Amphetamines are stimulant drugs often prescribed to treat narcolepsy and some forms of depression. The following drugs fall into the category of amphetamines:
Slang terms for amphetamines may include:
- Blue boys
- Jolly beans
Effects of Amphetamine Use
As the slang terms imply, amphetamines are used to produce increased wakefulness, energy, focus, and motivation. Athletes may take amphetamines to enhance performance, and students often use them to study for extended periods of time. Amphetamines are also used recreationally for their euphoric effects, which are produced when the drugs increase levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain.
Amphetamine abusers develop tolerance for the drug rapidly, and the amount which must be taken to achieve former effects must be regularly increased. Amphetamine users commonly to take other drugs, such as benzodiazepines or barbiturates, to mitigate the effects of amphetamine withdrawal.
Co-Occurring Amphetamine Abuse and Mental Health Disorders
Co-occurring mental health and substance abuse conditions are very common. Sixty percent of people who enter substance abuse treatment programs have co-occurring depression and forty percent have co-occurring anxiety. The original approach to co-occurring disorders believed that if a person with a substance abuse disorder such as amphetamine addiction was treated for that problem, that any co-occurring mental health disorders would automatically resolve. Conversely, it was also believed that if a person was treated for a mental health disorder, any associated substance abuse issues would no longer need to be addressed. The erroneous nature of these approaches is exemplified by Josh Koerner, Executive Director of CHOICES (Consumers Helping Others in a Caring Environment) who suffered from both mental health and substance use disorders. He reports that despite the fact that he smuggled drugs into a locked psychiatric unit the first time he was confined, he didn’t get treatment for his substance abuse problem until 11 years later.
The new standard of care for co-occurring mental health and substance abuse conditions (sometimes known as dual diagnosis) is to employ integrated treatment. Research shows that clients do better when both conditions are treated simultaneously, preferably with the same agency providing both services.
A quality amphetamine integrated treatment program will begin with assessment and diagnosis. Proper treatment may hinge on separating effects of amphetamines or their withdrawal symptoms from a separate mental health condition. Trained practitioners can also determine which drugs that could potentially treat a mental health condition would not be good for a patient with amphetamine abuse issues.
Finding Integrated Treatment for Co-occurring Amphetamine Addiction and Mental Health Conditions
Both mental health and amphetamine abuse disorders can be treated, and when they occur together, they should be treated together. Our toll free number is available 24 hours a day to provide information about integrated treatment for amphetamine addiction and mental health condition. We can help put you on the path to recovery.