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Methamphetamine, also known as “speed,” “crank,” “crystal,” or “ice” is a powerful central nervous system stimulant. It can be snorted, smoked, injected or ingested by mouth. The color and texture of meth can vary; most commonly it is usually white or slightly yellow in a crystal-like powder or rock-like chunks.

WHAT ARE ITS EFFECTS?

Methamphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant. Use results in increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, elevated temperature and wakefulness. These effects can last 8 – 24 hours.

WHERE DOES IT COME FROM?

Until recent years, methamphetamine was usually produced in small to medium quantities in local clandestine laboratories. These "labs" were found in homes, garages, storage units, apartments, and motel rooms. Thanks to the efforts of law enforcement, along with new policy that restricts ingredients, San Diego County today has very few meth labs. However, now most of the local available methamphetamine is linked to the sophisticated drug manufacturing and distribution operations of international drug cartels. Recent seizures indicate the drug is being made outside of San Diego County, often in Mexico or in remote rural locations.

WHY IS IT ADDICTIVE?

Meth has been called a “double whammy” drug. When using methamphetamine, the user feels energetic and powerful, but a “crash” inevitably follows the “high”. In order to avoid or counteract the crash, the user takes more meth. Tolerance develops rapidly, often leading to addiction in a relatively short time.

WHO USES IT?

Meth is used in a variety of age groups, lifestyles and neighborhoods. Meth’s reputation for increasing energy, alertness and sexuality is a magnet for many types of people, including curious teens, college students, truck drivers and shift workers, and older adults. Girls and women are drawn to meth for these features and as a weight loss tool.

ESCONDIDO METH USER

“I look back at pictures now and see that I was covered with pimples. “Speed bumps” my friends called them. My skin was gray. I looked haggard. My hair was really thin. I hadn’t slept in a really, really long time, maybe a week so I had big, black bags underneath my eyes. Crystal can do a lot of damage in seven months.”
19-years old


 


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