What is National Methamphetamine Awareness Day?
President George W. Bush signed a proclamation back in 2006 to establish November 30 as National Methamphetamine Awareness Day.
This year, we celebrate the 11th consecutive year of observing National Methamphetamine Awareness Day, which is designed to achieve three specific goals, according to the National Association of Attorneys General.1 These goals are:
- Educating addicts and family members about methamphetamine addiction treatment programs
- Educating the public about the dangers of methamphetamine abuse
- Reaching potential meth users with a message of prevention
Many people participate in National Methamphetamine Awareness Day by attending or organizing educational events or by posting on social media with the hashtag #methawarenessday.
The Current Scope of Methamphetamine Addiction In Texas and the U.S.
According to a recent Houston Matters interview with a top research professor at the University of Texas, methamphetamine is one of the most dangerous addictive substances in the state of Texas.2
In Harris County alone, 25 percent of all drug arrests involved methamphetamine. To make matters worse, much of the meth in Texas comes from Mexico and is much more potent and has stronger effects than other varieties found across the nation.
While methamphetamine abuse continues to be a major problem in the Houston area and the state of Texas, it is also a large concern in America as a whole. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a staggering 1.4 million Americans (0.5 percent of the population) reported using methamphetamine in 2016.3
Effects of Methamphetamine Abuse
Methamphetamine is an extremely powerful stimulant drug that, when abused, can easily cause an overdose or even death.4 Immediate short-term effects of methamphetamine abuse include:
- Increased physical activity
- Increased wakefulness
- Decreased appetite
- Rapid or irregular heart rate
- Increased blood pressure
- Increased body temperature
When abused over a long period of time, methamphetamine addicts may also suffer from a variety of negative effects, including addiction.5 These effects most often include:
- Memory loss
- Decreased cognitive abilities and motor skills
- Weight loss
- Dental problems
- Aggressive behavior
Methamphetamine addiction and abuse should always be taken very seriously as the consequences are life changing and potentially deadly. Although each situation and person is different, a medically assisted drug detox program at a trusted detox center is typically the best way to address methamphetamine addiction.
Recognizing a Loved One’s Methamphetamine Addiction
One great way you can participate in National Methamphetamine Awareness Day is by learning how to recognize signs of methamphetamine addiction. This is especially useful if you or your loved ones are at increased risk of developing a drug addiction.
Drug abuse is often characterized by several distinct warning signs and symptoms of addiction.6 If you think your loved one may be abusing methamphetamine, look for the following signs:
- Strange behaviors that are uncharacteristic, such as being more talkative, aggressive, or violent
- Extreme changes in sleeping and eating habits
- Sudden weight loss
- Trouble at school and/or work
- Missing money or valuables
- New group of friends
- Lack of interest in hobbies and activities they used to enjoy
It’s not always easy to determine when a loved one is addicted to methamphetamine or abusing other drugs, but if you think a loved one is addicted, you may want to confront them about the situation and provide suggestions or help to find treatment.
Treatment for methamphetamine addiction should begin with a medically assisted drug detox program and continue with long-term drug and alcohol rehab. A high-quality drug and alcohol detox center such as Hill Country Detox will provide an individualized drug detox program along with appropriate recommendations for ongoing treatment based on the individual’s circumstances.
If you or your loved one is suffering from methamphetamine addiction, there is no reason to put it off any longer. Call Hill Country Detox to learn more about our drug detox programs or to enroll today.