According to a new DASIS report, the use of meth leads substance abuse treatment admissions for the year 2005. The percentage of primary treatment admissions has more than doubled since 1995. Statistics compiled on the substance abuse admissions show that frequent meth abuse causes serious health consequences. The highly addictive drug, which affects the central nervous system with over-stimulation, has been linked to rapid or irregular heartbeat, extreme dental problems, mood swings and disturbances, impaired memory, Various psychiatric problems and more recently to diabetic complications and other organ function problems.
The report compares treatment admissions where meth is the primary drug, to other drug treatment admissions.
In 2005, there were 169,500 treatment admissions where meth was the primary drug. That equals 9 percent of all drug admissions. The admissions were mostly female and the criminal justice system was the principal source of referral.
To download the entire free report, go to: www.samhsa.gov. and click on Primary Methamphetamine/Amphetamine Admissions to Substance Abuse Treatment: 2005.
It's "Shake and Bake" all over again
Methods of making and consuming meth continue to evolve. Anyone over the age of 40 remembers those "Shake and Bake ...and I helped" commercials that appeared in the 60s and 70s. Well, in Morgan County, Ala., law enforcement officers recently busted four abusers using this method to produce meth.
The standard meth ingredients are placed into a two-liter soda bottle, which is turned upside-down and shaken. This starts a chemical reaction that can cause the bottle to explode if it not handled carefully. The drug is apparently more concentrated in this form because it allows the user to stay ‘high' for 8, 10 or even 24 hours at a time; whereas the usual method of consumption allows for a ‘high' of an hour or maybe two at the most.
In the recent (March 3, 2008) Morgan County bust, drug agents found this form of meth in the vehicle. "If the subjects are driving high on meth and have an accident and no one releases the pressure off the bottle, you've got a time bomb just waiting to explode."
Should a passerby come upon this type of scene, "DON'T MOVE THE BOTTLE". Call the police to come handle the situation. This is dangerous stuff.
The above story appeared on WSFA Channel 12 News, an NBC affiliate out of Montgomery.
All Phoenix TV stations (and others across the state) will simulcast the program "Crystal Darkness" at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday April 15. This is a documentary about the devastating effects of meth as told by former addicts and their families and friends. The program lasts for a half hour.
For questions or more information on the Gila County Meth Coalition contact Chair Claudia DalMolin at the Gila County Sheriff's Office (928) 425-4440, Co-Chair Bianca DalMolin at (928) 701-1790, Facilitator Peggy Huggins at (928) 425-1887 or Media Liaison Lu DuBois at (928) 467-2515.