Amphetamine use in Nevada is becoming an increasing problem. In fact, Nevada has the nation’s highest amphetamine death rate.
As the Las Vegas Review-Journal recently reported, “The death rate in Nevada attributed to “psychostimulants” — a class of drugs that includes methamphetamine, ecstasy and ADHD prescription drugs like Adderall and Ritalin — hit 7.5 per 100,00 in 2016, up nearly 32 percent from 2015.”
One reason that death rates from amphetamines are so high is that there are no overdose antidotes for amphetamines, whereas there are overdose antidotes for other drugs like opioids. Due to the relatively low price and ease of access to illegal amphetamines, usage rates are also increasing.
What Are Amphetamines and How Do They Affect People?
Amphetamines are considered stimulant drugs, which means that they speed up the messages traveling between the brain and the body. There are prescription amphetamines, as mentioned above, which help with disorders such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. There are also illegal forms of amphetamines such as variations of methamphetamine, commonly referred to as “meth.”
As will all drugs, amphetamines affect everyone differently based on a number of variables. Positive effects of amphetamine use include feelings of happiness, increased energy, reduced appetite, and increased sex drive. Negative effects include feeling itchy, dry mouth, rapid heart beat and breathing, teeth grinding, and sweating.
Given the immediate positive effects of amphetamines, it is easy to see why some people find the short-term benefits outweigh the costs — at least initially. However, the long-term effects of amphetamine use are more concerning. For example, amphetamines may eventually cause:
- extreme weight loss,
- restless sleep,
- dental problems,
- decreased immune system,
- trouble concentrating,
- difficulty breathing,
- muscle stiffness,
- heart and kidney problems,
- increased risk of stroke,
- substance dependency/addiction,
- financial, work, and social problems,
People initially begin using legal and illegal amphetamines for many different reasons: an ADHD diagnosis, to treat symptoms of depression, or because they wanted to try a new “fun” drug at a party.
It is difficult to pinpoint a single reason why these drugs are appealing. Regardless, when and if the negative effects of amphetamines start to outweigh the benefits, it is important to know what will help. Amphetamine withdrawals can be difficult due to the cravings, confusion, irritability, aches and pains, exhaustion, difficulty sleeping, anxiety and/or depression that often result.
Detox centers can be very helpful in easing some of the pain and other symptoms that come with withdrawal. Combinations of support groups, family support, and treatment centers can be very effective in working through the recovery process.
Amphetamine Use In Nevada: Do You or a Family Member Need Help?
Given the prevalence, dangers, and increasing rate of amphetamine use in Nevada, it’s important that the general public is made aware of the signs of dependency and know that quality help is available.
If you or a loved one needs help due to an unhealthy dependency on amphetamines, please ask for help before the negative effects of these substances put you and your family in harm’s way. Healthy Minds’ team of caring experts is here to help you, so please contact us today.