Spend a Few Weeks Living Like a Meth Addict While Watching This Video – Sad but Human

Meth makes people disappear. Loved ones addicted to meth may live in the same town, yet for all the real contact we have with them, they may as well be on the moon. And this can be very tough for anyone who has never been sucked into that life to understand.

This documentary follows a few lives in a small community of meth addicts in Australia. It follows them during week long binges and crashes – in and out of jail, and hospital, and although it’s pretty disturbing at times, it’s not a movie that’s trying to "scare anyone straight". It’s not yet another "faces of meth" variation.

These Australian addicts look and act the same as binging meth addicts anywhere and yet through the erratic behavior and shocking health consequences, the people shine through as people, not just junkies. The film humanizes the people of meth addiction as it reveals a very different, and devastating, lifestyle.

Captivating and educating and sad – and very worth spending a few minutes to watch [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cY_vwZyye2U&hl=en%5DPart 2
Part 3 Part 4Part 5

Meth makes people disappear. Loved ones addicted to meth may live in the same town, yet for all the real contact we have with them, they may as well be on the moon. And this can be very tough for anyone who has never been sucked into that life to understand.

This documentary follows a few lives in a small community of meth addicts in Australia. It follows them during week long binges and crashes – in and out of jail, and hospital, and although it’s pretty disturbing at times, it’s not a movie that’s trying to “scare anyone straight”. It’s not yet another “faces of meth” variation.

These Australian addicts look and act the same as binging meth addicts anywhere and yet through the erratic behavior and shocking health consequences, the people shine through as people, not just junkies. The film humanizes the people of meth addiction as it reveals a very different, and devastating, lifestyle.

Captivating and educating and sad – and very worth spending a few minutes to watch:


Part 1

 


Part 2


Part 3


Part 4


Part 5

Contingency management, a new approach to dealing with crystal meth addiction

Recovery from crystal meth can be daunting. Not only is the drug so addictive, and as a result are the cravings for the drug so intense, the negative psychological effects of crystal meth cessation can last or months or even years. When these two factors are combined, the high recidivism rates of crystal meth addicts in recovery are better understood.

In response to the rising rates of crystal meth addiction in the country, and also in response to the devastation that an addiction to crystal meth can cause, there have been a number of research studies done on what treatment approaches are the most effective for crystal meth rehabilitation. As with any drug, any one treatment won’t work for every user, and as a result the best rehabilitation programs will combine both psycho social counseling with behavioral modification programs.

But a third strategy towards prolonged abstinence, commonly used for cocaine addiction, also seems to be effective.

Contigency Management

This strategy is called contingency management (CM). The carrot and the stick…we all live our lives essentially by the principles of avoiding pain, and seeking reward, and while most drug rehabilitation programs emphasize pain (addiction) avoidance, contingency management provides the carrot to the matrix. What contingency management is, is a system in which recovering addicts are rewarded for periods of abstinence with rewards of increasing values, and the longer the period of abstinence, the bigger the reward.

These rewards are usually non monetary vouchers for things such as movies, gasoline or other entertainment vouchers, and the system has proven reliably effective as a strategy for crystal meth addiction recovery. Clinical studies indicate that the use of contingency management in a recovery program is associated with longer periods of sobriety. Long used for cocaine addiction, contingency management is becoming an increasingly common element of crystal meth recovery.

You can’t have the stick without the carrot, and it makes sense that by making treatment more comprehensive, recovery outlooks would be brighter. Research continues on how best to incorporate contingency management into crystal meth recovery, but it is encouraging that there is at least some good news for the treatment of the ever increasing numbers of people devastated through an addiction to crystal meth.

Recovery from crystal meth can be daunting. Not only is the drug so addictive, and as a result are the cravings for the drug so intense, the negative psychological effects of crystal meth cessation can last or months or even years. When these two factors are combined, the high recidivism rates of crystal meth addicts in recovery are better understood.

In response to the rising rates of crystal meth addiction in the country, and also in response to the devastation that an addiction to crystal meth can cause, there have been a number of research studies done on what treatment approaches are the most effective for crystal meth rehabilitation. As with any drug, any one treatment won’t work for every user, and as a result the best rehabilitation programs will combine both psycho social counseling with behavioral modification programs.

But a third strategy towards prolonged abstinence, commonly used for cocaine addiction, also seems to be effective.

Contigency Management

This strategy is called contingency management (CM). The carrot and the stick…we all live our lives essentially by the principles of avoiding pain, and seeking reward, and while most drug rehabilitation programs emphasize pain (addiction) avoidance, contingency management provides the carrot to the matrix. What contingency management is, is a system in which recovering addicts are rewarded for periods of abstinence with rewards of increasing values, and the longer the period of abstinence, the bigger the reward.

These rewards are usually non monetary vouchers for things such as movies, gasoline or other entertainment vouchers, and the system has proven reliably effective as a strategy for crystal meth addiction recovery. Clinical studies indicate that the use of contingency management in a recovery program is associated with longer periods of sobriety. Long used for cocaine addiction, contingency management is becoming an increasingly common element of crystal meth recovery.

You can’t have the stick without the carrot, and it makes sense that by making treatment more comprehensive, recovery outlooks would be brighter. Research continues on how best to incorporate contingency management into crystal meth recovery, but it is encouraging that there is at least some good news for the treatment of the ever increasing numbers of people devastated through an addiction to crystal meth.

Occasional Crystal Meth Use in Adolescence Can Accelerate the Progression of Parkinson’s Later in Life

Even occasional crystal meth binges during adolescence may accelerate the progression of brain aging diseases decades later in life.

Researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina looked at the long term behavioral deficit effects of binge crystal meth use in an animal study; and they found that a single binge administration of crystal meth in adolescent rats with a predisposition to develop a Parkinson’s like disease led to an accelerated presentation of this disorder a few months later, when the rats were approaching old age.

The rats in the study had a gene sequence altered presentation of the Parkinson’s causing GDNF protein. This protein, which repairs and restores dopaminergic cells in the brain, was less present in the genetically altered rats, as the protein is less present in humans predisposed to the development of Parkinson like neuro muscular conditions. The rats that were given the dose of methamphetamine developed the neuro muscular symptoms of the disease much more severely and at an earlier age than the rats not given the binge administration of crystal meth.

The implications are that teenage occasional binge crystal meth users with an existing predisposition for Parkinson’s like disorders, while not necessarily suffering gross adverse consequences from occasional meth use during their younger years, may be accelerating the progression and intensity of the disease in decades to come. And since meth seems to influence the functioning of the dopaminergic cells in the brain, it may lead to increased presentations of neuromuscular conditions in people not otherwise predisposed to their occurrence.

Scary Stuff

We already know how physical and mentally destructive meth can be, and the ravages of even a few years of meth abuse are tragic to contemplate; but with research now indicating that even occasional meth use may increase neuro degenerative disease for people who do not develop dependencies to the drug, the tragic net of crystal meth seems to be widening. It seems that even users who avoid the incredibly destructive and easy to acquire addiction to meth may pay a severe and long term price for their occasional meth usage.

The study results are a very preliminary exploration of the long term consequences of meth on the development of neuro muscular pathologies, and future research may uncover some methods to protect users from the mental ravages of the drug. For now though, it’s another great reason to avoid even trying meth once. The price of meth on all levels is just too high, and even a single dose may decrease long term health and quality of life.

Even occasional crystal meth binges during adolescence may accelerate the progression of brain aging diseases decades later in life.

Researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina looked at the long term behavioral deficit effects of binge crystal meth use in an animal study; and they found that a single binge administration of crystal meth in adolescent rats with a predisposition to develop a Parkinson’s like disease led to an accelerated presentation of this disorder a few months later, when the rats were approaching old age.

The rats in the study had a gene sequence altered presentation of the Parkinson’s causing GDNF protein. This protein, which repairs and restores dopaminergic cells in the brain, was less present in the genetically altered rats, as the protein is less present in humans predisposed to the development of Parkinson like neuro muscular conditions. The rats that were given the dose of methamphetamine developed the neuro muscular symptoms of the disease much more severely and at an earlier age than the rats not given the binge administration of crystal meth.

The implications are that teenage occasional binge crystal meth users with an existing predisposition for Parkinson’s like disorders, while not necessarily suffering gross adverse consequences from occasional meth use during their younger years, may be accelerating the progression and intensity of the disease in decades to come. And since meth seems to influence the functioning of the dopaminergic cells in the brain, it may lead to increased presentations of neuromuscular conditions in people not otherwise predisposed to their occurrence.

Scary Stuff

We already know how physical and mentally destructive meth can be, and the ravages of even a few years of meth abuse are tragic to contemplate; but with research now indicating that even occasional meth use may increase neuro degenerative disease for people who do not develop dependencies to the drug, the tragic net of crystal meth seems to be widening. It seems that even users who avoid the incredibly destructive and easy to acquire addiction to meth may pay a severe and long term price for their occasional meth usage.

The study results are a very preliminary exploration of the long term consequences of meth on the development of neuro muscular pathologies, and future research may uncover some methods to protect users from the mental ravages of the drug. For now though, it’s another great reason to avoid even trying meth once. The price of meth on all levels is just too high, and even a single dose may decrease long term health and quality of life.

Crystal Meth implicated in increasing HIV infection rates within the gay community

While high we do things that we wouldn’t otherwise do, and with a loss of inhibition and a loss of impulse control, it’s too easy to contract a deadly disease with a moment’s lapse of judgment.

Unfortunately, with the continuing prevalence of recreational meth use within west coast gay communities, and a recent spread of meth within east coast venues, gay community leaders are growing concerned and exasperated. They bemoan that the hard work of a decade of safer sex campaigns is becoming unraveled through the use and abuse of party drugs…and statistics seem to back their anguish.

Viagra and Meth

A major risk factor for the contraction of HIV is the concurrent use of erectile dysfunction medications such as Viagra and meth, and in certain west coast communities, more than a third of newly HIV infected men reveal having used meth within the last 6 months. As if the physical and mental devastation of crystal meth was not enough, while speeding on meth, there is a great loss of inhibitions and a fearless reckless desire to act on impulses. With the internet fueling informally organized home meth and sex parties, the spread of HIV has grown exponentially after years of declines.

In addition to meth fueled risky behaviors, HIV advocates explain that a new generation of gay men, aware of the major breakthroughs in HIV and AIDS treatments, simply do not fear the disease as they should, and do not take the needed steps to protect themselves. Besides the dangers of STD’s including HIV, syphilis and others, increasing numbers of long time weekend meth users are ultimately finding the temptations of meth too great, and within the gay community there has been an endemic increase in meth addiction rates.

While throughout the country the average meth user is predominantly rural and from a lower socio economic class, the average gay meth user is just as likely to be an urban professional.

Meth certainly does not discriminate. Newly launched public awareness campaigns have drawn criticism for their negativity and scare mongering tactics, but proponents defend the severity of the ads explaining that they wanted to provoke a reaction, and that the scope of the problem demanded a forceful response.

Although the debate about appropriate reactions to the meth fueled HIV increases rage primarily within the gay community, the reality of meth and risky behaviors transcends all communities, and any recreational or dependent meth user greatly impairs their judgment and increases the probability of contracting HIV and other sexually transited diseases. Another great reason not to use devastating crystal meth, and to get treatment help before it’s too late if you already do.

While high we do things that we wouldn’t otherwise do, and with a loss of inhibition and a loss of impulse control, it’s too easy to contract a deadly disease with a moment’s lapse of judgment.

Unfortunately, with the continuing prevalence of recreational meth use within west coast gay communities, and a recent spread of meth within east coast venues, gay community leaders are growing concerned and exasperated. They bemoan that the hard work of a decade of safer sex campaigns is becoming unraveled through the use and abuse of party drugs…and statistics seem to back their anguish.

Viagra and Meth

A major risk factor for the contraction of HIV is the concurrent use of erectile dysfunction medications such as Viagra and meth, and in certain west coast communities, more than a third of newly HIV infected men reveal having used meth within the last 6 months. As if the physical and mental devastation of crystal meth was not enough, while speeding on meth, there is a great loss of inhibitions and a fearless reckless desire to act on impulses. With the internet fueling informally organized home meth and sex parties, the spread of HIV has grown exponentially after years of declines.

In addition to meth fueled risky behaviors, HIV advocates explain that a new generation of gay men, aware of the major breakthroughs in HIV and AIDS treatments, simply do not fear the disease as they should, and do not take the needed steps to protect themselves. Besides the dangers of STD’s including HIV, syphilis and others, increasing numbers of long time weekend meth users are ultimately finding the temptations of meth too great, and within the gay community there has been an endemic increase in meth addiction rates.

While throughout the country the average meth user is predominantly rural and from a lower socio economic class, the average gay meth user is just as likely to be an urban professional.

Meth certainly does not discriminate. Newly launched public awareness campaigns have drawn criticism for their negativity and scare mongering tactics, but proponents defend the severity of the ads explaining that they wanted to provoke a reaction, and that the scope of the problem demanded a forceful response.

Although the debate about appropriate reactions to the meth fueled HIV increases rage primarily within the gay community, the reality of meth and risky behaviors transcends all communities, and any recreational or dependent meth user greatly impairs their judgment and increases the probability of contracting HIV and other sexually transited diseases. Another great reason not to use devastating crystal meth, and to get treatment help before it’s too late if you already do.

Researchers conclude that meth addicts need the same type of treatment, but need it for longer

Faced with the rising epidemic of meth usage and addiction, particularly in the Mid West, researchers at the University of Iowa took a look at what exactly was needed for successful meth addiction treatment; and they concluded that standard drug rehab therapies are effective for meth addicts, but that longer programs are especially beneficial when dealing with the devastation of crystal meth addiction.

A single usage of crystal meth can have physical implications for as long as 6 months, and as such it’s not surprising that heavy meth use can devastate, and that the physical and mental repercussions of this abuse can take a long time to heal. Meth is uniquely damaging and uniquely addictive, and is truly one of the saddest stories of modern American drug addiction. The University of Iowa researchers concluded that almost two full weeks of medically supervised detoxification were required before a meth addict was clear headed enough to even begin to benefit from the therapy and education offered at a rehab facility.

A two week rehab does little other than detoxing the meth addict off of the drug, and offers no education or skills for future drug taking avoidance. Using a variety of drug treatments and therapies together was deemed most effective, but meth addicts benefited uniquely from cognitive training and temptations avoidance counseling.

Cognitive and behavioral strategies are emphasized to teach the addict how to minimize the temptation to use. Cognitive therapy requires of addicts to discover the triggers that lead them to abuse, to think about how best to avoid these triggers, and teaches what to do if faced with the temptation to use once out of rehab. The university researchers ended their report with a recommendation for government to move funding away from incarceration for meth possession offenses and towards better funded facilities geared towards meth treatment, and at least partially funding stays appropriate to the severity of the addiction.

Meth justifiably strikes fear into the hearts of parents across the country, and the devastation of meth is such that if anyone you know and love is using meth, the time to get them help is now. The damage of meth abuse can become irreversible, and even a few months of heavy use can devastate for years to come. Meth is so addictive, and the damage to the body, the mind and the spirit is so encompassing, that treatment should never be delayed a day longer than necessary. Rehab for meth addicts needs to be comprehensive, and needs to be long enough for a couple of weeks of detoxification, followed by a period of counseling, sobriety and drug education. Detox alone should not be considered an acceptable goal for meth rehab, and the recidivism rates on detox only treatments are unacceptably high. Meth treatment is tough, but it is possible, and people recover from the devastation of meth abuse everyday.

Happy and sober living begins with a serious rehab stay; and the sooner done the better.

Faced with the rising epidemic of meth usage and addiction, particularly in the Mid West, researchers at the University of Iowa took a look at what exactly was needed for successful meth addiction treatment; and they concluded that standard drug rehab therapies are effective for meth addicts, but that longer programs are especially beneficial when dealing with the devastation of crystal meth addiction.

A single usage of crystal meth can have physical implications for as long as 6 months, and as such it’s not surprising that heavy meth use can devastate, and that the physical and mental repercussions of this abuse can take a long time to heal. Meth is uniquely damaging and uniquely addictive, and is truly one of the saddest stories of modern American drug addiction. The University of Iowa researchers concluded that almost two full weeks of medically supervised detoxification were required before a meth addict was clear headed enough to even begin to benefit from the therapy and education offered at a rehab facility.

A two week rehab does little other than detoxing the meth addict off of the drug, and offers no education or skills for future drug taking avoidance. Using a variety of drug treatments and therapies together was deemed most effective, but meth addicts benefited uniquely from cognitive training and temptations avoidance counseling.

Cognitive and behavioral strategies are emphasized to teach the addict how to minimize the temptation to use. Cognitive therapy requires of addicts to discover the triggers that lead them to abuse, to think about how best to avoid these triggers, and teaches what to do if faced with the temptation to use once out of rehab. The university researchers ended their report with a recommendation for government to move funding away from incarceration for meth possession offenses and towards better funded facilities geared towards meth treatment, and at least partially funding stays appropriate to the severity of the addiction.

Meth justifiably strikes fear into the hearts of parents across the country, and the devastation of meth is such that if anyone you know and love is using meth, the time to get them help is now. The damage of meth abuse can become irreversible, and even a few months of heavy use can devastate for years to come. Meth is so addictive, and the damage to the body, the mind and the spirit is so encompassing, that treatment should never be delayed a day longer than necessary. Rehab for meth addicts needs to be comprehensive, and needs to be long enough for a couple of weeks of detoxification, followed by a period of counseling, sobriety and drug education. Detox alone should not be considered an acceptable goal for meth rehab, and the recidivism rates on detox only treatments are unacceptably high. Meth treatment is tough, but it is possible, and people recover from the devastation of meth abuse everyday.

Happy and sober living begins with a serious rehab stay; and the sooner done the better.