up: Meth treatment and you Back Page 9 of 9
   
 

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Image of female teen looking thoughtful. Most young people who are addicted to meth say that getting off it is very difficult and they advise others not to even start. While meth addiction is similar to other types of drug addiction, meth's grip on the user seems to make it a particularly tough habit to break.

Methamphetamine is a stimulant, like cocaine. But according to the Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse "amphetamines are the most potent of the stimulant drugs in that they cause the greatest release of dopamine, more than three times that of cocaine. This extra sense of pleasure is followed by a "crash" that often leads to increased use of the drug and eventually to difficulty in feeling any pleasure."

It's also true that it doesn't take long for methamphetamine users to become addicted. And teens are being hard hit by meth addiction. According to recent statistics, one out of five people to enter treatment for methamphetamine addiction were under the age of 18. It's a big problem — even MTV recently reported on this issue.

The most effective treatment for methamphetamine combines detoxification and behavioral therapy, a process than can take well over a year. Relapse rates are high for methamphetamine users and many users need to be separated from their environments, particularly those who have been surrounded by meth "cooking." There are many changes in a meth user's brain, and these changes make treatment even tougher.
More Info Image of question mark / Quiz
HBO's documentary, Rehab, shows the struggles that five young people in treatment experienced as they tried to get clean. Click here to learn more.

Elyse's struggle with meth addiction is reported in a story aired on Oregon's Fox 12 in 2005. Read it here.
Image of question mark / Quiz Image of question mark / Quiz How much do you know about meth?
Take this quiz from NIDA to find out.
Partial Recovery of Brain Dopomine Transporters in Methamphetamine (METH) Abuser After Protracted Abstinence. Images depicting a normal brain, a brain after 1 month on METH and after 24 months on METH.
Where to go for treatment
If you need help, get it — and get it now. The longer a user puts it off, the harder it is to address the damage that meth has done. Click here for a listing of treatment resources near you. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) also has a phone number to call to help locate treatment resources quickly —
1-800-662-HELP
This photo of the brain of a meth user may look complicated. But the conclusions are easy to understand. This image shows that after a long period of abstinence from methamphetamine, recovery has taken place in the area of the brain associated with performance on motor and verbal memory tests. However, even after two years, other brain regions were not repaired. Scientists believe that some meth-related brain changes are very long lasting. (Courtesy of NIDA, Dr. Nora Volkow testimony, April 21, 2005)


More and more people are seeking treatment for
meth addiction. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, treatment admissions increased from 21,000 to 117,000 between 1993 and 2003.

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home

|

why risk it?

|

the first high

|

growing old with meth

|

meth hits town

|

breaking up

 

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