A Guide to
Crystal Meth Addiction & Treatment

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Addiction is characterized as a chronic relapsing brain disease. Based on our current knowledge and understanding of the disease, it’s an incurable illness, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be treated. In fact, people who suffer from addiction can lead happy, healthy, productive lives by finding the right high-quality addiction treatment programs.

At Principles Recovery Center, we are a premiere rehab for meth addiction, offering a variety of treatment for meth abuse and dependence as well as resources for post-treatment maintenance. If you or someone you love is suffering from crystal meth addiction, Principles Recovery Center is your go-to source for crystal meth abuse treatment.

What is Methamphetamine aka Crystal Meth?

Before we can effectively describe how crystal methamphetamine addiction recovery works, we must take a brief moment to explain what meth is, its effects (both short-term and long-term), as well as the side effects and withdrawals that are associated with crystal meth use.

Methamphetamine — also colloquially known as meth, crystal, chalk, ice, and countless other slang terms — is an extremely potent and highly addictive stimulant drug. From a chemical perspective, methamphetamine is very similar amphetamine. More often than not, methamphetamine appears in the form of a white, odorless, bitter-tasting crystalline powder.

There are a number of different routes of administration for methamphetamine, but the most common is smoking. Requiring the use of a special apparatus, individuals apply heat to methamphetamine via these special pipes, inhaling the fumes that the drug puts off. However, besides smoking, methamphetamine can also be taken orally, insufflated (inhaled through the nasal passage), or dissolved in water or alcohol and injected directly into the bloodstream.

When the drug is smoked or injected, methamphetamine gets delivered very quickly to the brain, allowing the drug to produce its immediate and intense euphoria. In fact, it’s the rapid onset of the effects as well as the sheer intensity of the euphoria that makes crystal meth arguably the most addictive of all mind-altering drugs. However, since this euphoric pleasure has a quick onset, it also fades extremely quickly. Thus, individuals who use crystal methamphetamine often take the drug repeatedly in very short intervals, which is the cause of the “binge and crash” usage pattern that crystal meth users often exhibit.

Once it has reached the brain, crystal methamphetamine works by substantially increasing the amount of dopamine, resulting in exceedingly high levels of that chemical lingering in the brain. As you’re probably already aware, the neurochemical dopamine plays a vital role in reinforcing behavior by creating feelings of reward, motivation, offering the experience of pleasure, and even having a direct affect on one’s motor function.

The ability of methamphetamine to release dopamine rapidly in reward regions of the brain produces the euphoric “rush” or “flash” that many users experience. Repeated methamphetamine use can easily lead to addiction—a chronic, relapsing disease characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use.

What are the Signs of Crystal Meth Addiction? Is There Withdrawal from Meth?

While every mind-altering substance has been associated with certain negative effects, crystal methamphetamine is one of the drugs with the most profound side effects from its usage. Even though individuals who use methamphetamine regularly will surely want to hide their recreational drug use from others, knowing these effects will allow you to better identify crystal meth abuse and addiction in others as early as possible.

One of the behavior traits that’s common of individuals who are addicted to crystal meth is known as “tweaking.” Basically, tweaking is a term that’s used in reference to the types of behavior that people begin to exhibit when the effects of crystal meth intoxication have only just subsided. During this period immediately following crystal methamphetamine intoxication, the individuals begin to experience intense — nearly debilitating — cravings for more of the drug; in fact, the cravings are so intense that they seem to be lacking many of their most identifiable personality traits.

Another common signs of crystal meth use is sores that appear on the skin. A common misconception is that these sores directly result from drug use, but they’re actually tied to behaviors individuals exhibit while under the influence. Often due to hallucinations that are experienced while using methamphetamine, these sores occur from individuals scratching and picking at their skin. Due to the frequently with which they use methamphetamine, the sores aren’t able to heal, resulting in bigger and deeper sores that take substantially longer to heal. These sores can leave severe scarring once they’re finally able to heal.

People who use methamphetamine long-term may experience anxiety, confusion, insomnia, and mood disturbances and display violent behavior. They may also show symptoms of psychosis, such as paranoia, visual and auditory hallucinations, and delusions. For those reasons we create a from fitted treatment program for each individual based on their specific circumstances.

Our goal is to provide a stable foundation, work on core issues, and setup a long term success plan.  Principles Recovery Center is a South Florida drug rehab, offering a variety of effective treatments and therapeutic techniques, including cognitive behavioral therapy, multidimensional family therapy, motivational interviewing, and contingency management among others during treatment for meth addiction.

Treatment is sometimes intensive at first, where patients attend multiple outpatient sessions each week. After completing intensive treatment, patients transition to regular outpatient treatment, which meets less often and for fewer hours per week to help sustain their recovery.

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What Treatment Options are Available for Those Addicted to Crystal Meth?

For individuals suffering from crystal methamphetamine addiction, the first step on the road to recovery is usually detoxification. The idea with crystal meth detox treatment is to help the person stop using methamphetamine safely, which entails continuous medical observation and care. Additionally, methamphetamine detox treatment serves as a primer for the treatment phase of addiction, allowing patients to overcome the physical side of meth addiction so that they can focus on recovery once they begin receiving actual treatment.

After detoxification has been completed, the patient is likely to progress into inpatient treatment. As you may already know, inpatient treatment is the residential-style form of rehabilitation, allowing patients to reside on-site for the duration of the program. This ensures optimal safety while allowing for a greater amount of treatment. In most cases, outpatient care isn’t recommended for crystal meth addiction recovery unless used as a follow-up to inpatient care.

The next step of crystal meth addiction recovery is aftercare. Although aftercare can consist of a number of different resources, some of the most common include support groups and twelve-step programs, psychotherapy or one-on-one counseling, career development or placement, and a number of other possible resources.

Principles Recovery Center Can Provide Crystal Meth Abuse Treatment

At Principles Recovery Center in Davie, FL we treat the above substances as well as numerous others ranging from Flakka, Hallucinogens, Inhalants, Marijuana, MDMA, Steroids, and many others for the PHP and IOP levels of care.

For any questions or for a free consultation, please call Principles Recovery Center toll-free at 855-744-1056. We understand that everyone’s situation is different, so we’re always happy to discuss your unique recovery needs. If we are, for any reason, unable to provide you with the services you need, Principles Recovery Center offers placement and referrals to one of the numerous trusted drug rehabs in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, as well as across the country, including such states as New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Illinois, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, and a growing number of others.