Amphetamines are prescription drugs typically prescribed for people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). They stimulate the brain to send messages faster and they create the following results:
- Increased concentration
- Impulse control
- Decision-making ability
Amphetamines also increase energy and decrease appetite. Commonly prescribed amphetamines include the following examples:
Amphetamines are highly addictive. When crushed and snorted they mimic the effects of cocaine. This makes them a popular drug of choice at clubs, raves and hip hop concerts, where they are frequently referred to as “uppers.”
Recreational abuse of amphetamines typically follows a “binge and crash” cycle, in which the euphoria created by the drug disappears before the substance leaves an individual’s system. To maintain the high, users often ingest more amphetamines, which can build tolerance and dependence. Symptoms of amphetamine addiction include the following problems:
- Enlarged pupils
- High blood pressure
- Methamphetamine (meth) is a different stimulant that is derived from amphetamine. At comparable doses, greater amounts of methamphetamine enter the brain. This makes it much more potent and addictive, and creates longer lasting and more damaging injuries.
Addiction to both amphetamines and meth is dangerous and requires immediate treatment. Getting help for substance abuse during the early stages—before strong physical and psychological addictions develop—maximizes chances for recovery.
Amphetamines in Australia
Australia has the highest rates of amphetamine abuse in the world. A 2004 survey found that 9% of Australians aged 14 and older reported recreational use of the drug. Research also shows an increase in the use of methamphetamine and links it to a heroin shortage that occurred in Australia in 2001. Other key statistics include the following:
- The number of illegal laboratories producing methamphetamine has risen 245% since 2010
- 90% of meth labs are located in residential communities
- Amphetamines are the most commonly used illicit drugs after marijuana
- 395,000 Australians report using meth
- 73,000 Australians report addiction to meth
- 21% of police detainees who underwent voluntary testing tested in 2011 tested positive for meth
- Meth is the drug of choice for 53% of people who inject drugs
- Self-reported psychosis among meth users more than doubled between 2010 and 2011
- Production and purity of meth is increasing
Abuse of amphetamines can cause long-term brain damage. A representative sample of Australians who used revealed the following mental health problems:
- 13% screened positive for psychosis
- 23% experienced clinically significant levels of suspicion, unusual thoughts and hallucinations
- Dependent meth users were three times more likely to experience psychotic symptoms than non-dependent counterparts
- Prevalence of psychosis was 11 times higher among users than among the general population
Individuals who receive multileveled treatment and stay involved with recovery report lower rates of relapse.
Amphetamine Addiction Recovery
If you or someone you love struggles with amphetamine abuse, you are not alone. Recovery counselors at our toll-free, 24 hour support line can guide you to wellness. You never have to go back to a life of addiction, so call now and start your recovery today.