Methamphetamine is among the most destructive drugs that people can use. This highly addictive substance can be snorted, smoked, swallowed, or injected. As a powerful stimulant, it spikes functioning in the central nervous system to leave users feeling hyper-alert, over-confident, and lacking inhibition. Long-term meth use is associated with severe dental decay, diminished liver and heart health, extreme facial aging, and an elevated risk of sexually transmitted disease. This drug changes how people look, undermines their natural decision-making abilities, and completely alters their brain chemistry. Sudden spikes in dopamine production during meth use make people feel euphoric and enhances pleasurable sensations. However, these spikes are short-lived. After extended periods of staying awake, people often find themselves feeling drained, famished, and unable to experience a balanced, normal range of emotions.
The physical and psychological effects of coming down from meth are extreme. As a result, many people repeatedly use this drug over very short periods of time to prolong their high. This is how meth addiction develops. Methamphetamine rarely entails high-risk physical withdrawal symptoms. People can often safely abstain from this drug with minimal medical support, and without experiencing drastic changes in their basic vital signs. However, due to the way in which meth affects brain chemistry and brain functioning, the psychological impact of meth withdrawal is intense. With long-term meth use, natural dopamine production declines, and the brain becomes reliant upon meth for the release of this important neurotransmitter. Thus, sudden abstinence without medical intervention can leave people feeling hopeless, depressed, unmotivated, and even suicidal. For these and many other reasons, the absolute best way to quit meth is in a professional rehab facility.
The Dangers of Quitting Meth on Your Own
When you check into a licensed rehab center to start your meth detox, you’ll receive around-the-clock monitoring and support. Although the primary, physical symptoms of meth detox are fatigue and hunger, the tremendous toll that this drug takes on the body may necessitate access to medication.
Methamphetamine use is hard on the lungs, heart, liver, and kidneys. People can also suffer from prolonged bouts of insomnia, feelings of restlessness, muscle cramps, and other problems, aches, and pains. With professionals on hand, these and other challenges can be mitigated to make recovery easier and a bit shorter in duration.
Nutritional support, proper hydration, and other forms of assistance can expedite the removal of meth and all residual toxins. After the physical effects of meth detox wear off, post-acute withdrawal symptoms will arise. This is the stage at which lower than average levels of dopamine production become problematic. If detoxing alone, people will have to contend with loss of motivation, depression, and even suicidal thoughts and tendencies on their own.
During this phase of detox, the likelihood of relapsing is incredibly high. At a rehab facility, all patients have constant access to:
- Private counseling
- Group therapy
- Stress management activities
- Medication for mitigating both physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms
With proper support and care, patients can sleep better, adopt positive life habits sooner, and start tackling more advanced stages of addiction treatment early-on.
The Importance of Understanding What Triggered Your Meth Use
Meth users often deal with a tremendous amount of guilt. They blame themselves for starting meth, for not being able to quit, and for not being able to prevent the very detrimental effects that this drug has had on their lives. In reality, however, meth addiction is a complex disease that often has a variety of underlying causes. Some people start using meth because they suffer from feelings of low self-worth, and find that meth helps them to feel confident and fit in.
Others use meth as a means for treating underlying mental health disorders that haven’t been diagnosed or professionally treated. They may be using meth to mute or alleviate the symptoms of:
- Bipolar disorder
- Social anxiety disorder
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
or other issues. When underlying or co-occurring disorders like these exist, quitting with professional help will provide access to dual-diagnosis treatment. This can include finding the right medications for achieving and maintaining mood balance and feelings of normalcy, and adopting the right habits for naturally managing stress. Absent of support, people who quit meth may find that the symptoms of their co-occurring disorders are significantly heightened.
Increase Your Chances of Successful Recovery With Professional Detox
Meth is in many ways a very social drug. In order to acquire meth and to maintain constant access to it, meth users often hang together. Moreover, all of the places that meth user go tend to be places where meth can be found. When quitting meth, it’s important to put significant distance between yourself and any high-risk relationships that you’ve formed, and all high-risk environments that your frequent.
Professional rehab followed by inpatient addiction treatment creates the highest likelihood of success by removing these and other risk factors. Without easy access to this drug during the early and most challenging phases of withdrawal, people are far less likely to succumb to cravings and temptation. If you or someone you love has been struggling with meth use, we can help. Call us now at 844-639-8371. Our counselors are always standing by to provide the information and guidance you need.