When used for extended periods, certain drugs take a visible toll on the user—whether physically, mentally, or otherwise. Methamphetamines are notorious for leaving frequent users with distinct features and scars. But besides the physical changes, the first signs of meth use will likely be those that affect behavior, presentation, or other cognitive processes. Identifying meth use early means that, if the correct action is taken, treatment can spare individuals some of the lifelong consequences of meth use.
At California Centers for Recovery, our personalized therapy style addresses each patient’s state of mind, body, and spirit. In doing so, we bring the choice to break free of addiction within reach. Our crystal meth addiction treatment center in Los Angeles county provides local support to those struggling with meth and those closest to them. Get started, and receive a custom detox plan capable of making a real, lasting difference. Contact us online or by calling 877.328.5682 today.
The Physical Signs of Meth Abuse
Some parts of the body, inside and out, are more visibly affected by methamphetamine use than others. While the exterior differences are generally less harmful to health than faltering organs, for example, they can indicate to others the extent of meth use that has occurred. Some of the more distinct, common physical changes that occur after prolonged meth use include:
- The appearance of aged skin
- Open sores
- Pallid skin
- Tooth decay
- Dry mouth
- A sharp decline in weight
Each of these effects results from how meth interacts with the body’s normal faculties. For instance, a common effect of heavy meth use is a sensation called parasitosis—a psychiatric condition that elicits a feeling of something crawling beneath the surface layer of the skin. Compulsive scratching leads to persistent, worsening scabs and sores.
Another distinct, obvious indicator of meth use is known as “meth mouth.” This occurs as a result of constricted blood vessels in the mouth, leading to reduced blood flow to the salivary gland. Saliva is responsible for keeping teeth moisturized and protected against decay—without it, teeth are prone to falling out, and gums tend to dry out.
Other Ways Meth Affects the Body
Signs of meth use go beyond outward appearance. Some effects of meth can cause serious damage in less obvious ways or can cause harm to others. Problems that go undetected for long periods can be equally sudden, violent, or fatal. Certain behaviors present themselves especially often among meth users, including:
- Impaired motor skills
- Poor sleep
- Loss of appetite
- Heart Attack
If we expand the scope of how meth can impact one’s life, the consequences extend even further than the confines of the body. These kinds of behavior, as well as the appearance of having a history of meth, will undoubtedly lead to some attached stigma or discrimination. The social reactions to apparent meth use are extremely damaging to morale and can cause a sharp decline in self-esteem. This creates a sort of feedback loop, where low self-esteem feeds into continued meth use, and so on.
Meth Addiction Help at California Centers for Recovery
Identifying the signs of meth use is the first step in addressing the core of the problem. Sometimes, the journey to recovery can feel lonely or impossible. That’s why California Centers for Recovery offers a treatment plan that exceeds all expectations. Spend time in a safe, comfortable treatment center with luxurious amenities. Treating a drug addiction relies on momentum. The sooner you take inertia away from continuing addiction and applying it to recovery, the better the results will be.