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Methamphetamine

Home / Most used drugs / Methamphetamine

Methamphetamine (either called desoxyephedrine or methylamphetamine) is a psychostimulating drug taken commonly for entertainment aims (its street name is crystal meth), but it's also used with people who have lack of attention and hyperactivity, or narcolepsy. The medicine name is Desoxyn. It results in euphoric mood and anxiety, by influencing directly brain's reward system, and thus there's a place for addiction. Methamphetamine quickly reaches the brain and becomes the reason of dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin discharge. Addicts may turn obsessed or process repeated actions as washing hands, constructing and destructing objects or cleaning. The withdrawal comes with sleepy mood and hunger, signs of depressive mood, often followed by excitement and drug-wish.

History. In 1893 methamphetamine was firstly extracted from ephedrine by scientist Nagayoshi Nagai. In 1919 methamphetamine in form of crystals was processed by Akira Ogata through ephedrine reduction, with support of iodine and red phosphorus. A similar component amphetamine was firstly produced in Germany by Lazar Edeleanu in 1887.

One of the first amphetamine usages took place during WWII when the Nazi military authorities spread the substance under the brand Pervitin to servicemen. The substance was effectively spread among division and rank, from tank servicemen to elite soldiers and aircraft crew. Chocolates with addition of methamphetamine were called "pilot's chocolate" (Fliegerschokolade) if presented to flyers, or "tanker's chocolate" (Panzerschokolade) if given to tank personnel. From 1942 to 1945 and his death Adolf Hitler was injected with dosages of methamphetamine, for curing depressive mood and tiredness. Hitler must have acquired symptoms similar to Parkinson disease, developing from 1940, because of taking this drug.

Addiction. Methamphetamine possesses a high degree of addiction, especially if smoked or injected. Though being unthreatening for life, to give up taking methamphetamine is quite difficult and returning to it is usual. To get rid of addiction a lot of recovering users visit 12 Step events, as Crystal Meth Anonymous.

Writing about son's addiction to the drug, a Californian writer, also acquainted with methamphetamine says the following: "Crystal meth has a particular, terrible symptom. Speaking of it Stephan Jenkins, Third Eye Blind singer, claimed that this drug flushes "bright and shiny" feeling. It also causes paranoia, incoherence, and both self-destruction and dramatic destruction. With its influence you act unconscionably to experience again this "bright and shiny" feeling".

Former addicts claim they felt dull and stupid when gave up taking methamphetamine. This is a result of brain adaptation to methamphetamine in order to work faster, or what is supposed to be a high level. People having ADHD have a higher possibility to addict to methamphetamine, as the substance enhances the addict's ability to concentrate his attention and reduce impulsivity. Methamphetamine is not commonly prescribed to such individuals because of addiction, till the moment other stimulants as dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine?), methylphenidate (Ritalin?) or combined amphetamines (Adderall?) lose their potential. When using the drug for a long time, abstaining from it can cause depressive mood and slow thinking, as a result the user tries to take more drug to cope with it. This behavior is called "Vampire Life" in its chronic form. Long-term drug addiction becomes a reason of poor self-care and even insignificant troubles with health can cause serious consequences if the addict processes no treatment. Serious troubles with health commonly submitted to methamphetamine usage, e.g. tooth damage and significant skin infections, are the result of non-sterile needles and poor hygiene. Even being used for a long time the drug commonly cases no external damages, but rather inner ones as heart valves damage, enhanced possibility of strokes and hypertension.


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