Methamphetamine (known on the street as "speed," "meth," "crank," "crystal-meth") is a central nervous system stimulant that is among the most dangerous drugs available. Like cocaine, it is a powerful "upper" that produces alertness and feelings of elation, along with a variety of adverse reactions. Methamphetamine is sometimes called the "poor man’s cocaine," because it costs nearly the same as cocaine with much longer lasting effects.
Dangers and consequences of meth use include:
- nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
- skin ulceration and infection, the result of picking at imaginary bugs
- paranoia, anxiety, irritability
- increased blood pressure due to the constriction of blood vessels (may produce headaches, chest pain, or irregular heartbeat and lead to stroke or heart attack)
- permanent brain cell damage
- for intravenous (IV) users: AIDS, hepatitis, infections and sores at the injection site, and infection of the heart lining and valves (endocarditis)