Long-Term Effects of Meth Misuse

With nearly half a million Americans being frequent users of meth, it’s safe to say that the misuse of this drug is a common and serious problem that needs to be addressed. Consuming any drug is something that’s going to have a detrimental effect on your overall health and well-being, but meth is reported to have particularly devastating effects. At Little Creek Recovery, we know that some of these effects can be successfully overturned, although it will take a lot of time and effort. So if you are currently battling with the long-term effects of meth misuse, you should know that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Here’s our opinion on the topic.

Long-term effects of meth misuse to be aware of

Of course, the first and the most obvious long-term effect is the fact that you will develop an addiction to this substance. Frequently taking one substance is going to lead to dependence, which will then lead to addiction. Once a person develops a full-blown addiction, they will have to seek help in an Inpatient rehab facility. We know that our Men’s Residential Treatment in PA is geared toward people who exhibit all the signs of severe addiction, many of which will be showcasing meth dependence. After an addiction is formed, it won’t take long for the other detrimental effects of meth use to take place.

A pink help button.
Once you develop a severe addiction to meth, you will have to look for help in a specialized treatment facility.

You can have chronic anxiety

Individuals who experiment with drugs such as meth reportedly have higher chances of being depressed and dealing with conditions such as chronic anxiety. In fact, many research studies have shown that drug use doesn’t directly cause depression, but it does significantly magnify it. Therefore, if you know that you are prone to having depressive episodes, panic attacks, or anxiety, the last thing you should do is experiment with meth and other drugs.

Although, studies have also shown that this is precisely the time when people engage in behavior that involves drug use. Usually, people will seek solace in drugs and alcohol, as these substances are known for the high that they produce. This high is what lets you escape your reality and feel good for at least a little bit. But you should keep in mind that this high is also the thing that’s going to make you end up in Inpatient or Outpatient care in Pennsylvania. It’s important to know all the risks before engaging in any sort of behavior – especially if it involves drugs.

You can have hallucinations

Hallucinations are a common side-effect of addiction to many different drugs. People who have been dealing with meth misuse for years are very prone to imagining and seeing things. These hallucinations can be both auditory and visual, and they are not to be confused with other mental health problems. Just because a person is hallucinating due to drug use doesn’t mean that they have a mental illness that causes hallucinations, although the two can collide. When present, hallucinations can be very dangerous. They are a danger to both the addict and those in his or her surroundings. That’s why it’s important to seek timely care and prevent further problems that hallucinations can cause.

A man holding his head and thinking about the long-term effects of meth.
Hallucinations are among the most frequent long-term effects of meth misuse.

People who are misusing meth can be aggressive

Unfortunately, those individuals that experiment with drugs, in general, will go through many behavioral changes. As you can imagine, most of those changes (if not all) are going to be negative. What usually surprises the families of those people who are misusing meth is their aggressive behavior. Even if someone was very peaceful before experimenting with this drug, they could go through a complete shift in their behavior. It’s important to mention that they can be aggressive toward themselves, as well as other people.

If someone you love is suffering from meth misuse and you know that their behavior has changed, you shouldn’t shy away from offering your help. However, you should be very careful about the way you express yourself. Otherwise, you might only end up making the problem worse, as they could completely shut you out of their life.

Dental problems are one of the most common long-term effects of meth misuse

Have you ever heard of the term ‘meth mouth?’ If you have, then you are aware of the fact that meth can cause serious dental problems. Tooth decay and lost teeth, as well as rotting gums, are only some of the things that can happen. This is not only going to affect your appearance and confidence – it can also reflect on your overall health. We know that there are many health hazards that come with meth abuse. Sure enough, you can experience those same problems when having a heroin addiction in PA. But meth is known for causing significant physical changes in a person’s appearance.

But don’t despair just yet. This is one of the detrimental effects of drug use that can be fixed. Although, it’s always best to avoid it if possible. While someone with a heroin or cocaine addiction in PA can also suffer from dental problems, they are the most commonly reported problem among those who are misusing meth. It’s important for the recovering addict to take care of this problem as soon as possible, as it’s going to help them get their confidence back. Besides, it’s going to help one put their problems with addiction in the past, and try to forget about them as soon as possible.

A chair in a dentist's office.
Dental problems are one of the long-term effects of meth misuse that can be fixed.

You can experience significant memory loss

This doesn’t refer to learning problems only. Although, someone who is dealing with drug abuse can definitely have learning difficulties. Memory loss is a significant long-term side effect of meth misuse. In most instances, you are not going to forget about the existence of people who are important to you. But you best believe that you will start forgetting about important events and appointments. This is particularly true when people are under the influence of their substance of choice.

Most people equate memory loss with those who are in alcohol rehab in Pennsylvania. And it’s true that people with alcohol addiction are the ones most prone to these side effects. But there are many studies that show how meth has a huge effect on one’s memory. By working on your cognitive abilities, you can succeed to get your brain to its former level. Although, keep in mind that some brain changes that result from drug use could be permanent.

Malnutrition is a long-term side effect of meth

People who are misusing drugs can find it difficult to consume all the important nutrients that they need. Of course, one can have a problem with malnourishment due to many other reasons. And while those with marijuana addiction in PA could have a better appetite, individuals who are misusing other substances could experience appetite problems. Besides, those who are using meth regularly are probably not going to make the best dietary choices. Lots of fast food and sugary drinks are fairly common among these individuals. Anyone with a diet that relies on fast food could risk malnourishment. But when a person is suffering from the detrimental effects of a drug, their body is going to be under even greater stress.

Fruits and vegetables in a basket.
A lot of fresh food will help you get your body in a better state for recovery.

Luckily, one can reverse the effects of malnourishment by making better dietary choices. Lots of fruits, vegetables, and foods that are rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals will be vital for recovery. In fact, leading a healthy lifestyle is going to be of crucial importance for a recovering addict’s sobriety. It’s difficult to recover once you are lacking sleep or having a sedentary lifestyle.

The structure of your brain can change

This is perhaps one of the scariest long-term effects of meth, as any change to and on your brain is usually a bad sign. Unfortunately, frequent drug abuse is known for producing structural changes in the brain. Studies have shown that frequent use of meth usually leads to increased neuronal death. Long-term drug use will also rewire your brain connections and produce an increase in your dopamine levels. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot that you can do when it comes to the decreased number of neurons in the CNS. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t regain many of the normal functions of the brain that have been lost.

Usually, the sooner you begin treatment, the easier it is going to be to return to normal. That’s why we always propagate timely treatment in a rehab facility that suits your needs. The good news is that there are many rehab facilities in Pennsylvania. That’s why you will have plenty of options at your disposal, should you choose to seek treatment and get the care that you need and deserve.

Short-term effects of meth misuse

It’s always a good idea to focus on the long-term effects of meth misuse, as it can help you gain a better perspective. However, one shouldn’t discard the short-term effects either. Many people believe that taking a drug one time only isn’t something that can lead to horrible consequences. Moreover, those same people don’t believe that the one time that they do use drugs can be enough for them to develop a full-scale addiction. Unfortunately, one use of meth is all that is necessary for some people to become addicted to it.

A girl sitting on a bench, contemplating long-term effects of meth.
A lot of people make the mistake of believing that one instance of drug use can’t hurt.

In our opinion, you should never risk becoming addicted by thinking that trying out drugs one time can’t hurt. You might not know that you have one or a few of the risk factors for drug addiction present. And even if you don’t, it takes a single use of meth for you to experience some unpleasant short-term effects. They include things such as:

  • Rapid heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Tremors
  • Convulsions
  • Insomnia
  • Paranoia
  • Elevated body temperature

Take special notice

We don’t like to dwell on the worst-case scenario and the one outcome nobody wants to think about. However, we can’t ignore the fact that an overdose is a real possibility when a person is struggling with drug use. Now, a person might be more likely to suffer from an overdose once they have been taking the drug for longer periods of time. But you shouldn’t discard the fact that the opposite could happen. You could get carried away early on as you might not know how to adjust your dosage.

A couple holding hands.
There’s always plenty of support available, so you don’t have to go through recovery alone.

In some cases, an overdose is the most likely outcome when a person is going through recovery. If you attempt to go through withdrawal by yourself, you might not be able to resist the temptation. And when having a strong craving for drugs, you will be a lot more likely to let yourself go. That’s why getting access to Medically Assisted Treatment is important when going through drug withdrawal.

The bottom line

The long-term effects of meth misuse can have devastating consequences on your health and well-being. Some of them, unfortunately, can never be reversed. Others can be addressed through proper treatment and care. At Little Creek Recovery, we know that there is suitable help available for every person. That’s why we want to help you recover at a pace that works best for you. Don’t hesitate to contact us and get a tailored treatment plan. Our specialists are going to focus on your individual needs and take the circumstances of your addiction into consideration. That’s the only way to be able to return back to your normal life and maintain your sobriety in the long run.

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