Monday, September 25th, 2017

Amphetamine Use


What are amphetamines?

Amphetamines belong to a class of drugs that are better known as stimulants. This is because amphetamines speed up the messages going between the brain and the body. Not all amphetamines are illicit drugs such as cocaine and meth. Some amphetamines are legally prescribed by doctors. These amphetamines are used to treat conditions such as ADHD and narcolepsy. Many people do use amphetamines illegally to become intoxicated or get “high”. Amphetamines can be produced in backyards within laboratories and when they are mixed with other substances can be very harmful and produce unpleasant effects.

Common street names for amphetamine

The common street names for amphetamines are speed, fast, up, uppers, louee, goey, and whiz. Crystal methamphetamine is known as ice, shabu, crystal meth, crystal, or glass.

How are amphetamines used?

Amphetamines are used by swallowing, injecting or smoking. Amphetamines can also be used by snorting. People use amphetamines for multiple reasons. Some people engage in amphetamine use to get “high” and others use amphetamines to help them stay awake for long periods of time. There are also people who use amphetamines to improve their performance in sports or at work. Amphetamines increase endurance and reduce tiredness.

The effects of amphetamine use

The effects of amphetamine use vary from person to person. How amphetamine use effects a person depends on multiple different things such as their size, weight, and health. The effects of amphetamine use also depend on the amount taken. There is no safe dosage of amphetamines. Amphetamine use always can have unwanted side effects.

The immediate effects of amphetamine use, depending on how they are taken, can be felt immediately through smoking or injecting, or within 30 minutes if snorted or swallowed.

Amphetamine use can cause multiple different effects such as:

  • Feelings of euphoria, excitement, and a sense of wellbeing
  • Increased confidence and motivation
  • A sense of power and superiority over other people
  • Increased talkativeness
  • Repetition of simple acts
  • Increased libido
  • Paranoia
  • Hallucinations
  • Irritability, hostility and aggression
  • Feeling more awake and alert
  • Abrupt shifts in thought and speech that can make people hard to understand
  • Enlarged pupils

The physical and more dangerous effects of amphetamine use are but are not limited to:

  • Dry mouth
  • Increased breathing rate
  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Chest pain
  • Reduced appetite
  • Stomach cramps
  • Increased sweating
  • Increased body temperature
  • Itching, picking, and scratching
  • Feelings of increased strength

Higher doses of amphetamines can cause severely dangerous effects including coma and even death. Here are some of the most dangerous effects of amphetamine use caused by higher dosages:

  • Blurred vision
  • Tremors
  • Irregular breathing
  • Loss of coordination
  • Collapse
  • Rapid pounding heart
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Stroke
  • Violent or aggressive behavior

High and frequent doses of amphetamine can also create an amphetamine psychosis which is characterized by paranoid delusions, hallucinations and bizarre, aggressive, and violent behavior. This psychosis usually disappears once amphetamine use stops. Once amphetamine use is stopped the person using the drugs will feel negative effects. This is known as a “come down” which is strongly associated with amphetamine use. The effects felt during the come down are:

  • Feeling restless, irritable, and anxious
  • Aggression that may lead to violence
  • Tension
  • Radical mood swings
  • Depression
  • Lethargy
  • Total exhaustion
  • Paranoia

Amphetamine use is very dangerous and while it is not physically addictive like painkillers it can cause severe long term effects that are damaging to the entire body. Depending on the route of administration with amphetamines these long term effects can vary in their severity. Either way amphetamines are a dangerous drug that should not be taken lightly. Amphetamine use can be overcome though through outside help such as drug treatment or rehab.