Drug Testing News BLOG

Brain Recovery Scans from Methamphetamine Abuse

Methamphetamine abuse has become one of the most overriding drug problems in the western world. Traditionally its abuse was associated with white male and blue collar workers. But today it has crossed all borders and has affected a diverse population in different geographic locations.

The “war on drugs” in the US has put a major emphasis on illicit methamphetamine. Some states have placed restrictions on the sale of precursor chemicals that are used to synthesize the drug. In 2005, the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act was passed to restrict the sale of the same.

Methamphetamine is a white crystalline, odorless, bitter-tasting powder which dissolves easily in water and alcohol. It was developed from its parent drug amphetamines for its use in nasal decongestants and bronchial inhalers. It is a Schedule II drug and thus has a high potential for abuse. It is a stimulant which speeds up the Central Nervous System of the body and thus the name “Speed”. The chemical structure of Meth is almost like that of amphetamine but it has a marked effect on the CNS.

The drug is prepared in illegal laboratories risking the lives of those involved in it. The common street names of the drug are meth, chalk, crystal, crank. Crystal is the powdered form which is usually inhaled, swallowed or injected. Crank is the tablet form of the drug. In its smoked form, it is termed as ice or glass.

Methamphetamine is addictive. Just like some other stimulants, the body builds up a tolerance to this drug very quickly. The user has to increase the consumption of the drug to get the same pleasurable effects which subside even before the concentration of the drug in the blood falls significantly. Thus the “binge and crash” pattern of use is very common.

Despite all efforts to restrict the manufacture and sale of illicit methamphetamine, addiction to the drug still remains a major problem in the country. Fortunately, it is possible to detect meth abuse with instant methamphetamine drug test kits.

See http://www.nida.nih.gov/Testimony/4-21-05Testimony.html for more stats and facts on Meth abuse.