Amphetamines are a class of drugs that have become increasingly problematic in the United States in terms of abuse and addiction.
Amphetamines are stimulants, and commonly prescribed drugs like Adderall are included in this classification. Amphetamines that are available by prescription are typically used to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity (ADHD). Less commonly an amphetamine may be prescribed to treat conditions such as narcolepsy.
Some amphetamines aren’t available by prescription, and are only available illegally. Methamphetamine is one example of an illegal drug that falls into this category. Methamphetamine is also known as meth or crystal meth.
Whether prescription or illegal, this class of drugs has stimulant effects. Amphetamines work on the central nervous system and increase the functionality and speed-up certain activities.
Amphetamines, and in particular prescription drugs, are often abused among young people and college students. These drugs can provide a euphoric rush, can help users stay awake for long periods, and can increase energy levels. Some users feel they help give them a cognitive boost, so they’re often known as study drugs.
There are different ways someone might abuse amphetamines. One way might be obtaining a prescription drug from a friend or someone they know. Anytime a prescription drug is used without a prescription, it’s known as abuse.
Someone with an amphetamine prescription might recreationally abuse the drug by dissolving the tablet or capsule fillings and injecting it or snorting the pills to get a high that’s stronger and occurs more quickly.
Some of the signs someone is abusing amphetamine can include:
- Insomnia or changes in sleep patterns
- Weight loss and loss of appetite
- Increased heart rate
- Increased blood pressure
- Changes in mood
- Irritation or aggression
- Digestive problems
Symptoms of Amphetamine Addiction
Over time with repeated exposure to amphetamines of any kind, addiction is possible.
Whenever someone uses a substance that creates a high, it can lead to addiction. Addiction is defined as the compulsive, out-of-control use of a substance. If someone is addicted to a powerful amphetamine drug, they may require professional treatment.
Signs someone may require amphetamine addiction treatment can include:
- Continuing to use amphetamine even when it leads to negative side effects or consequences
- Amphetamine use is a top priority above everything else in a person’s life
- A person may feel like they want to stop using amphetamine, but they aren’t able to
- Damaged relationships because of amphetamine use
- Amphetamine dependence has formed meaning withdrawal symptoms will occur if the person tries to stop using the drug suddenly or even cut down on their dosage
Effective Amphetamine Treatment
There are certain principles of effective addiction treatment that are defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Some of the principles of effective treatment for amphetamine addiction can include:
- Addiction is complex, but it’s also treatable—addiction affects brain function and behavior and these considerations need to be taken into account in a treatment program
- There’s not one addiction treatment plan or program that’s going to work for everyone—addiction treatment needs to be very individualized
- Treatment needs to be readily available according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse
- Effective amphetamine addiction treatment needs to focus on the whole person and not just their drug use
- It’s important that a person stays in amphetamine treatment for a long enough period of time—the longer someone remains in treatment, generally the better the outcomes
- Behavioral therapy is often a core component of addiction treatment, and in some cases, medications may also be combined with counseling
- Dual diagnosis treatment is often required because people with substance use disorders can also have co-occurring mental health disorders
Amphetamine Inpatient Rehab
When someone is addicted to amphetamine, they have different styles of rehab programs available to choose from.
Inpatient amphetamine rehab is often the first step for many people.
During inpatient amphetamine addiction treatment, the patient checks into the treatment facility and they stay there for a certain period. This is usually around 30 days, although every treatment plan is unique so it can be shorter or longer than this.
During inpatient rehab, the person does leave their home, but they receive around-the-clock care, support, and monitoring. The environment is extremely structured and scheduled.
Cognitive behavioral therapy and other types of behavioral therapy in both individual and group settings may occur throughout the day.
Outpatient Amphetamine Rehab
Another treatment option is outpatient amphetamine rehab. Some participants may start their treatment journey in an outpatient program. This may be okay for someone who has a mild or short-term amphetamine addiction. Other people may begin in a higher level of care, such as inpatient rehab and when they’re ready gradually move into outpatient treatment.
Outpatient amphetamine rehab can vary in intensity and the required weekly time commitment.
Typically, outpatient rehab may last for several months, and a participant might go to treatment once a week or several times a week. Outpatient rehab can also include medication management if necessary, and program options like family counseling.
Amphetamine PHP Rehabs
Another treatment option for someone struggling with addiction is called a partial hospitalization program or a PHP.
An amphetamine PHP has a lot in common with inpatient rehab, with the exception of the fact that participants can return home in the evening if they’re in a PHP. Some participants might also go to a sober living house.
Other than that, a PHP is very structured and provides intensive treatment and dual diagnosis care as well.
Taking the time to choose the right amphetamine treatment program is important. If a person is comfortable in treatment, they’re more likely to be motivated to stay for the duration of their program.
If possible, it can be helpful to visit an amphetamine treatment center before enrolling to see what your comfort level is there and if it’s a place you could see yourself feeling comfortable.
To learn more about amphetamine treatment options including inpatient and outpatient rehab, contact Amethyst Recovery Center.