Crystal meth, also called just meth, is an illegal drug that’s manufactured and created with a combination of cold medicine ingredients and toxic chemicals. While crystal meth is cheap and delivers a powerful high, it’s also very addictive, dangerous and ultimately deadly for many people.
Meth has the ability to wreak havoc on every aspect of a person’s life and health. It can cause major damage to organs and the brain, and many of the effects, particularly of chronic use, may not be reversible. It also changes the mental well-being of the user, their physical appearance, and it destroys families, relationships, and careers.
Along with feeling pleasure and intense happiness, meth also generally increases your energy levels and physical activity, as well as how alert and sociable you are. You aren’t likely to feel tired nor hungry when using it, and it can also increase your attention span.
We will discuss what meth does to your body below, but it’s important also to have an understanding of how it impacts the chemistry and function of your brain.
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Some of the short-term effects of meth on the body include elevated body temperature and blood pressure, rapid heart rate and irregular heartbeat, and there’s also the potential for a brain hemorrhage, lung collapse, and convulsions if someone overdoses on the drug.
The following are just a few of the things meth does to your body:
- Extreme weight loss
- Insomnia and sleep deprivation
- Damage to organs including the kidneys, liver, heart, and lungs
- Damage to nasal passages
- Sores, abscesses, and infections
- Tooth decay
To go into more specifics regarding what does meth do to your body:
- Since meth is a stimulant, it can have a profound effect on the cardiovascular system. It puts stress on your heart with elevated blood pressure and a disruption of normal rhythms. Not only does meth damage your heart and cardiovascular system, but it can also contribute to heart attacks.
- Meth constricts the blood vessels of the user as well as their veins, which can cause blood clots to form.
- Meth can not only create clots, but it’s toxic to your blood vessels, so that can cause rupturing that can then lead to bleeding into the heart.
- People who do meth are an at increased risk of strokes.
- Using meth can damage the liver and increase your risk of developing hepatitis or acute liver failure. This is because of the many toxins that can be contained in meth including drain cleaner, battery acid, paint thinner, lithium, and Freon.
- Meth can cause the kidneys to shut down because of elevated body temperature, and it can also break down muscle tissues that then become toxins dangerous to the kidneys.
- Also relevant to looking at what does meth do to your body is examining the impact on the lungs. When you smoke meth, the toxins the drug contains go directly to the lungs, and they damage them. When your blood vessels are constricted from meth, it can also reduce blood flow to your lungs and lead to the accumulation of fluid.
So what about your mouth? The mouth is one of the primary focuses when we look at what meth does to your body.
Dubbed “Meth mouth,” this is a scenario where your teeth become decayed, and your gums become swollen and red. People who are chronic meth users often have many missing teeth and gum disease because of how corrosive and acidic meth is, as well as the toxins that are present in the drug that can lead to damage.
While this list of examples of answers to the question of what does meth do to your body can seem scary, it’s not even exhaustive. Meth can damage nearly every part of your body, as well as your brain and your life, which is why it’s such a scary, horrifying drug.
There are other effects as well including meth sores, effects specifically of injecting meth and more that can wreak havoc on the life of the addict and everyone around them.
If you or a loved one live with methamphetamine addiction or are using methamphetaminerecreationally and want to stop, it’s time to seek professional help. The Recovery Village® provides care to those struggling with methamphetamine. Reach out to one of our knowledgeable representatives today to learn how you can start on your path to recovery.
Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.