Why You Should Still Care About Meth

Lately we have been hearing a lot about the opioid epidemic in the United States and how serious it is, but what’s going on with other substances?  Although a big focus has been placed on the many harmful consequences of opioid addiction, it is important that we don’t forget about how important it is to prevent the use of other illicit drugs as well, like methamphetamine. 

What exactly is methamphetamine?  Methamphetamine is a stimulant narcotic that can be found in a few different forms.  It can be found as a bitter white powder, as a pill, or as a crystal that looks like a small shard of glass or a shiny blueish rock. 

Meth is still a highly used substance and has a variety of negative consequences on the user including, high risk of addiction, extreme weight loss, skin sores from scratching, violent behavior, paranoia, and hallucinations.  The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that continued use of meth can lead to reduced coordination and impaired verbal learning.  In the most recently published National Survey on Drug Use and Health in 2016, 667,000 people aged 12 and older reported being current meth users.  Of those that reported using, 9,000 of them were between the ages of 12 and 17.  It is important that we recognize the danger that methamphetamines pose to the youth in our communities.

As a parent or trusted adult, remember to have open and honest conversations about drug use and their consequences with your children or teens.  Be vigilant to any changes in behavior and continue to educate yourself on all types of drugs and the risks associated with them.  Please go to DrugFreeAZKids.org or the National Institute on Drug Abuse if you would like more information.