Long term effects of meth addiction (INFOGRAPHIC)

How serious can meth addiction be? A GRAPHIC on how meth works in the brain and the effects of being addicted to meth here. After review, feel free to LIKE! SHARE! PRINT IT OUT!!! We encourage use of our infographics in the office or at school.

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Long term effects of Meth addiction

Meth use affects every aspect of your life. A pictorial review of how meth affects health, relationships, work, and your self-esteem. Plus, more on the addictive properties of meth here.

Addiction = A chronic, relapsing disease characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use.

Long term effects of meth addiction (INFOGRAPHIC)

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Mechanism of Meth addiction

How does meth work in the brain? Outlined here are the basic steps of methamphetamine’s psychoactive action in the central nervous system.

1. Meth disrupts the dopamine neurotransmitter system.

2. Meth causes excess release of dopamine.

3. Meth overwhelms the process of reuptake.

4. Meth overwhelms the process of enzyme breakdown.

5. Meth causes dopamine to leak out of vesicles.

  • Dopamine regulates feelings of pleasure.
  • Dopamine affects control of movement, cognition, motivation, and reward.
  • High levels of free dopamine in the brain enhance mood and increase body movement.
  • Meth affects nucleus accumbens by increasing the release of dopamine.

How addictive is Meth?

Meth is HIGHLY addictive. Chronic use of stimulants like methamphetamines affect dopaminergic neurons in limbic reward system structures such as the VTA and nucleus accumbens, involved in reword, motivation, the experience of pleasure, and motor function. These effects underlie addiction.

Is damage caused by Meth permanent or reversible?

Permanent damage meth can cause:

  • brain damage
  • cancer
  • immune system damage
  • kidney failure
  • liver failure
  • motor activity impairment
  • premature osteoporosis
  • psychological problems

How does meth addiction affect you?

Effects on health:

  • chronic illnesses
  • immune system damage
  • malnutrition
  • permanent brain damage

Effects on work:

  • easily distracted
  • losing sense of time
  • no shows at work
  • unemployment

Effects on self esteem:

  • difficulty communicating with others
  • lack of self-esteem
  • permanent psychological problem
  • poor coping mechanisms

Effects on relationships:

  • break ups
  • decreased involvement of social life
  • estrangement
  • lack of trust
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.
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