Methamphetamine is a powerful and highly addictive stimulant that affects the lives of thousands of Americans every year. While meth addiction is not as prevalent in Connecticut as it is in other parts of the country, it still poses a serious problem. Several high-volume meth labs have been shut down in recent years, and a single 2013 seizure by the DEA and Connecticut law-enforcement officials yielded over $4 million in the drug. Many addiction treatment professionals concur that this drug is one of the most addictive substances available, and meth addiction can develop after just a few weeks of use. Call Drug Rehab Treatment Centers New London today at (860) 207-8356.
The drug works by tricking the body’s neurotransmitters into producing increased amounts of dopamine. This chemical change creates a profound rush of euphoria for the user. These effects can last for hours, but the subsequent crash is as intense as the initial rush. Ongoing use of meth makes it difficult for the user to feel pleasure through normal means; only the drug is able to produce those feelings of well-being. As users begin taking larger and more frequent doses of in an effort to recapture the same effects, their tolerance for the drug increases. The brain physically can no longer produce the dopamine, so now the user depends on the drug to deliver that feeling. Once dependence takes over, addicts no longer take the drug to feel good, but because their bodies require it.
The physical and mental risks associated with the abuse of this substance are significant. Nearly every user suffers some degree of tooth decay and loss. Continued use can cause depression, anxiety and insomnia, and it can even lead to psychotic episodes involving violent behavior. Lasting cognitive damage is a common effect of the drug; cardiovascular problems, and even death can occur in some cases. The lowered inhibitions and heightened libido that result from meth use can lead to dangerous sexual behavior, increasing the risk of sexually transmitted diseases such as hepatitis and HIV.
Addiction to meth is one of the most difficult drug dependencies to overcome. The cravings, depression and suicidal thoughts that accompany the withdrawal process can be hard to endure, and recovery can be a slow process. Because of the lengthy recovery process associated with meth abuse, an extended rehab program is usually recommended.
The rate of relapse among meth addicts may be high, but a quality treatment program can help an individual combat an addiction to the drug and give them the tools they need to maintain long-term sobriety. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a key component in any treatment program for meth abuse. At Drug Treatment Centers New London, our six week program inpatient program focuses on medical detoxification, therapy, family support, social support and relapse prevention.
Aftercare services play an important role in a recovering addict’s long-term success. The temptation to use continues long after rehabilitation is complete, and aftercare programs can aid in preventing a relapse. Ongoing therapy and participation in support groups can help recovering individuals handle the everyday stresses and triggers that might lead them to resume their drug use.
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