Crystal meth, commonly referred to as simply meth, is part of a drug class called methamphetamines. Although some drugs classed as methamphetamines have therapeutic use when prescribed by a doctor, street-produced crystal meth has a different structure and much higher potential for abuse. If you suspect a loved one is suffering through a meth addiction, please call Sunstone Recovery at 855.833.9199 today for more detailed information about how our meth rehab center can help.
What are the Common Signs of Meth Abuse?
When someone begins using the street drug meth, they do not plan it to be a long-term activity. Often, an individual uses meth once and occasionally uses it as it progresses into addiction. This usually occurs before anyone close to them is alerted to a problem. Meth is easier than many other drugs for an individual to become addicted to, and it happens quickly. Some of the signs of meth use and addiction include the following:
Street meth can be injected, snorted, or smoked by the user. There are a few different ways to get high on meth, which require specific equipment on the user’s part. In carelessness and concentration on getting the next high, individuals often begin leaving this equipment out for others to see. Some examples of meth-related paraphernalia which facilitate use include:
- Needles and syringes
- Rolled bills, empty ink pens, or cut straws
- Aluminum foil or spoons
- Small baggies
Changes in Personality, Habits, and Behaviors
When someone is in the throes of meth addiction, the people around them won’t always know what is happening, especially if they’ve never had exposure to the street drug. Often, a family member or loved one will know that something about them doesn’t seem right. Their speech patterns, habits, and general demeanor undergo a dramatic shift out of nowhere. They may start hanging out with new people at different places and at unusual times of the day. They can forgo sleep and food for long periods. The way they carry themselves and their presence may be off-putting to those around them. Sometimes these characteristics can mimic another severe issue, such as a manic episode. Still, when crystal meth is a prominent part of the equation, this points to a drug-induced problem. Some sudden changes a family member may notice are:
- Drastic mood swings
- Hyperactivity and bursts of energy
- Profuse sweating from an increase in body temperature
- Increased libido (which can lead to unprotected sexual activities)
- Paranoia or delusions
- Irritability, anger, or violent outbursts
- Confusion, memory loss, or zoning out
- Delusions of grandeur
- Rapid speech patterns
- Persistent lack of sleep
- Going long periods without food
Noticeable Change in Looks
A common way people begin to suspect a problem with meth use is a drastic change in appearance. Often, a lack of sleep and the constant energy expenditure take a harsh toll on the body, causing a person’s looks to change in a short time. Visible signs of meth use can include:
- Drastic weight loss, often with an unhealthy, gaunt appearance
- Tooth decay and gum inflammation
- Cracks, sores, and scratches, from intense itching and skin picking
- Track marks
- Thinning hair or patches of lost hair
- Red, swollen, watery eyes
- Burn marks on lips or fingers
- Premature aging
- A general decline in grooming habits, leading to bad breath, body odor, or other changes
Negative Life Consequences
When an individual is addicted to meth, they develop tunnel vision, placing their complete focus on when they will be able to get high next. Many people are chasing the initial high they felt when they started to use meth, which they are unlikely to feel again. Chasing this feeling leads to real consequences that friends and family may begin to notice. Someone on meth may:
- Be fired from a job
- Get expelled or drop out of school
- Struggle financially or get into serious debt
- Get divorced, break up, or get married to a partner they don’t know well
- Face legal issues due to risky, erratic behavior
Getting your loved one into the proper treatment sooner rather than later could be the necessary course correction to prevent their life from spiraling further. When someone is addicted to meth, they don’t have the tools to get out of the addiction alone. The more consequences that add up for them, the harder it will be to dig themselves out of the hole of meth addiction and find peace and stability in their life again.
Tips to Help a Loved One Get into Meth Addiction Recovery
The extreme toll meth takes on an individual’s physical and mental state has made it one of the most harmful drugs to appear on the street market. It is so highly addictive that abstaining on one’s own without outside professional help is almost impossible. Often, people don’t receive the support they need until they end up in jail or a mental health facility without access to the drug. If someone you love is addicted to meth, they must have access to the help they need to heal. A few tips to keep in mind when preparing to help a loved one get into treatment are:
- Be sure they are using meth before you confront them
- Research meth addiction and be as knowledgeable as you can
- Confront them calmly and try to be as patient and understanding as possible
- Prepare for a hostile or defensive reaction; Don’t take it personally
- Express your concerns for their safety and well-being
- Don’t enable their addiction
- Give them the available resources on drug and addiction treatment, and let them know you will help them get the help they need when they are ready.
- Take care of yourself and your well-being.
Your loved one is not likely to jump at the chance to go along with your plans for them, but by beginning to speak with them in an honest way and voice the concern you have, you’ve planted the necessary seed that they need help to get better. By approaching them in a calm, helpful manner, you’re more likely to help them seek treatment in the long run.
Find Hope in Healing at Sunstone Recovery
If you are someone you love is struggling with an addiction to meth, please contact Sunstone Recovery today at 855.833.9199. Depending on your family’s needs, we have various drug addiction treatment options available for you or your loved one. Don’t give up hope to find the healing that you need. Our compassionate staff is here to help guide you through this healing process, and we would love to hear from you today.