Drug addiction is running rampant throughout our country, and overdoses have hit a record high. As opioids, such as heroin, fentanyl, and prescription medications have become the main contributor to this rise, much of the attention and resources have been focused in that direction.
While opioid addiction has certainly taken a toll on our society, it is not the only threat among us. Unfortunately, the addiction to other substances has taken a backseat as of late, including alcohol abuse, tobacco use, cocaine addiction, and meth addiction.
Recently, new reports tell us specifically of the rise in meth addiction, along with an increase in seizures along American borders. These reports remind us that our attention should not be focused only on opioids, and that this increase could be the start of another growing trend.
Meth Addiction On The Rise Across America
Drug addiction, no matter the substance, seems to be an issue our country cannot escape. From alcoholism to the crack epidemic of the 80’s, America is certainly no stranger to the scourge of this deadly disease. Meth addiction is no exception. Although methamphetamine abuse is not spoken about as frequently as other addictions, it is clearly an issue that has not gone away.
It certain states, primarily in the West, meth addiction is responsible for more deaths than that of heroin. Additionally, at our borders, agents are seizing 10 to 20 times the amount of meth they did a decade ago. What is causing this increase? While many factors play a part, it is largely due to the steps our government took more than a decade ago to combat meth addiction.
Combat Methamphetamine Act
In 2005, the Combat Methamphetamine Act was passed by Congress. This new legislation required pseudoephedrine to be placed behind the counter of pharmacies. Although technically an over-the-counter drug, customers were now required to show I.D. before purchasing and were limited to 7.5 grams within a 30-day period. Pseudoephedrine is a nasal decongestant commonly found in medicines such as Sudafed, but is also a main ingredient used to make crystal meth.
It seems after this major step, pseudoephedrine sales plummeted and countless meth labs across the country closed up shop. The number of innocents affected by the toxicity of meth labs, such as children and police officers, greatly declined. Nevertheless, even with these accomplishments, meth addiction still rose. What’s worse, there is actually more meth on the streets today, causing more to die.
So, what could be causing this upsurge?
Filling The Void
Where there is a demand, a supplier will always find a way to fill that void. It’s Business 101.
Similar to opioid addiction, Mexican cartels saw a perfect market when pseudoephedrine became difficult to purchase for American suppliers. As our government limits the amount of opioid prescriptions, cartels produce and traffic more heroin and synthetic opioids, like fentanyl, into our country. The same is happening with meth.
Law enforcement officials are telling us that cartels have flooded the black market with a “new meth,” that is nearly 100% pure, and priced at $5 a hit, making it nearly impossible for users to resist.
Steven Bell, spokesman for the DEA tells the NY times, “I have been involved with meth for the last 25 years. A wholesale plummet of price per pound, combined with a huge increase of purity, tells me they have perfected the production or manufacturing of methamphetamine. They have figured out the chemical reactions to get the best bang for their bucks.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 6,000 people died from stimulant use in 2015, a 255% increase from 2005. Additionally, within the past 5 years, meth seizures have tripled along our borders, while the seizures of other drugs have only modest increases, or declined.
As disturbing as these numbers are, what’s more frightening is the fact that they may only get worse before they get better. According to the DEA, Mexican drug cartels are actively pursuing new markets on the East Coast to counteract their low prices.
Struggling With Meth Addiction?
Are you or someone you know struggling with meth addiction? If so, it is important become educated on the dangers of meth addiction, and more importantly, become aware of the treatment available.
Meth addiction can be extremely dangerous to a person’s health & well-being. Using and abusing crystal meth can cause the following:
- Blood vessel damage
- Dental issues
- Organ damage
- Infectious diseases, such as HIV & Hepatitis
- Heart Attack
If you are suspicious of your loved one, and the possibility of a meth addiction, it is imperative to know what to look for. Here are some of the common warning signs of meth addiction:
- Weight Loss
- Decaying teeth; poor dental hygiene
- Dilated pupils
- Obsessive behavior
- Erratic movements
- Erratic sleep patterns
If you or someone you know is currently experiencing any of these symptoms, it is imperative that you receive treatment today. Yes, drug addiction has always been dangerous, but with the purity levels seen in drugs today, there is simply no time to waste. You may tell yourself that you can get treatment tomorrow or next month, but what if you never get that chance? Don’t put it off any longer. Decide to make today the day that you change your life!
Contact Clearbrook Today
If you or someone you know and love is currently struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction, we can help.
Clearbrook Treatment Centers has been providing effective drug and alcohol treatment to the suffering individual for 45 years. We can offer you or your loved one the clinical and therapeutic techniques necessary to recover from a seemingly hopeless disease. We can give you a chance at a completely different life!
If you are interested in getting the help you so deserve, please contact our Admissions Specialists today. We look forward to receiving your call.