Methamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant that can be taken orally, injected, or snorted. Meth is a very potent stimulant that can cause problems with your cognitive abilities and your physical abilities.
It is now more popular than ever and is a very dangerous drug. If you or a loved one has been taking meth, you may be wondering what the drug does and how long it will last.
Stages of a Meth High
In the stages of a meth high, an individual who has been using meth will experience various stages of drug action before finally entering into withdrawal.
The stages of a meth high can vary depending on the environment, the amount used and how often the drug is taken.
This is the starting stage of a meth high and is the stage in which the user will experience a buzz and feel excited and energetic. During this stage, very mild hallucinations may be experienced.
The high phase of using meth lasts for roughly 6-8 hours after ingestion. At this point, mood swings can occur leading to depression or aggressive behavior. This is not to be confused with the crash, which occurs later.
During the repeat phase of a meth high, as taking further doses becomes more frequent, the effects will seem less and less as time goes on. The 1-2 hour period between doses will seem like a long time and the user will be unable to experience any pleasure and can become agitated and even suffer hallucinations.
This is the most dangerous stage of using meth and lasts roughly 2-5 days. During this phase, the individual’s moods can go from normal to extremely irritable, anxious, or depressed for no reason. Aggressive behavior occurs in most cases with this phase. The user will be sleep-deprived and can become delusional or even experience paranoid hallucinations.
The meth crash occurs after the tweaking phase in which the user will feel extremely fatigued and unable to do much, feel guilt, or even suicidal thoughts. This is the time in which the individual will go into a deep sleep for about 24 to 48 hours.
This is the last stage of using meth, in which the individual has experienced days without any sleep and becomes completely sedated, making them unable to move properly or communicate. This condition may last several days until the user finally decides to seek help.
Also Read: Cocaine Vs Meth
How Long Does the Effects of Meth Last and What Affects It?
The effects of meth are both psychological and physical. The psychological effects are various forms of hallucination up to the point of psychosis. The physical effects are increased heart rate, breathing rate, blood pressure, body temperature, appetite suppression, and insomnia.
The duration of these effects varies depending on the duration that the meth is taken, how often it is taken, and by what route it is taken. As the intensity of these effects varies for each individual person based on the aforementioned factors, the amount of time that they will last differs as well.
The half-life of meth is 10 to 12 hours; however, the effects of meth should not be expected to go away completely.
The effects of meth can last for a long time after the point at which the meth has already been eliminated from the body. The methamphetamine metabolites that are present in urine for up to 3 days, depending on dosage and frequency of use, may cause a positive drug screen.
The effects of meth usually start within 15 minutes from administration and can last from 4 to 12 hours after inhalation, insufflation, or injection.
Also Read: What does Meth Taste Like
As the method of administration affects the duration of the effects of meth, so does dosage. As dosage increases, so too do both the intensity and duration of its effects.
What are Some Meth Comedown Symptoms?
When meth induces an intense high, it can be both hard to get off the meth pillow and easier to get on it. Meth comedown symptoms are strong, sometimes more powerful than that of meth highs.
Precipitated by meth’s blocking of dopamine transporters in the brain, meth comedown symptoms are experienced when these blocked transporters begin releasing dopamine at random.
The meth comedown symptoms that follow meth highs are often very uncomfortable and can include:
It is difficult for meth users to resist meth cravings. They are strong, sometimes more so than meth highs. Meth cravings can cause meth users to continue meth use, even after they want to stop.
Anxiety and Depression
Meth users experience meth comedown symptoms of anxiety and depression as meth highs wear off. These meth comedown symptoms can persist for days and even weeks after meth use.
Meth comedown symptoms of anxiety and depression can be so strong that they lead to suicide in some cases.
For this reason, it is important to seek professional help if one suspects meth use disorder.
Meth comedown symptoms of irritability are common among meth users.
Irritability can cause a wide range of strong emotions, including aggression and anger. While this is common for many substance abusers, the chances that a meth user will get into legal trouble based on their behavior increase with irritability.
Difficulty Sleeping or Excessive Fatigue
Frequently, meth recovery symptoms appear as a general feeling of weakness or tiredness that is not alleviated by rest or sleep. People coming down from meth will commonly experience difficulty sleeping or excessive fatigue as well as increased appetite.
These symptoms are related to the depletion of neurotransmitters in the brain brought on by meth use. As these chemicals are resynthesized, feelings of fatigue should subside and energy levels will return to normal.
Lack of Motivation and Focus in Meth users
Methamphetamine works by triggering the release of high levels of dopamine in the brain’s reward center. Dopamine, which is released when an individual exercises or participates in other enjoyable activities, is intimately connected to motivation and attention.
Extremely elevated levels of dopamine in the brain also contribute to feelings of euphoria and increase concentration. Methamphetamine reduces the reuptake of dopamine, which prolongs its effects by making this “happiness chemical” more readily available in the brain for longer periods.
Meth’s ability to improve focus and concentration is one reason why some people find the drug to be pleasurable and useful. But because dopamine levels are so extremely elevated, meth can have a paradoxical effect on attention by causing users to have difficulty focusing, paying attention, or concentrating.
If meth comedown symptoms are not addressed by meth rehabilitation or natural meth recovery, the meth user may find themselves back where they started with meth addiction. The best way to treat meth comedown symptoms is to seek meth rehab treatment.
Also Check out the Faces of Meth
Meth comedown symptoms can also be addressed with methods like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), mindfulness, meditation, natural food supplements, and other therapies that aim to repair the brain’s reward center.