What Is Methamphetamine? A Brief Overview

Methamphetamine is a Dangerous Drug

Also called crystal methamphetamine, or simply crystal meth, methamphetamine is a fairly recent discovery in the world of illegal recreational drugs. As a DEA Schedule II drug, it is recognized that methamphetamine has medical uses, but it also carries a very high risk of abuse and addiction. In this overview, we will discuss the historical background of methamphetamine and where it came from, as well as other details about the drug, its most common street names, side effects associated with it, and what users feel when they abuse it.

The Historical Background of Methamphetamine

While amphetamine was first synthesized in the late 19th century, it was not until 1919 that crystal methamphetamine was first created in Japan. Because of its crystalline structure, methamphetamine was soluble in water, making it an ideal drug for injection.

Methamphetamine use gained popularity, and both the Axis and Allies prescribed it to their troops to keep them awake and alert on the battlefield. The Japanese were especially known for giving it to their Kamikaze pilots, but after the war they made it available to the general public in their country, as well.

After World War II, while Japan was experiencing an epidemic of methamphetamine abuse by injection, in the United States, methamphetamine was prescribed as a weight loss aid. Likewise, college students were using it to stay awake to study, and it gained popularity with athletes and long-haul truck drivers, too.

It was not until the 1970s that methamphetamine use became illegal for almost all purposes. Since then, however, thanks to outlaw motorcycle clubs in the US and Mexican drug cartels, there are now massive labs cooking methamphetamine and distributing it across the US on a daily basis.

Details – What Is Methamphetamine?

When encountered on the street, methamphetamine is usually found as a white crystalline powder that has no odor but has a bitter taste. Users may get high by snorting, smoking, or injecting it. While injection is the fastest delivery system, smoking and snorting are also highly effective and can get the drug to the brain very quickly, where it releases dopamine, giving the user a feeling of extreme pleasure.

Street Names for Methamphetamine

Methamphetamine is often referred to on the street as:

  • Crystal meth
  • Ice
  • Meth
  • Crystal
  • Glass
  • Speed
  • Crank
  • Fire
  • Stove Top
  • Cristy
  • Biker’s Coffee
  • Hot Ice

Side Effects of Using Methamphetamine

Like other Schedule II drugs, methamphetamine has a number of dangerous side effects, including but not limited to:

  • Psychosis
  • Paranoia
  • Memory loss
  • Violent behavior
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Increased heart rate and/or blood pressure
  • Permanent change in brain structure and/or function
  • Hallucinations
  • Physical dependency

Like any other intravenous drug, users who choose to inject methamphetamine also run a higher risk of contracting a blood-borne disease, such as HIV, Hepatitis, and others.

What Does the High From Methamphetamine Feel Like?

So what does it feel like to get high on methamphetamine? Basically, dopamine is closely linked to the brain’s reward center. The natural release of dopamine makes you feel good as a reward for doing something good for your mental or physical health, such as exercise. When a user takes methamphetamine, their brain will be flooded with dopamine, and they will feel a heightened sense of euphoria while the stimulant makes them feel more awake and alert than usual at the same time.

Especially with extended use, though, a methamphetamine high can include dramatic mood swings, sweating, itching, and scratching or picking at actual or perceived sores on the skin. Repeated use will lead to addiction and dependency.

Methamphetamine is increasingly becoming an issue for the American people. Becoming a certified DOT supervisor helps to ensure that methamphetamine is not present in many industries that are vital to the country. Contact us today at Drugtestingcourses.com to get started on your DOT certification training.

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