Understanding Amphetamine Addiction – Effects, Symptoms & Treatment
Amphetamines are stimulant drugs, which cause the user to feel alert, awake and euphoric. Sometimes they are prescribed to people who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). When the substance is used correctly and as prescribed, it can be safe. However, it can also be misused. If you misuse amphetamines, you could develop an amphetamine addiction.
Frequently, amphetamines and other stimulants are abused by high school or college students. There is a misconception that they will make you smarter and give you better grades. However, this is just a misconception due to two of the biggest side effects of amphetamine in patients who do not have ADHD: decreased appetite and alertness. Without needing to sleep or eat, students can stay up all night and cram for tests.
Amphetamines that are available in the United States include:
The History of Amphetamine Addiction
L. Edelano was a German chemist who first synthesized the substance in 1887. This is when widespread amphetamine use began. Gordon Alles was an American biochemist who discovered the effects of the drug that made it a stimulant in the 1930s. Because of this, he created a decongestant inhaler called Benzedrine.
Both the Axis and the Allies in World War II would use amphetamines so that troops could stay alert and awake. It was then marketed as a diet pill for housewives in the 1950s. Amphetamine abuse increased in the 1960s with an increase in overall drug abuse. The prescription drug, Adderall, was released in 1996 as a medication to treat ADHD.
The Effects of Amphetamine on the Body
Unfortunately, amphetamine can be a very addictive drug. Additionally, there are a number of side effects that it can cause including:
- Shortness of breath
- Excessive fatigue
- Dry mouth
- Stomach upset
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Decreased appetite
- Excessive fatigue
- Difficulty sleeping
- Digestive issues
Amphetamine Addiction Signs
If you think you may have an issue with amphetamine addiction or if you think that a loved one has an amphetamine addiction, you may want to be aware of the signs and symptoms of amphetamine addiction. Amphetamine addiction can include signs and symptoms like:
- The necessity for larger amounts of the drug for it to be as effective
- Social isolation from friends and family
- The inability to function in daily life without the substance
- Difficulty controlling the amount of the substance that is used
- Continuing to take the substance despite any dangers
Amphetamine Withdrawal Symptoms
When you make the decision to stop Amphetamine, you may experience Amphetamine withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms may be physical or psychological. Physical withdrawal symptoms may include:
- Panic attacks
- Lack of mental clarity
- Suicidal thoughts
The physical amphetamine withdrawal symptoms include:
- Abdominal Pain
- Upset stomach
- Extreme hunger
- Urinary tract infections
- Increased heart rate
- Increased appetite
Co-Occurring Mental Health Disorders
Sometimes an amphetamine addiction is present with a co-occurring mental health disorder. This is when the patient has a mental health disorder in addition to drug addiction. Patients with eating disorders often present with amphetamine addictions as the drug can cause weight loss. When there is a duel diagnosis, it’s essential that you are able to find treatment for both conditions.
Amphetamine Addiction Treatment
Amphetamine addiction isn’t just a bad habit or a destructive behavior. Like any other drug addiction, amphetamine addiction is a disease. Those who are suffering from amphetamine addiction need to be treated.
When you are considering amphetamine treatment, you’ll want to think about all of your available options. Among the services offered at The Recovery Village Ridgefield are detox, outpatient programs, inpatient programs and aftercare programs.
An excellent choice for amphetamine treatment, The Recovery Village Ridgefield is located a convenient distance from Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon. Call today to speak to one of our addiction specialists, and begin your path to recovery.