Volume 96, Issue 60
Thursday, January 16, 2003

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CRYSTAL METH

What is it?

Crystal meth is part of the amphetamine family and was developed by a Japanese chemist in 1919. Today, it is legally used in the treatment of attention deficit disorder and obesity, but it is prescribed with great caution.

Crystal meth is created through different mixtures of highly volatile, toxic substances.

How do you use it?

Smoking crystal meth delivers an almost instantaneous dose of pure drugs to the brain, providing an immediate rush, followed by a feeling of euphoria that can last anywhere from two to 16 hours.

It is often sold in a powder form, which can be either snorted or injected. Crystal meth is the solid form of the drug, which is smoked in a pipe.

What are the effects on the body?

Smoking crystal meth causes an increase in both body temperature and blood pressure. In some cases, the drug can lead to hallucinations, paranoia and sometimes psychotic behaviour.

"After extreme use of crystal meth, I've seen friends put in straightjackets because the effects of crystal meth can be confused with schizophrenia," a frequent crystal meth user explained.

How does it feel?

Methamphetamine stimulates the central nervous system, causing both alertness and elation. Often this results in an obsessive cleaning, but, for most users, the real thrill comes from a sense of sexual liberation, which can result in wild, abandoned sexual experiences that can last for hours.

– Chris Webden

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2002 THE GAZETTE