Meth: An Epidemic in Small Town America
What exactly is Meth? Methamphetamine is a synthetic stimulant that affects the central nervous system. It has numerous nicknames and may be better known to some as Meth, Crank, Crystal, Ice, or “the poor man’s cocaine”, just to name a few. It can be snorted, smoked, swallowed, or injected and is extremely addictive, even after only one use. It is compiled of a long list of highly toxic chemicals, some of which are Pseudoephedrine, lye and drain cleaners. Some of the mental and physical side effects can include: stroke, rotting teeth (also known as “meth mouth”), organ failure, brain damage, obsessive compulsive behaviors, paranoia, psychosis, and open sores all over the body, which most methamphetamine addicts will feel the need to compulsively pick at, only making them worse. It has been known to make the individuals using it become more withdrawn from their family and friends, as well inducing violent behaviors, and suicidal thoughts. Many will also turn to some kind of criminal activity to support their habit, or just because they are highly paranoid and not thinking straight. Not only does it have a huge impact on the individuals using it (and their loved ones, as well) but also on the communities in which it is found and the environment, as a whole. There is over five pounds of toxic waste created for every pound of Methamphetamine made, and this waste contaminates water, endangers wildlife and can be very hazardous to human health. There is also the issue of meth labs (the places in which the drug is created, often times in a bathtub, sink, etc.) exploding and not only harming the ones that are making the drugs, but also their neighbors or anyone within the vicinity of the explosion. Perhaps the scariest thing about this particular drug is that it can be made anywhere for little money, and most of the time is being created by someone who is already addicted to it or who has no business mixing highly flammable...
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