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Physical Health Effects for Meth Abuse

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Methamphetamines are human-made stimulants that are incredibly strong and addicting. These drugs affect the central nervous system by creating a pleasurable rush to the brain by flooding it with dopamine. This powerful rush gives the user a sensation of energy and confidence.

Meth is known for wreaking havoc on the body. Meth completely deteriorates the body due to the toxicity of the ingredients that lace the meth. Freon, battery lithium, battery acid, and paint thinner are some of the elements found in meth. These ingredients age the body drastically.

What are the Short-term Effects of Meth?

Meth can affect high blood pressure and increased body temperature, and establish irregular heartbeats and rapid heart rhythms right away. Also, brain hemorrhage, the collapse of the lungs, and convulsion are a concern. These symptoms can prove to be fatal if an overdose occurs.

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What are the Long-term Effects of Meth?

Dramatic weight loss due to decreased appetite

Meth turns off the body’s hunger response. The body does not get the necessary nutrients it needs causing the stomach to shrink.

Damage to major organs

The kidneys, the lungs, the liver, the brain, and the heart are all in jeopardy of meth abuse and malnutrition. If abuse and malnutrition continue, some parts could have organ failure due to ailments generated by meth use.

  • Kidneys: Dehydration, urine retention, and high blood pressure can shut down the kidneys.
  • Lungs: Oxidative stress, constricted blood vessels, and toxins damage the lungs.
  • Liver: Hepatitis and cirrhosis can cause acute liver failure.
  • Brain: Compulsive motor activities, inability to control impulses, decreased attention span, psychotic symptoms, impaired judgment hinder brain function.
  • Heart: Clots, ruptured arteries, and risk of strokes produce cardiovascular system damage.

Abscesses and sores that cause infection.

Intravenous use of meth causes abscesses and sores on the addict’s body. A mixture of poor hygiene, low blood flow, elevated body temperature and destroyed blood cells keep the skin from healing, which turns the skin saggy and dull.

Extensive tooth decay

“Meth mouth” is the phrase coined for the tooth decay that meth users experience during drug abuse. Meth dries out the salivary glands causing bad breath, swollen gums, and cavities due to eroding enamel no longer protected by the saliva. The more meth used, the more the teeth rot, stain, or fall out.


The high of meth can last up to 12 hours. It’s typical for meth addicts to start getting high again and again. This process can keep the addict up for days on end.

What are the signs of meth addiction?

There is hope for recovery from Meth addiction. Design For Change offers a comprehensive long term residential treatment program. We change the client’s lives one step at a time; our programs provide the hope that exists in recovery. Call us today for information: 855-997-1372

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Physical Health Effects for Meth Abuse