The Damage is Done–Now What? 5 Reasons Meth Addiction Doesn’t Just End with Discontinued Use

Anyone who’s used meth for any length of time has a good idea of how powerful this drug can be. Meth, short for methamphetamine, is one of the most powerful stimulant-based drugs on the market and is highly addictive.

During the course of a developing meth addiction, this drug’s damaging effects snowball over time, interfering with major systems throughout the brain and body. By the time a person reaches a point where he or she wants to stop using, the damage has already been done so the addiction lives on.

Here are five reasons why meth addiction doesn’t end after discontinuing use:

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5 Reasons Meth Addiction Doesn’t End

1. Physical Dependence

Meth Addiction

Meth addiction can cause an inability to experience emotions.

The seemingly boundless energy surges brought on by meth wreak havoc on the brain as well as on the body’s major systems. According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, discontinuing meth leaves the body in a perpetual state of physical dependence.

Under these conditions, a person will likely feel sickly, as in weak, achy and fatigued for months after discontinuing drug use.

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2. Inability to Experience Emotions

One of the most profound aftereffects of meth addiction leaves users incapable of experiencing emotion of any kind. This condition, in and of itself, can be unsettling in terms of feeling detached from others and life in general.

This condition results from the damage done to the limbic system, which is the area of the brain that regulates emotions. In effect, months or years of meth abuse essentially depletes the brain’s neurotransmitter supplies. This means, the brain can no longer produce the chemicals that the limbic system relies on to function.

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3. Inability to Cope with Daily Life

As with any form of addiction, meth addiction most impairs a person’s belief that he or she can cope with daily life without the effects of the drug, according to the Illinois Attorney General site. In essence, the damaging effects of meth on the brain’s reward system creates a state of psychological dependence to the point a person “needs” the drug’s effects to carry out daily life affairs.

4. Mental Breakdown

Meth addiction wreaks havoc on the brain’s chemical system; especially the areas that regulate thinking, emotions and impulse control. Consequently, people who discontinue meth use stand to experience a full-blown mental breakdown in the absence of the drug’s effects.

Signs of mental breakdown typically take the form of:

  • Severe anxiety, or panic episodes
  • Nightmares
  • Hallucinations
  • Paranoia
  • Severe depression
  • Suicidal tendencies
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5. Relapse Potential

In light of meth addiction’s aftereffects, it’s all but impossible for a person to maintain abstinence for any length of time without some form of treatment help. Even in cases where users go through a detox treatment program, the damage left behind by meth essentially rewires the brain’s chemical pathways and structural makeup.

Under these conditions, the potential for relapse runs incredibly high, placing a person at even greater danger of overdose and death. Ultimately, the need for ongoing treatment is critical if a person is to have any chance at overcoming meth’s hold over his or her life.

If you’re struggling with meth addiction and need help finding a treatment program that can address your needs, please feel free to call our toll-free helpline at 800-654-0987 to speak with one of our addiction specialists.

The In’s the Out’s and the In-Between’s of Meth

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