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National Methamphetamine Day Highlights Dangers and Raises Awareness

Image courtesy of Plano PD

In 2006, President George W. Bush initiated National Methamphetamine Day to educate the public about the effects and risks associated with methamphetamine use. Methamphetamine belongs to a group of drugs known as Central Nervous System stimulants, which stimulate the brain, resulting in increased alertness, wakefulness, and energy but suppressing appetite. These drugs can also lead to physical side effects like a rapid or irregular heartbeat, elevated blood pressure, and increased body temperature.

To shed light on the dangers of meth use, here are some eye-opening statistics and long-term effects:

Eye-Opening Statistics:

  • According to the 2021 National Survey on Drug Use & Health, 0.9% of people aged 12 or older, approximately 2.5 million individuals, reported using methamphetamine in the past 12 months.
  • In 2021, around 32,537 people succumbed to overdose involving psychostimulants with abuse potential other than cocaine, primarily methamphetamine.
  • In 2022, an estimated 0.2% of 8th graders, 0.3% of 10th graders, and 0.5% of 12th graders reported using methamphetamine in the past 12 months.

Long-Term Effects & Risks of Meth Use:

  • Cumulative brain changes leading to confusion, memory loss, and impaired verbal learning.
  • Reduced coordination.
  • Insomnia.
  • Changes in mood, violent behavior, chronic anxiety, and paranoia.
  • Hallucinations.
  • Extreme weight loss.
  • Severe heart problems.
  • Skin abscesses and damaged blood vessels resulting from injection use.
  • Severe dental problems such as gum disease and tooth decay.

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