Amphetamine Addiction and Rehabilitation

Last Edited: March 15, 2020
Patricia Howard, LMFT, CADC
Clinically Reviewed
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and certified by an addiction professional.

Dangers of Amphetamine Abuse

Amphetamine abuse is an issue that’s all around us and deserves our attention. Although Amphetamines at first may seem to enhance an individual’s level of awareness, as well as euphoric feelings, the abuse of this drug seems to be more harmful than helpful. Amphetamines are both illegal and legal in the form of a prescription, however even though prescribed this drug is psychologically addictive and can take over the reins in anyone’s life.

Amphetamine abuse depletes an individual’s body of energy, demanding more from one’s system due to lack of sleeping and eating. It is also important to understand that Individuals who abuse Amphetamine are likely to experience serious malnutrition as well as brain damage in addition to mental health issues. When stopping the use or abuse of Amphetamine containing drugs, an individual often goes through heavy, unbearable panic alongside depression and extreme fatigue.

Abusing Amphetamines for long periods of time, also known as chronic abuse, commonly produces psychosis and paranoia that closely resembles the mental illness of schizophrenia. When paranoia takes over, people may pick at their skin, be obsessively preoccupied with their thoughts, experience visual and auditory hallucinations.

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Street Names for Amphetamine

Amphetamines are known as prescription stimulants as well as illegally manufactured street drugs. A few street terms for Amphetamine include: Speed, Uppers, Black Beauties, Ice, Crank, Bennies.

Amphetamine Effects

Individuals who abuse Amphetamines are likely to undergo a variety of harmful effects. Effects of Amphetamine abuse range from mental, physical and emotional health – to one’s overall wellness and stability in life. However, the damaging effects produced by Amphetamines go even deeper than that. Individuals who use and abuse Amphetamines on a regular basis are known to experience difficulties with personal relationships, work, school studies, the law, commitments and finances. Research has also found that individuals who abuse drugs like Amphetamines are at a higher risk for developing disorders that are related to brains dopamine production. An example of this is a well-known dopamine related disorder called Parkinson’s disease.

Warning signs of Amphetamine abuse in a loved one

Destruction of relationships with loved ones as well as connection within families is perhaps one of the most upsetting aspects of Amphetamine addiction. Moreover, being able to recognize when a loved one is actively abusing Amphetamines can be tough. Our ability to read between the lines is often blurred by our personal relations with the individuals and their importance in our lives. However, there are many signs you can keep a look out for.

Do you have a loved one that has recently displayed an unexpected and drastic change in his or her mood, attitude, daily interests, behavior and overall emotion stability? A change in behavior may be an abuse, if any of these signs are familiar, reach out for help.

Have you noticed your loved one becoming continuously more withdrawn from normal activities, interests, responsibilities or from friends and family? Is your loved one partaking in unusual, risky and or careless behaviors? If so, your loved one may be abusing Amphetamines.

Has your loved one experienced an abrupt change in the need for sleep, sleeping patterns, a serious decrease in appetites, with an increase and burst of energy? A sudden alteration of normal and daily routines is often a clear-cut sign of current drug abuse, such as Amphetamine.

Factual Dangers: Amphetamine

There many reasons behind the beginning of an individual’s Amphetamine addiction. For some Amphetamine abuse begins with a prescription medication, while for others, the abuse starts in aim to self-medicate to escape the pains of life. Whatever the exact cause may be, being properly suited with the facts about Amphetamine can serve as a real benefit when trying to get a loved one out of his or her addiction. Here are a few facts to help you better understand Amphetamines.

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True Stories of Addiction: Andrew’s Story of Finding a Path to Recovery

After high school Andrew was introduced to a drug like Amphetamine. His addiction spiraled out of control but he did recover with the help of a 12-step program. – View all episodes now

Amphetamine Rehab Treatment

Various types of treatments are available to individuals who are addicted to Amphetamines. Initially, an individual goes through a period of detox from Amphetamine substances. After the initial period, treatment options generally include inpatient or outpatient rehab and possibly sober living houses.

Regardless of the stage or progression of Amphetamine abuse, it should be addressed for the overall physical, psychological and social well-being of the specific individual. Rehab for Amphetamine abuse and addiction lends a hand of hope to the individuals with little or no hope left. Rehabilitation also gives individuals the opportunity when impacted by the disease of addiction to take on a new path and pursue a new life in recovery. Of course, experiencing a variety of feelings such a stress is a normal response to any circumstance surrounding Amphetamine addiction and getting on a footing to recovery. Most people search to find what rehab or treatment center will be the best or be the most effective in the long run. Overall, rehab will end up being a different experience for everyone.

Fighting back against addiction is different for each person. Although the journey from addiction to recovery is an independent one, it is possible. We urge you to reach out and take the extra few minutes to consider rehab.

Amphetamine Detox Treatment

The first few days or even weeks of treatment for an Amphetamine addiction may not seem easy but we assure you it is worth every minute. Before an individual can receive further treatment, substance detoxification is necessary. The physical portion of Amphetamine detox takes approximately two weeks to complete.

After detox, clients enter the part of the treatment program that will work to address the underlying causes of the addiction. During detox, an individual will experience symptoms of withdrawal from Amphetamine. Amphetamine withdrawal symptoms may feel overbearing and impossible, but that is where medically monitored treatment comes in. The point of the detox phase is to rid your body of the physical dependence that was developed during your addiction. Going to a detox facility is important not just for your comfortability but your safety as well.

Detoxing alone at home without medical professionals is dangerous. Starting detox at a licensed facility or treatment center is suggested, because they can monitor your vitals, ensuring you have everything needed to have safe and effective withdrawal period Once the detox process is completed is when the Amphetamine addiction treatment really begins. Although detox sets an individual in motion to receptivity to treatment services, alone detox is not considered a form of treatment.

Addiction to Amphetamine

Amphetamine addiction is best described as the inability to stop using of the drug no matter the circumstances. Although people that find themselves physically dependent on Amphetamine and have a desire to stop, they may not be able to follow through.

Addiction is a strong disease that centers in an individual’s brain. This makes breaking away from Amphetamine addiction and the disease on pure will power simply not possible. Addiction takes place through altering a person’s brain chemistry and ultimately changing the way it functions completely. It is important to understand that this change that can take place is out of the person’s control and will power. The disease convinces an individual that the abuse of Amphetamine is necessary to meet their basic needs at the level of survival. Amphetamine addiction causes an individual’s brain to need the substance to stay alive.

At the same time, while the mind obsessively needs and craves the drug, an individual body begins to require larger amounts of the substance just to be able to function in everyday life. Today, there is an abundance of education on the disease of addiction, which if heeded will help people understand the dangers of even beginning use of Amphetamine substances. If are living with an Amphetamine addiction please reach, out you don’t have to do this alone. We will walk you through the recovery process to make changes you want in your life.

Amphetamine Dependency

Amphetamine dependence can happen to anyone at any time. Especially, if a person receives a prescription for stimulants to treat a disorder. Whether you take your prescription as prescribed or abuse the Amphetamine medication, you can still become dependent. Individuals who use Amphetamines on a regular basis are susceptible to developing a tolerance. Developing a tolerance requires an individual to take more of the substance to get the same physical or mental effects. It is common for individuals who develop a tolerance to face Amphetamine dependence.

Often, Amphetamine use and abuse becomes of paramount importance in one’s life, taking over in many, if not all areas of his or her life. Dependence leads to addiction, ultimately making the end of drug abuse difficult. Dependence generally includes a consistent desire to use Amphetamine with trouble controlling one’s use. When an individual is dependent on Amphetamines they will likely persist in abusing the drug despite any detrimental consequences that result from the abuse.

Once you become dependent on the drug, you will find that it is needed to carry out everyday life and responsibilities. Physical dependence results in an individual’s body adapting to Amphetamine use and needing it to function. Psychological dependence is the strong, unbreakable urge and craving to use the drug, whether it be all the time or in specific work or social settings.

Intervention for Amphetamine Abuse

If someone you love is having a hard time overcoming Amphetamine abuse, then you may need to step in and lend a helping hand. Scheduling a professional intervention can shed some light on your loved one’s life. Holding an intervention has the potential to be an effective wake up call to your loved one. Let him or her know that people care and want to see him or her get the help needed.

People who have a substance abuse problem might not realize that their problem is hurting more than just themselves. The goal of an intervention should be to get your them the help they need, it is not to criticize or judge him or her for drug abuse.

Interventions are most often effective in assisting individuals in the discovery that they may need treatment for substance abuse. If you are unsure of whether to have an intervention for your loved one or not, reach out and we will discuss your options with you. If you decide a professional interventionist is right for you, we will help you get in contact with a professional that is right for you. Professional interventionists are a great aid I helping you communicate with your loved one while providing a non-threatening and neutral stance in the meetings. If someone you love is abusing Amphetamine and living with an Amphetamine addiction, there are many routes to get him or her help. Staging an intervention is highly recommended as it is the safest and most effective way to get your loved one the help he or she truly needs. – Learn More

Recovery from Amphetamine Abuse

Although recovery from Amphetamine abuse is not an overnight matter, it is possible. When deciding to get treatment for Amphetamine abuse, there are approximately four different stages that will occur. The four different stages include, the acute, continual abstinence, early remission and the sustained remission stage.

The acute stage alleviates physical symptoms of withdrawal lasting around 3 to 5 days. The abstinence stage takes place over about a months’ time and the individual focuses on behavioral patterns and changes. Early remission often lasts for 12 months. And lastly the sustained remission stage remains as long as the individual does not use or abuse Amphetamines.

The most effective treatments are 12-step support groups, cognitive behavioral therapy and education on the disease of addiction. These methods of treatment are specifically designed to assist individuals in changing their patterns in thinking, behaviors, expectations and helps to develop coping skills for tolerating stress. Going to rehab for Amphetamine abuse will provide the resources needed to get back on your feet, living a happy and substance free life. Evidence based treatment programs are tailored to meet your specific needs. Generally, treatment programs last anywhere from 30, 60 and 90 days. Finding personal recovery from Amphetamine abuse is possible. You can be happy and free from the pain of substance addiction with a few steps.

Dangers of Amphetamine Overdose

Amphetamine abuse is highly dangerous and overdose is possible whether a person is taking the drugs for the first time, recreationally, or chronically. Amphetamine overdose often leads to a severity of health issues. The most common overdose complications include, confusion, nausea, weakness shaking, vomiting, seizures, heart failure, stroke, coma, and psychosis. However, severe health complications are not the end of the road for Amphetamine overdose, fatality is.

Having knowledge of the overdose potential when you or someone you love is using or abusing Amphetamines is important. When taking Amphetamines in large and high doses, there is an increased risk of experiencing an overdose. This risk rows as the person’s tolerance goes up. Individuals who overdose on Amphetamines commonly experience high agitation. Overdose symptoms can put the individual as well as those around them at serious risk, through behaviors including paranoia, violence and aggression. Ultimately, an Amphetamine overdose takes place when substance overtakes a person’s physiological system and overwhelms the body.

Overdose symptoms range from unpleasant to even life-threatening, such as a heart attack stroke or death. Since 1999, the rate of overdose deaths due to prescription medications including stimulants such as Amphetamines have been on the rise. Amphetamine overdose varies widely and depends on the individual as well as the potency of the substances abused. Larger doses of stimulants raise an individual’s physical temperature as well as blood pressure to unsafe levels which can cause the heart to beat irregularly. – Learn More

Amphetamine Use, Abuse and Dependency

The substance Amphetamine was first synthesized in the late 1880s. At the time, the drug was not noticed for its stimulating effects. In 1965, the FDA limited all Amphetamine based drugs to prescription use only. Amphetamines are categorized under a group of synthetic psychoactive prescription drugs that are found to be highly addictive.

These psychoactive drugs are also known as Central Nervous System stimulants. The group of Amphetamines includes Meth Amphetamine, Dextro Amphetamine and Amphetamine. Use of Amphetamines induces an increase in overall attention, alertness, hyperactivity, concentration, sociability, while decreasing appetite. However, the effects produced and experienced do not come without a cost.

Amphetamines mimic adrenaline in the human body and are known to result in dependence as well as addiction. Amphetamines have the potential to change a person’s entire psychological chemistry by altering the dopamine pathways of the brain. Short-term use whether recreational or experimental, often unnoticeably turns into a long-term, life-distorting addiction. When prescription stimulants are abused, the creation of dopamine in one’s brain increases at a drastic rate. An increase of dopamine ultimately leads to disrupted communication throughout brain cells and heightens the risk of developing addiction.

Stimulant prescription medications are commonly utilized for treatment of ADHD, narcolepsy and obesity. The most known prescription Amphetamines are Adderall, Dextrostat, Dexedrine and Desoxyn. Abuse of Amphetamines, whether obtained through a personal and legitimate prescription or illicitly purchased on the street, still pose a high risk for serious complications later in life. Serious complications range from not only a physical level but a psychiatric level as well. From a social stand point, Amphetamines are often abused in aim of losing weight, increasing one’s energy and overall performance in day to day life.

To improve academic performance, many students, especially at a college level are reported to abuse Amphetamines for study purposes. Although it is not true many believe that prescription stimulants are, “smart drugs” that enhance your cognitive abilities and make you smarter. Statements from the National Institute on Drug Abuse indicate that although these stimulants do help with wakefulness, studies have shown that they do not enhance thinking ability or learning.  Reports from SAMHSA indicate that over 89.5 percent of college students who took the prescription stimulant Adderall were abusing it. Among the 89.5 percent of students over half of them were heavy Alcohol drinkers.

For individuals living with an Amphetamine addiction, the stimulating properties of the drug are known to make them feel more relaxed and comfortable in a vast range of social situations. Amphetamines are abused in several different ways. Reports have shown that Amphetamines are often snorted or injected, however the substance is also smoked or taken orally. When individuals achieve, the euphoria produced from prescription Amphetamines it is usually a result of pills being either crushed and snorted or mixed in water and injected.

Today, abuse of Amphetamines in the U.S. has become a major problem. Additionally, the long term effects of adhd medication abuse can cause serious complications in a persons life. In 2015, a report from SAMHSA revealed that over 17.2 million Americans used prescription stimulants, while 5.3 million were reported to abuse them. Prescription stimulants such as Adderall and illicitly made Amphetamines, like Meth Amphetamine, are not only addictive but disruptive to an individual progress and success in life.

Amphetamine addiction can happen to anyone, even if the drug is taken as prescribed by a doctor. Becoming addicted to Amphetamines does not only happen to those who abuse the drug. So, whether Amphetamines are abused or taken as prescribed, the disease of addiction does not discriminate. Amphetamines, much like other substances, dramatically changes the pleasure response in a person’s brain chemistry. Ultimately, Amphetamine exhausts pleasure receptors and eliminates the body’s ability to feel anything good or pleasurable without it. When not using the drug, chronic Amphetamine abusers have strong side effects of depression, suicidal thoughts and ideations.

Amphetamine drug cravings are quite powerful and can make stopping use of the substance challenging. A common challenge in individuals living with Amphetamine addiction is poly-substance or poly-drug use. Research has found that most Amphetamine abusers also engage in abuse of other drugs. Poly-drug use is said to increase the effects produced by Amphetamines, which is at the least, fatally dangerous.

The use or abuse of several drugs does complicate the detox and recovery process from addiction. Rest assured recovery and a happy sober life is possible even with poly-drug abuse. Whether you or a loved one is living with an addiction to Amphetamine or various drugs, there is a way out. You can get your life back and learn to love living again. Reach out for help.

Short-term effects

The effects of Amphetamine abuse can take place instantly after consumption. The effects experienced will change based on the individual who is abusing the drug. There are many immediate and short-term effects, which include but are not limited to, a sudden change in behavior, mood swings, irritability and being unpleasant then suddenly happy and bright.

The short-term effects that get progressively worse as Amphetamine abuse continues focus on symptoms that alter one’s mood, behavior and physiological system.  The mood symptoms of Amphetamines abuse often include Euphoria, depression, alertness, and anxiety. Common behavioral symptoms are grinding of teeth, increased confidence, unrealistic thinking, not eating for an extended period, hostility, as well as excessive and fast talking.

Amphetamine abuse also causes individuals to withdrawal from family and friends, lose interest in hobbies and other favorite activities.

Additional effects are not being well groomed, often dirty, a change in sleeping patterns, risky behaviors, runny rose, red or glossy eyes, constant scratching paranoia and an increase in aggression. The longer an individual is exposed to Amphetamine abuse without intervention, short term effects are likely to turn into chronic and even life-lasting effects. Amphetamine abuse is detrimental to one’s overall health and there is a way out. Recovery from Amphetamine addiction is possible. If you are noticing any of these signs in a loved one or you personally need treatment, call us, we can help.

Long-term effects

While some effects of Amphetamine addiction are short lived, continual abuse of Amphetamine drugs can result in irreversible damages to the brain and body. Chronic Amphetamine abuse can result in various negative effects. Some of the long-term effects of Amphetamine abuse include, ulcers, malnutrition, heart rhythm disorders, fatigue and weakness, behavioral changes, skin disorders, and psychosis. Amphetamine abuse over a long period of time is accompanied by a high tolerance, meaning more of the drug is needed to achieve the same affect.

When tolerance is built, withdrawal symptoms become common. Many chronic Amphetamine users experience heavily severe and even suicidal lows. Abusing Amphetamines heavily for an extended amount of time heightens the risks and potential side effects, which are known to get progressively worse over time. Amphetamines cause the heart muscles to become weaker which can result in life-long complications. In addition to a weaken physiological system, stimulants abuse changes the brains chemistry, resulting in mood and behavioral complications in the long run.

Prescription stimulants are known to cause damage to the cardiovascular system and heart when abused for an extended amount of time. Prescription stimulants used to treat ADHD and narcolepsy are reported to result in high blood pressure, heart murmurs and sudden cardiac death. If you or a loved one is living with Amphetamine addiction it is critical to get them the help necessary to get back to a health way of life.

True Stories of Addiction: Amphetamine’s Strike Back

Aline’s addiction to Amphetamines and other drugs at a very young age. Her mother was only 15 years old when Aline was born. The father was older but he had his own problems and was very abusive. Aline’s mother couldn’t handle the pressure of raising a child so her abusive father was granted custody. As Aline grew older, she knew she didn’t deserve the way her father treated her, so, she ran away to her Amphetamine dealers house who also happened to be her boyfriend. Aline’s Amphetamine addiction took her down and she thought there was no way back up. However, after she was arrested, she found recovery and has been sober since.

Inpatient Amphetamine Rehab

For those who suffer from an Amphetamine addiction, there is hope for a successful recovery. There are a wide variation of rehab centers and programs available. For Amphetamine addiction and abuse, an inpatient treatment facility is recommended. Inpatient rehabilitation has the top success rates and addresses the underlying factors of an individual’s addiction.

Inpatient rehab for Amphetamine abuse also provides individuals with a socialization aspect. The social aspect of treatment helps each person to have an easier time reintegrating into society after finishing his or her time in rehab. The social portion of treatment offers support from other people in recovery that can relate, with personal experience, to those just beginning their journey in recovery. Inpatient treatment provides around-the-clock care so individuals will receive proper medical attention which ensures physical psychological and emotional safety throughout his or her time in treatment. It is important to have an environment that is structured and stable while adjusting.

Inpatient is also is known to be effective for individuals that deal with co-occurring disorders. To regain your health and wellness in all aspects of your life, inpatient rehabilitation is strongly encouraged. Inpatient not only provides intensive care and safe housing, but therapeutic approaches. For many people, therapy is an important part of the rehabilitation process. Therapy helps numerous individuals live a long happy and substance free life. If you or loved one is living with an Amphetamine addiction, we encourage you to take the time to consider a short stay-cation in an inpatient treatment center. – Learn More

Outpatient Rehab

A variety of outpatient rehab programs are available, all of which slightly differ from one another. Some  outpatient rehabs exceed the basic counseling aspects while other programs are more intensive. More intensive outpatient programs require daily check-ins, classes, 12-step meetings, support groups alongside intensive therapy sessions. Although outpatient treatment is not known to be as secluded or structured, it does allow for individuals to continue living their daily lives.

Outpatient may work well for individuals who are not able to take off from work, school or other responsibilities. It is also common for those who turn to the outpatient treatment option to live in sober living homes. Sober living comes provided extra structure that is often needed to attain and carry out recovery from Amphetamine addiction. If you cannot find the time to step away for a period for inpatient, due to taking care of your children or a strict work schedule consider getting into an outpatient program.

Outpatient rehab for Amphetamine addiction allows individuals to receive therapeutic and intensive treatment without the residential portion. Outpatient programs do not include the detoxification process necessary to receive actual treatment for Amphetamine addiction. The detox process is crucial to the recovery process. Before your loved one can attend an outpatient rehab program, he or she will need to go through the detoxification stage. Detox is safe and effective if done under medical supervision at a detox facility. If you are considering an outpatient program for your loved one, give us a call. – Learn More