Meth addiction is a serious problem in the United States. According to the 2020 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, around 2.6 million people in the United States reported using the drug in 2020.
If you are worried that your loved one may be addicted to meth, there are some symptoms you can look for. You may not know how to identify if someone you love is addicted to meth, or what the signs are.
In this blog post, we will list some of the most common symptoms of meth addiction so that you can better identify them. Keep in mind that every person is different, and not everyone will exhibit all of these signs. Hopefully, you can better understand and help your loved one get the treatment they need.
1) Your loved one’s physical appearance is showing drastic changes.
A person with a meth abuse problem will often exhibit physical symptoms. They may have sores on their skin, or they may have injuries that are not consistent with the behavior you have seen them engage in. You might notice that they are often pale and gaunt looking, which is a result of malnutrition. Long-term meth users can also experience dramatic weight loss as a side effect of using.
Some of the common physical changes include the following:
- meth mouth – inflamed gums and rotting teeth
- scratches on the skin
- facial acne, sores, and drooping facial skin
- track marks
- noticeable weight loss / looking frail
- thinning or falling hair
- red, swollen eyes
- burn marks on the fingers or lips
- A droopy quality to the facial skin
2) Your loved one is showing abnormal psychological and mood changes.
Abusing drugs will often result in psychological side effects and using meth is no exception. If you notice your loved one showing signs of depression, anxiety, or paranoia that is more severe than you have seen before, then it may be a red flag.
Additionally, they may become very hostile or emotional without normal provocation. They may be triggered by very small issues and they may blame others for things that are not their fault. These signs are often a result of the paranoia that can happen with meth addiction.
Some of the common psychological symptoms you can look for include:
- extreme mood swings
- violent outbursts
- memory problems
3) Your loved one’s behavior is becoming more erratic.
If your loved one is behaving in a way that is not normal for them, it might be time to take notice. Meth users often become more impulsive and may show poor judgment or an inability to control their behavior.
You may start noticing that they are not fulfilling their normal responsibilities and they may be neglecting their other obligations. They might neglect certain tasks at home, school, work, social circles, and more.
- aggressive behavior
- anger or rage problems
- lack of motivation to do anything
- neglecting food
- neglecting sleep
- lying, stealing, or hiding
- taking risks that are dangerous
4) Your loved one is spending a lot of time alone.
Another sign that your loved one may have a meth addiction is that they spend a great deal of time alone, or just with a small circle of friends. Long-term abusers often become socially withdrawn. It can be hard for them to maintain long-term friendships because of their drug problem, especially if they are spending most of their time high.
They may also lose interest in pursuing new friendships or finding love interests. They might withdraw from family members and do not want to participate in social gatherings with the people around them anymore.
5) Your loved one has meth paraphernalia.
An obvious sign that your loved one has an addiction is that they have meth paraphernalia. These things can be hidden in their house, room, or car. Many users become careless over time and start leaving these things in plain sight, not caring anymore if you or other people see these things.
Some of the common meth paraphernalia include:
- glass pipes
- rolled up bills/money
- straws or empty ink pens
- aluminum foil
- little plastic bags
What to Do if Your Loved One Has a Meth Abuse Problem?
Learning that your loved one is struggling with meth abuse can be a very difficult and frustrating experience. You likely want to help them in any way that you can, but you may not be sure what to do first.
The first time you get confirmation that your loved one is abusing meth, you may be tempted to confront them, yell at them, and demand that they stop. However, it’s important to understand that this is not always the best option.
If you want help for your loved one, it’s important to approach them in a calm and understanding manner. This will make it more likely that they will listen to what you have to say, rather than feel like they are being attacked.
If you’re having trouble knowing how to approach your loved one, a good option is to seek professional advice. Consulting with an expert addiction treatment professional can help you to get an idea of the best options and help you determine what would work best for your specific situation.
If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, help is available.
Contact Lighthouse Treatment Center today.