Meth Addiction Treatment Center
Our drug abuse treatment center in Kentucky is dedicated to providing evidence-based, high-quality addiction treatment for Kentucky residents and beyond.
Understanding Substance Abuse
Methamphetamine or “meth” addiction is considered one of the most dangerous of all substance addictions. The 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicated nearly 1.6 million American’s reported using meth in the last year. Although the average age of first use in most cases is between twenty-one and twenty-five, individuals as young as age twelve struggle with a methamphetamine use disorder leading to clinically significant impairments resulting from ongoing meth use. The sobering statistics regarding methamphetamine addiction do not stop there. The National Institute on Drug Abuse indicates of the 64,000 overdose-related deaths in 2016, nearly 8,000 were linked to methamphetamine use. In the same year, Kentucky had the fifth highest death rate due to drug overdose in the United States. Although data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate fentanyl remains the deadliest drug in Kentucky and other eastern states, the overdose rate linked to methamphetamine use continues to rise.
The Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet release data related to drug overdose and overdose-related death each year. In 2016, there were 260 overdose deaths linked to methamphetamines. These numbers have continued to rise dramatically since then. In 2017 the same report noted 359 deaths, and in 2018 there were 428 deaths explicitly linked to methamphetamine overdose. That represents a 64.6 increase between 2016 and 2018 alone!
In August of 2021, the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet released data for 2020. Although some of the data may be skewed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it represents a sobering rise in overall drug-related overdose throughout the state. The 2020 Overdose Fatality Report showed that nearly 2000 Kentucky residents died from overdoses in 2020, representing a nearly 50% increase in overdose deaths compared with 2019. Although opioids were detected in almost 90% of cases, the increased overdose rate is also exacerbated by the widespread availability of methamphetamine, which is cheaper than other opioids or fentanyl in Kentucky. In 2020, methamphetamines were detected in 801 cases, an increase from 517 in the 2019 report.
Methamphetamine is a highly addictive and powerful stimulant drug that impacts the function of the central nervous system. The central nervous system or CNS is comprised of the brain, spinal cord, and associated nerves throughout the body. Methamphetamine goes by several slang or “street” names. Some of the most well-known include meth, crystal, blue, and several others. Methamphetamine is an odorless, bitter-tasting crystallized powder that is white. It dissolves easily and quickly in water or alcohol.
Initially, methamphetamine was used as an ingredient in nasal decongestants and inhalers to help with symptoms related to asthma and congestion. In its legal form, the drug helps reduce symptoms related to chronic conditions. However, it can also lead to decreased appetite, feelings of euphoria, excitability, and increased activity in users. Unlike legally produced amphetamine, illegally produced methamphetamine leads to much larger doses entering the brain, making it significantly more potent when taken in equivalent amounts to a legal alternative.
Illegally produced methamphetamine is also longer lasting and inevitably leads to harmful effects on the central nervous system. This makes methamphetamine a drug with a high potential for addiction and potential overdose. Methamphetamine can be introduced to the body in various ways, including smoking, swallowing, snorting, or mixed with liquids and injected intravenously. Upon entering the body, methamphetamine works within the brain to increase activity in specific areas. When methamphetamine is used, specific functions in the body occur at a faster rate. These include vital life-sustaining functions such as blood pressure, respiration, body temperature, and heart rate.
Additionally, methamphetamine increases the dopamine response in the brain. Dopamine is a naturally occurring chemical messenger in the brain responsible for feelings of happiness and pleasure. Increased dopamine or the ‘dopamine rush’ is responsible for the intense “high” associated with methamphetamines (and many other drugs). The desire to recreate this high once it wears off is what makes methamphetamine extraordinarily addictive and dangerous.
How we Help
We provide evidence-based treatment for addiction at our drug rehab center in KY.
How to Know if Someone is Addicted
Signs & Symptoms of a Meth Addiction
Long-term methamphetamine use leads to physical and psychological impacts on the body. The first and most commonly noted symptom of methamphetamine abuse is a loss of interest in things that were once important. Things such as employment, family, and hobbies all fall out of importance in favor of seeking and using methamphetamines. Someone who struggles with methamphetamine addiction will exhibit various physical, behavioral, and emotional symptoms. Because addiction is a disease that affects everyone differently, some signs and symptoms may be more apparent than others. However, the most common generally include:
Another common and easy-to-see symptom of methamphetamine use is “tweaking.” Tweaking is characterized by a period of high levels of anxiety and insomnia. Depending on the severity and the individual, this can last between three and 15 days. It often occurs at the end of a drug binge when someone using meth can no longer achieve a rush or a high from using. Tweaking leads to significant psychological effects such as irritability, confusion, and paranoia. It can also lead to violent outbursts and hallucinations.
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Preparing for Treatment
Meth Addiction Treatment Center in Kentucky
Overcoming methamphetamine addiction can be dangerous if attempted outside of a professional meth addiction treatment center. The first step for many who are ready to stop using meth is detox. Although withdrawing from a stimulant drug like meth is not as physically dangerous as other substances such as opioids or alcohol, withdrawal from meth can be unpleasant and, in some cases, produce seizures. Methamphetamine withdrawal also increases the risk of overdose in the event of a relapse. For this reason, it is best to detox from meth in a Kentucky residential meth addiction treatment center like Robert Alexander Center for Recovery. As part of detox, a team of trained professionals will help you work through the most challenging withdrawal symptoms, ensuring you are safe and successful at detox.
After detox is complete, you can transition to a therapeutic addiction treatment program where you will learn and practice the skills necessary to continue lasting recovery from meth addiction. Behavioral therapy is the most effective treatment model for meth addiction. The most commonly used behavioral therapy is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT encourages participants to examine the root causes behind addictive behavior. Once you understand the events or circumstances that lead to meth use, you are better able to replace those behaviors with healthy, safer coping mechanisms.
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What to Expect at the Robert Alexander Center
Get Help at Our Kentucky Meth Addiction Treatment Program
If you are a loved one struggling with an addiction to methamphetamines, it is vital to seek treatment at a meth addiction treatment program. Ongoing meth addiction and use eventually lead to changes in the brain’s chemistry and irreversible damage to critical body systems and blood vessels in the brain, increasing one’s risk of stroke. Other long-term effects of untreated methamphetamine addiction include liver and kidney failure, seizures, sudden cardiac death, respiratory issues, increased risk of overdose, and death.
Our team of addiction treatment professionals at our Kentucky meth treatment program will work with you to design a treatment program based on your unique treatment needs and goals. We offer a full range of treatment options to help you achieve freedom from methamphetamine addiction. Throughout your treatment program, our team at Robert Alexander Center for Recovery is here to provide the support and guidance you need to put addiction in the past. If you or a loved one are ready to begin your sobriety journey, contact us today to learn how addiction treatment at Robert Alexander Center for Recovery meth rehab in Kentucky can help you take your first steps.
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