Posted on November 16, 2017 in Drug Abuse

Physical Effects of Long Term Meth Abuse

Before and after images of people who have abused meth aren’t pretty. In fact, they are downright shocking and grizzly. If you’re wondering, “What does meth do to your face?” the short answer is: Meth makes it unrecognizable.

Let’s take a closer look at the physical effects of long term meth abuse and what meth does to your face in particular.

Leads to Weight Loss

Meth drastically reduces your appetite and increases your energy levels, causing rapid weight-loss and a gaunt appearance similar to those who suffer from anorexia.

Causes Hallucinations of Bugs Crawling on Skin

Sores, acne and general inflammation on the face are common among meth users, but these symptoms are worsened by compulsive skin picking. The root of the problem is a tactile hallucination of bugs crawling on the skin. Meth users compulsively itch, scratch or pick at their skin in response to this imagined sensation.

Erodes Tissues in the Mouth

In terms of what meth does to your face, “meth mouth” is perhaps the most famous. Meth is composed of harsh chemicals that quickly erode the protective enamel off your teeth, causing them to rot and fall out. Meth also damages the soft tissues of the mouth, including the gums.

Lowers Immune System Function

Meth interferes with the body’s natural ability to fight off infections and diseases. Meth users are more likely to become sick. The sores that appear as a result of compulsive skin picking are unlikely to heal, not only because meth users frequently reopen them, but also because the body’s immune system is compromised.

Permanently Removes the Ability to Feel Pleasure

Dopamine is the natural chemical primarily involved in our feelings of pleasure, joy and happiness. Meth floods the brain with dopamine, producing a euphoria or high. However, with long-term meth use, the brain’s dopamine receptors become permanently damaged, making it impossible to feel any happiness at all. That, perhaps, is the worst effect of all.

Meth is highly addictive and severely damaging to a user’s body, brain, relationships and life. If you or someone you know struggles with meth abuse, get help immediately. Don’t become the next “face of meth.”

Sources

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/methamphetamine

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