Methamphetamine, also called crystal meth or just meth, is a highly dangerous and addictive drug that’s synthetically manufactured. It’s made of household materials that often happen to be highly toxic. The base of meth is usually something like pseudoephedrine, which is often found in cold or allergy medicines. Then, during an extremely dangerous and explosive process using chemicals like ammonia and acetone, meth is created.
Meth can then be snorted, smoked or injected, and when someone uses this stimulant, it creates a feeling of euphoria, increased energy, confidence, and sociability. Unfortunately along with that high comes many risks.
Some of the health risks of meth include:
- Diminished appetite that can lead to malnutrition and extreme weight loss
- Sleep problems
- Mood problems and irritability
- Anxiety and paranoia
- Increased blood pressure and heart rate
- Damaged blood vessels that can lead to cardiovascular problems
- Damage to the liver, kidneys, and lungs
- Brain damage
Unfortunately, the above list of the effects of meth isn’t even exhaustive, it’s just a very brief overview of what can happen when someone uses this dangerous drug.
How Is Meth Made?
Crystal meth is manmade from chemical reactions. It is often made in laboratories, which can be large-scale or even in people’s houses. It can also come from Mexico in some cases.
The basis for meth is common cold and allergy medication, and when someone makes meth, they extract certain ingredients from those medicines, which are usually available over the counter. They then combine the ingredients from the cold medicine with other chemicals and substances to make it more potent. These ingredients are highly toxic, flammable and corrosive and can include anything from drain cleaner to battery acid.
The entire process is often referred to as cooking, and often when someone makes meth, it leads to fires and explosions.
A meth lab also produces a lot of waste that is toxic, and if people are exposed to it, it can cause poisoning and sickness.
As a result of the rising use of meth and meth production facilities, the U.S. Congress passed the Combat Methamphetamine Act in 2005. This requires pharmacies and retailers to keep track of purchases of pseudoephedrine products, and it also places limitations on how much someone can buy in a day. Mexico has also put in place some similar restrictions.
What Is Shake and Bake Meth?
Both doing meth and producing meth are incredibly dangerous and often result in death for people associated with this drug in any way. Meth labs leave people open not only to the risk of explosion, but they also produce toxic fumes, and as was touched on above, toxic waste.
Without even realizing it, meth labs and the ingredients that are stored to create this drug can be toxic to the inhabitants of homes, and law enforcement officials have been working on identifying and safely destroying meth labs.
Now, however, there is a process called shake and bake, which simplifies how meth is created. In the traditional meth-cooking labs, there was equipment needed including things to heat chemicals, glass beakers, and of course all of the various ingredients.
The shake and bake method of creating meth is faster and takes up less space, and unfortunately, people can do it even while they’re in their car.
Shake and bake method requires mixing chemicals in a soda bottle, and while it may seem like a quick fix for people who want to make meth, it’s still extremely dangerous. The chemical reactions that take place in the mixing bottle often lead to an explosion when the cap is removed. The result is serious burns, and there is also the risks associated with disposing of the bottles used to make the drug. They can explode or poison people when they’re thrown out.
When people make shake and bake meth, even the smallest error can lead to the explosion, which can not just burn flesh and disfigure the person but can lead to blindness and death.
There are an increasing number of photos and videos coming to light where people have attempted to create shake and bake meth while driving in a car, and the car ultimately ends up exploding. The issues associated with shake and bake meth are creating a rising demand for burn treatments in emergency rooms, and it’s becoming so expensive that some burn units are having to close.
Research has shown that in the states with the most meth activity, up to a third of patients who went to hospitals with burns sustained their injuries while making meth, and most didn’t have insurance.
So what is shake and bake meth?
It’s a simpler way to make meth in a bottle that unfortunately is just as risky and is leading to mounting medical costs and deaths associated with this drug.
If you or a loved one live with methamphetamine addiction or are using methamphetamine recreationally 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.