Highest Standards, Nationally Recognized:
Methamphetamine, often called meth or crystal meth, is becoming an epidemic in our society. More therapists and counselors are treating methamphetamine addicts today than ever before. The substance is highly addictive, and can cause a person’s health and well being to decline severely. Physical signs of meth abuse like tooth decay and emaciation have become synonymous with the drug and wider illicit drug abuse in modern media.
People who are addicted to methamphetamine and seek recovery treatment are almost certain to need medically monitored detoxification. Physical withdrawal symptoms from this drug are generally not severe, but the psychological effects can be extremely dangerous. Meth addicts deprived of the drug can be a threat to their own safety as well as the safety of others.
At Avalon Malibu, we can help meth addicts clear this toxic substance from their body while minimizing discomfort and maximizing support. We are also here to help those who are struggling with substance addiction regain their footing in their lives and learn how to live substance-free. We bring both medical and psychological expertise to the table when caring for each client — we work with them to devise an individualized recovery program and ensure that they feel healthy and confident. We provide our signature wide range of therapeutic options in order to provide the most effective treatment for each client.
Methamphetamine is a synthetic stimulant that is produced and distributed illegally in the United States. Meth often appears as a blue-white, white or yellow powder, and can also be distributed in pill form. Crystal meth is a common alternative to powdered meth that appears in glass-like chunks or rocks. The odorless and bitter-tasting powder is often snorted and can be easily dissolved in water or alcohol. When dissolved, it can be injected into the body or sprinkled on tobacco or marijuana and smoked. Methamphetamine vaporizes rapidly, so some people heat the drug and inhale the fumes that are released.
Meth is unfortunately relatively easy to manufacture, often created in illegal “laboratories” by drug distributors and occasionally in makeshift home laboratories using over-the-counter pharmacy ingredients. Its effects are similar to that of addictive prescription amphetamines like Adderall or Ritalin and to more expensive illegal drugs like cocaine. Many people who abuse these drugs turn to meth when they can no longer obtain pharmaceuticals or afford cocaine.
When methamphetamine is taken, it creates a false sense of happiness and energy. It stimulates the user’s nervous system, and the person using the drug will often push their body faster and further than it is meant to go. People who use methamphetamine will often use the drug continuously to stay high for as long as they can, sometimes a few days. This is called “binging”, and can lead users to go for extended lengths of time without rest. They tend to skip meals and avoid food. Afterward, they will often experience a severe crash or physical and mental breakdown after the effects of the drugs are gone.
The user is then driven into a depression, followed by paranoia, belligerence and aggression, which is a phase known as tweaking. This stage of meth use is the most dangerous. This is the point where the addict is using the drug constantly, in an attempt to reproduce the original intense high. When that doesn’t happen, the addict becomes more and more frustrated and uncomfortable. “Tweakers” often turn to alcohol to try to modulate their symptoms, which may increase the likelihood of violent behavior. Finally the user caves in from exhaustion, only to awaken days later to begin the cycle again.
Using meth results in sudden and intense highs with equally sudden and intense lows. Meth users are likely to act erratically and their behavior will be a clear sign that they are abusing illegal substances. If you believe that someone close to you might be abusing meth, you should seek help or encourage them to seek help immediately. Due to the highly addictive nature of the drug and the speed with which a user can build a tolerance, fatal overdoses are all too common and can happen even to those who have not been using meth for very long.
Some short-term side effects of methamphetamine abuse include:
Prolonged use of methamphetamine can cause irreversible physical and mental harm. Some long-term effects of use include increased blood pressure and damaged blood vessels in the brain, which can lead to strokes. Addicts may also suffer permanent brain damage, including memory loss and an increased inability to grasp conceptual thoughts. The liver, heart and lungs can also suffer as a result of meth addiction.
Those who recover from methamphetamine addiction are usually subject to some lingering health concerns, including memory gaps, extreme mood swings and physical ailments. In addition, when meth abusers do begin their recovery, they are often in a state of extreme weight loss and nutritional deficiency. It is important to seek treatment at a center that is equipped to provide healing for all of these concerns in order to ensure a full recovery.
At Avalon Malibu, we focus on rebuilding the body and mind of the meth-addicted individual through nutritional guidance and emotional support. Our addiction treatment center, The Cottage House, is also fully equipped and qualified to treat the co-occurring mental disorders that are associated with long-term meth use. Long term use requires long-term treatment, which we aim to provide through our extensive network of resources.
Common signs and results of long-term methamphetamine use include:
Meth poses a challenge to treatment programs because it is so addictive and so dangerous. An estimated 90 percent of meth clients tend to relapse, and the drug causes brain damage that requires an extended recovery period even after meth use is discontinued.
Avalon Malibu offers a new paradigm in treatment philosophy by integrating recovery and healing. The Avalon Sanctuary Model provides adults an opportunity for reflection through introspection, education and mindfulness practice. We are also committed to progressive rehabilitation for chronic users of methamphetamine, offering monitored detoxification and long-term mental and physical health tools to keep even those most likely to relapse on track to recovery. Our home for addiction recovery, The Cottage House, is a place where detox is just the first step on the long road to change. We provide around-the-clock nursing care and access to licensed physicians and therapists in our pristine, peaceful setting.
After detox, we ensure that our clients have everything they need to successfully move into residential addiction treatment. For those remaining in our program, we offer a seamless transition from detox to onsite therapies at The Cottage House. We also have a network of recommended therapists and sober living resources for those who need to seek treatment on an outpatient basis. Our holistic therapy offerings focus on both physical and mental healing, providing strength, confidence and energy to clients who need to rebuild their lives. Our programs include nutritional counseling, yoga and meditation, individual therapy, group therapy and family support sessions.
Avalon Malibu is also qualified to treat a co-occurring diagnosis of addiction and mental health disorders. This situation, also known as a dual diagnosis, is especially common in methamphetamine users due to the toll that the drug takes on the brain. No matter what concerns you have when you enter our programs, once you are in our care we are committed to helping you heal in any way that you need. Our comfort-focused amenities, top-tier team and dedication to long-term sobriety mean that treatment with us can be your best opportunity to find recovery without relapse.