Substance Use

What Is Tweaking on Meth?

woman looking in mirror tweaking on meth

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What Is Tweaking on Meth?

Tweaking is a slang term used to describe the dangerous and erratic behavior that can occur when someone abuses meth or crystal meth for an extended period of time, without sleeping or eating. This is called a meth binge.

People who are tweaking may experience extreme paranoia, hallucinations, violence, and other unpredictable behaviors that put their health and the health of others at risk.

Is meth abuse a problem for you or a loved one? Zinnia Health offers comprehensive treatment programs to help you get back on the right path. We believe that everyone deserves access to quality addiction treatment services. Call our helpline 24/7 at (855) 430-9439 to find the right treatment facility for you.

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What Is the Definition of “Tweaking”?

According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, after three or more days without proper sleep, the last stage of methamphetamine misuse is set into motion. The affected individual becomes paranoid and easily agitated. This stage is termed “tweaking,” while the meth user is known as a “tweaker.”

In most cases, individuals who use methamphetamine need ever-increasing doses to feel the same level of euphoria they experienced before. Achieving this effect is notoriously difficult, leading to outbursts of frustration and agitation as well as erratic behavior.

Tweakers are highly unpredictable and can often be a threat to themselves or others, leading them to behaviors such as outbursts of aggression, sudden criminal activity, and domestic disputes. Exercise caution when interacting with these individuals, as their behavior may be unpredictable.

What Does Tweaking on Meth Do to a Person?

Symptoms of tweaking include:

  • Rapid eye movements (up to 10 times faster than usual)
  • Voice quivering
  • Jerky or brisk movements

Tweakers may try to suppress or disguise physical signs of meth use by using depressants such as alcohol and opioids. However, this intensifies their feelings of fear, anger, and aggravation.

What Is the Most Common Cause of Death Among Tweakers?

The most common cause of death among tweakers is an overdose. However, burns and explosions are often a result of illegal meth production.

According to MedlinePlus, methamphetamines can cause an immediate and severe overdose or a prolonged one due to long-term drug use.

1. Acute Overdose

When someone ingests methamphetamine, whether intentionally or inadvertently, an acute overdose can occur with potentially fatal consequences.

2. Chronic Overdose

Frequent methamphetamine abuse can have a detrimental long-term impact on the user’s health, referred to as “chronic overdose.”

3. Burns or Explosions

Illegal methamphetamine production presents a serious risk of exposure to hazardous chemicals and potential burns or explosions.

Meth abuse is a devastating disorder that can cause serious damage to an individual’s physical and mental health as well as to their relationships, career, and overall quality of life. Zinnia Health offers compassionate care from experienced professionals specializing in treating meth addiction. Call 24/7 at (855) 430-9439 to get started.

What Is the Short-Term Effect of Meth Use?

According to MedlinePlus, short-term effects of meth use include:

  • Feelings of joy
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Sweating
  • Restlessness
  • Dry mouth
  • Increased body temperature
  • Large, wide pupils
  • Agitation
  • Chest pain
  • Coma or unresponsiveness (in extreme cases)
  • Heart attack
  • Irregular or stopped heartbeat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Very high body temperature
  • Kidney damage and possibly kidney failure
  • Paranoia
  • Seizures
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Stroke

What Is the Long-Term Impact of Meth Use?

According to MedlinePlus, meth is highly addictive. The long-term effects of methamphetamine include:

  • Psychological problems such as delusions, extreme paranoia, mood swings, and an inability to sleep
  • Missing and rotted teeth (“meth mouth”)
  • Repeated infections
  • Severe weight loss
  • Skin problems such as abscesses or boils

Treatment and Support for Meth Addiction

Meth addiction can be an extremely difficult disorder to overcome. It requires comprehensive treatment involving individualized care, counseling, and support, as meth withdrawal can include intense cravings.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), there is currently no FDA-approved medication for meth addiction; however, leading a meth-free life is achievable.

1. Behavioral Therapies

Different types of behavioral therapies have proven successful. For example, motivation incentives provide rewards when people choose not to consume methamphetamine or other substances. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) helps individuals manage scenarios that may trigger them to use drugs again.

According to a report published in the National Library of Medicine, CBT got its start when Aaron Beck noticed his depressed patients often demonstrated cognitive inconsistencies. As a result, he started to perceive depression not as a mood disorder but instead as an emotional condition.

Through careful observation and meticulous findings, Beck created the revolutionary idea of a new mental health model: CBT. Currently, CBT is the most thoroughly researched of all psychotherapies with various evidence-based treatment protocols.

This attests to its efficacy in providing relief for those suffering from mental health or substance abuse issues.

2. Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

According to the National Institutes of Health, the results of a recent clinical trial have revealed that, when taken in combination, injectable naltrexone and oral bupropion are safe and effective for treating adults with moderate to severe methamphetamine dependence.

The study ran from 2017 to 2019 at various local clinics and treatment programs across the United States. It involved 403 adults between ages of 18-65 who suffer from moderate to serious methamphetamine use disorder. All participants aspired to decrease or entirely discontinue their use of the drug and were randomly split into either the treatment or control group.

MAT works by blocking methamphetamine receptors in the brain, which reduces cravings and decreases the risk of relapse. It also helps to reduce withdrawal symptoms such as:

  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Agitation

Start Your Recovery From Meth Addiction

The first step is to seek help from a certified treatment provider who can guide you through the recovery process. They will work with you to create a tailored treatment plan, including detox. They’ll also help you address any underlying issues that may be contributing to your substance abuse.

If you or a family member is facing meth addiction, Zinnia Health offers comprehensive treatment plans to help turn your life around. We believe that everyone deserves support for getting their lives back on track. Call us 24/7 at (855) 430-9439 and let our team help you find the perfect inpatient or outpatient facility to best serve your needs.

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(855) 430-9439
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