Crystal Meth is an illegal synthetic (man-made) drug. It varies in texture and purity depending on how it is made. It may be sold as a fine to a coarse powder, crystals, or white chunks with grey or pink bits. It may be taken by mouth, smoked, snorted, or injected.
Also Known As:
222, chalk, crank, crystal, dirt, glass, Hawaiian salt, fast, gak, gingo, grit, high-speed chicken feed, ice, Koolaid, kryptonite, ladies, peach, peanut butter, peanuts, pink, poor man’s cocaine, rock candy, shabu, shards, sketch, soiks, speed, spooch, stovetop, tina, tweak, zip.
Central Nervous System (CNS) Stimulants
Crystal meth is absorbed into the bloodstream where it travels to the brain. The speed at which it reaches the brain depends on how it is taken.
The fastest effects are felt within seconds after injection and smoking. Snorting produces effects within 3 to 5 minutes. When taken by mouth, it may take up to 20 minutes to begin to work. Smoking may produce effects that last for 10 or 12 hours.
It acts primarily by causing the release of a chemical called dopamine in parts of the brain responsible for regulating pleasure.
The effects of the drug are unpredictable. It is different for everyone. The way a person feels depends on many factors:
There are many unwanted and dangerous effects associated with using crystal meth. Its effects are unpredictable. Some people will experience anxiety and panic attacks.
It can also make a person feel euphoric, energetic, and alert. A person may be talkative, have a rapid flow of ideas, and a sense of increased mental capacity and physical strength.
In addition, a person could potentially experience:
‘Tweaking’ is a stage that occurs as the effects of a high-dose binge begin to wear off. It is characterized by a dangerous combination of anxiety, irritability, aggression, paranoia, and hallucinations.
These individuals are at high risk of injury or violence. Indeed, deaths related to crystal meth use often result from bizarre violent suicidal or accidental behaviour.
An overdose can lead to death. Death can result from rupture of the blood vessels in the brain, heart failure, hyperthermia (extreme fever), seizures, and coma.
There is no specific antidote that can reverse the effects of the drug. If you think that a person has overdosed, contact emergency services immediately.
Sharing drug supplies, such as needles, pipes, straws, and spoons can spread viruses. These include HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.
People with diabetes, epilepsy, heart and liver problems or mental disorders are most susceptible to the dangerous effects of crystal meth.
Regular users of crystal meth may:
Some people may develop paranoid thought patterns, severe agitation, and psychosis. Their behaviour may be erratic, bizarre, or violent.
In some cases, psychotic symptoms can linger for years after stopping the drug. Users sometimes attempt suicide while on the drug or during withdrawal.
Some users have long-lasting memory problems and reduced motor skills. School and job performance may suffer from heavy use.
Yes. Using any drugs during pregnancy can harm a developing fetus.
Crystal meth use during pregnancy may result in prenatal complications such as premature delivery. It is not clear whether the drug causes birth defects.
Using methamphetamine also decreases the mother’s appetite, which may slow the growth of the fetus in the womb and result in a lower birth weight.
Yes it is very addictive.
Tolerance to the mood-elevating and sense of well-being develops rapidly with regular use.
A regular user who stops using abruptly may experience:
Source: Health Canada