Crystal Meth Lives Up in Smoke

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Topics are:
• education
• pharmacological and neurological information
• Harm reduction compared to crime and punishment

The stimulant class of Drugs
Neurology of Meth
The brain contains neurons that ‘communicate’ with each other. This is how our body functions. In the brain of an abuser of Crystal meth the balance of dopamine and dopamine-like neurotransmitter is grossly affected. Crystal meth causes an elevation of neurotransmitters in the synapse. Crystal meth is so chemically similar to Dopamine and Norpinephrine that it produces the same effect in the brain chemistry. It literally floods the synapse with ‘dopamine-like’ neurotransmitters, which leads the user to think they are having’ the best time ever’ when reality is change in brain chemicals causes certain traits to develop among meth users. The first time users ‘high’ is totally different than the addicted users ‘high’. This is best described by comparison, which follows. A first time user feels:

1. that they are a much better person now
2. like it has improved your life immensely
3. more happy than ever
4. they are enjoying life so much
5. euphoria
6. invincible
7. increased energy
8. total lack of hunger
9. no urge to sleep – awake for days
10. a great increase in libido
11. increase in heart rate
12. increase in blood pressure

An addict feels:

Pharmacology of Meth
Dr. Allen Galbraith states that the L D 50 of Crystal meth is 720 mg per kg, a 70 kg person would require 50.4 g. The ‘usual dose’ or effective dose is 40 – 50 mg. Clearly this drug would not present a high risk of overdose causing death. Yet the average life expectancy after starting the addiction is 5-7 years. According to the society Life or Meth the degree of risk varies with the mode of ingestion. If swallowed it can lead to stomach problems over time. If inhaled it can lead to nasal tissue damage, including making a hole in the wall between the nasal passages. When smoked it will lead to massive lung damage over time. IV use has many risks, some of which are, injecting particles into the vein which causes death. Also you may get blood infections, collapsed veins and deadly air bubbles. Intramuscular injections can produce risks such as muscle damage, bleeding under the skin called, sub-dermal hematoma, and abscessed infections. Rectal ingestion can cause sphincter damage, and damage to the rectal walls. Some effects of Crystal meth on the body include:

1. difficult breathing
2. sweats
3. loss of coordination
4. neuropathy – death of nerves causes numbness
5. slurred speech
6. grinding of the teeth
7. memory loss
8. insomnia
9. jerky movements
10. bone marrow loss
11. cracked lips (JIB sores)
12. skin rashes or sores from scratching and itching
13. ‘speed bumps’ where toxins build up under the skin and form bumps 14. convulsions
15. hypothermia
16. malnutrition
17. weak immune system
18. blood clots
19. kidney disorders
20. liver damage/jaundice
21. high blood pressure
22. chest pain
23. irreversible damage to blood vessels in the brain
24. heart beating too fast
25. stroke
26. heart attack
27. death

Additional possible side effects of Crystal meth:
28. poor dental hygiene
29. loss of self-esteem
30. that they will do anything to get the drugs
31. homelessness
32. track marks or snort marks
33. intense weight loss
34. loss of job
35. criminal behavior
36. chronic masturbation
37. loss of appetite
38. mood swings
39. craving for sugar and sugary treats
40. suicidal thoughts
41. murderous thoughts
42. loss of control over one’s own thought processes (in particular the loss of the ability to stop thinking...
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