Meth is a popular stimulant, especially among young adults. However, it is extremely addictive, often reeling users in after their first use. With drug addiction comes desperation, and even formerly innocuous kids will find themselves doing things they would never have imagined just to get more. At the top of the list is property crimes.
Fifty to seventy percent of all property crimes are committed by meth addicts. This includes burglary, shoplifting, motor vehicle theft, arson and vandalism.
Supply And Demand
While local supply of meth has greatly diminished due to rigorous law enforcement, demand continues to increase. Eighty percent of the country’s meth supply comes from Mexico, where it is imported in beer and wiper fluid and stuffed in among produce.
The meth epidemic is creeping across the nation, starting in the west and reaching tendrils toward the east. It affects urban, suburban and rural communities alike. Though originally produced for its popularity among American motorcycle gangs, it is now fodder for teenagers as it is one of their favorite party drugs.
As of 2009, over 1.2 million Americans over the age of twelve had tried meth at least once. 1.2 percent of eighth-graders, 1.6 percent of tenth-graders and 1 percent of high school seniors had abused meth at least once. Despite increased law enforcement, these numbers continue to increase.
What Is Methamphetamine
Methamphetamine is a stimulant. It increases energy, mental alertness and concentration. Girls are often drawn to it for its ability to cause rapid weight loss. It also increases libido and confidence.
Meth is either smoked, injected, snorted, swallowed, or inserted into the anus or urethra. It causes a surge of dopamine, a pleasure hormone in the brain, giving the user a strong euphoria that can last as long as twelve hours.
Its side effects include diarrhea, nausea, excessive sweating, loss of appetite, sleeping problems, tremors, jaw-clenching, agitation, irritability, panic, violence and confusion. It can lead to break-down of artery walls. It can cause the user to become obsessively fascinated with mundane, repetitive tasks. It also brings about hallucinations, especially a well-known hallucination of insects crawling under the skin, causing the user to cut himself obsessively.
Overdose can cause brain damage, muscle breakdown and death due to stroke, heart attack or elevated body temperature, known as hypothermia.
What follows in the wake of meth use is hard to imagine, but very real. Aside from violent and non-violent crimes associated with money demands to pay for drugs, a number of others are affected by the meth epidemic. A great deal of money is spent on law enforcement to search out and dismantle meth labs.
Children are forced to live in appalling conditions, being victims of abuse and often living with hazardous materials used in the production of meth. Mothers who are meth addicts pass their addiction to their children through the placenta.
The best way to stop meth abuse is to prevent the problem from happening in the first place. Educate your family on the dangers of meth and if someone is using the drug get them help.
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