In fact, according to the 2016 National Drug Threat Survey, nearly one-third (31.8%) of responding agencies stated that meth was the worst drug threat to their communities. It is also still the greatest drug menace in the U.S. Southwest, and also dominates areas in the Central West, Southeast, and Pacific.
Some drug abusers prefer meth over opioids and other drugs for many reasons, such as the increase in attention and energy it provides. Meth can also induce a more intense high than cocaine, and the effects last for a significantly longer period.
Unfortunately, everything surrounding meth, from ingredients and the method of manufacturing to using, is hazardous.
Ingredients commonly found in meth include the following:
- Ephedrine/Pseudoephedrine, which is found in some cough and cold medicines and diet pills. In large quantities, these substances can do damage the respiratory system, nervous system, and heart.
- Acetone, which is flammable, is found in nail polish remover and paint thinner.
- Anhydrous ammonia, which is found in fertilizer and certain cleaners, and can result in a toxic gas when mixed with other chemicals.
- Hydrochloric acid, which is used to make plastic, and is corrosive enough to eat away flesh.
- Lithium, which is highly flammable/explosive and can burn skin, can be found in batteries.
- Red phosphorus is a flammable chemical that is found on matchboxes, as well as in road flares and other explosives.
- Toluene, which can be found in brake fluid, is corrosive enough to dissolve rubber.
- Sodium Hydroxide or lye, which is highly corrosive, is used to dissolve roadkill.
- Sulfuric Acid, which is found in drain cleaner or toilet cleaner, is corrosive and can burn skin.
Moreover, each ingredient related to meth-making is dangerous to humans on its own. This means that both producing and using meth is hazardous, unhealthy, and even life-threatening, and should unquestionably be avoided.
Meth Ingredients: How is Meth Made?
The intention of the article is not to inform people how to make methamphetamine at home, as producing it is incredibly dangerous and using it is likely to result in addiction. Therefore, we offer only the following summary:
Meth is “cooked” using the above ingredients using a chemical reaction and the addition of a solvent to form crystals. The entire process is extremely hazardous, and the components used are toxic, corrosive, flammable, and explosive.
Signs of a Meth Lab
A house or building may contain a meth lab if you notice several of the following signs outside:
- Blacked-out or covered windows.
- Chemical cans or drums such as Drano, iodine crystals, lye, antifreeze, etc. lying around the yard.
- Extensive security, such as “Private Property” signs, surveillance cameras, or fences, especially when no animals appear to be present.
- Hoses hanging from windows.
- Heaps of trash.
- Residents seem secretive or paranoid.
- The smell of solvents.
- Visitors come and go at unusual hours, especially late at night.
A house may be a meth lab if you notice the following inside:
- Ammonia, camping fuel, propane tanks, or starter fluid.
- Dismantled smoke detectors.
- Empty pill bottles, and cans of alcohol, toluene, and paint thinner.
- Funnels and plastic tubing.
- Lab equipment, like glass tubes, beakers, Bunsen burners, and large plastic containers.
- A large amount of cat litter.
- Many stoves, hot plates, or blow torches.
- Mason jars or other glass containers, melted pots and pans.
- Numerous cold medicines or non-prescription weight-loss pills boxes/containers.
- Red-stained coffee filters.
If you believe that you may have located a meth lab, do not approach it, please call 911 immediately.
Signs of Meth Use
Some of the most common symptoms and signs of meth use include the following:
- Picking at skin or hair
- Dilated pupils
- Rapid eye movement
- Reduced appetite and weight loss
- Insomnia and odd sleeping habits
- Sudden outbursts or extreme moodiness
- Concerning changes in physical appearance
Tweaking is a state that may occur toward the end of a drug binge in which the person can no longer achieve a high from meth use.
As the person desperately tries to experience feelings of euphoria, they are left with only intense cravings, as well as the inability to sleep, the feeling of bugs crawling under the skin, hallucinations, and possibly full-blown psychosis.
Treatment for Meth Addiction
Addiction is a devastating and dangerous consequence of meth abuse, and can adversely impact the lives of those using as well as everyone around them. Fortunately, meth abuse and addiction are very treatable using a comprehensive approach that involves a medical detox, inpatient and outpatient treatment, group support, and long-term aftercare.
Our professional staff specialize in addiction and provide patients with the skills they need to achieve sobriety and enjoy longlasting recovery and wellness. You CAN regain your life! Call us as soon as possible – we can help!