Methamphetamine Category: Stimulants
Also called: crystal meth, ice, glass, tina, christal, cristy, yaba, chalk, crank, zip, meth.
How it’s used
Methamphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant (‘upper’), similar to speed. It is white, odourless and bitter tasting and comes as rocks, crystals or tablets, which you can dissolve in water or alcohol. You can smoke, inject, snort or swallow it.
- Effects can last from 4 to 12 hours, depending on how you take it
- You may have an intense rush
- Even small amounts make you feel euphoric, aroused, awake, more active
- Loss of appetite and rapid breathing
- You may have nausea, panic attacks, compulsive repetitive behaviour and jaw clenching
- Tooth decay or ‘meth mouth’
- Can cause paranoia, hallucinations and psychosis – when you lose contact with reality
- You can become violent and aggressive
- Overdose can cause lung, kidney and stomach disorders, stroke, coma and death
- You risk HIV and hepatitis if you share needles
- Increased sex drive can lead to unsafe sex, with the risk of unplanned pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV
- Damage to nerve tissue (neurotoxicity) leading to concentration and memory problems
If you are pregnant
Do not use if you are pregnant as we don’t know enough about the risks to your baby.
You can become psychologically and physically addicted, so your body craves it and you feel you can’t cope without it. You can build tolerance so you need to take more to get the same buzz.
Withdrawals include depression, anxiety and craving for the drug.
How long does it stay in your system?
Meth will show up in a urine test for 2-3 days. (The length of time depends on the test used, the amount you take, if you have other medical conditions and your own metabolism. Please use this figure as a guide only)
What help is available?
- Self-help support such as Narcotics Anonymous
- Complementary therapies, such as acupuncture
- Support from your doctor
- Residential treatment programmes (clinics)
- One to one or group family support
- Contact the Drugs Helpline 1800 459 459 to find out about options in your area