Crystal Meth

What to Expect When You’re Ready To Stop Your Meth Use

The urges are unbearable. When you’ve turned to meth to get by and keep yourself happy for so long, what else can you do?

It started with just a desire to escape and feel better, but quickly it got out of control, and now you can’t go more than a few hours without the cravings coming back. 

Meth has slowly taken away the people, work, and general life around you, and now you want your life back. 

Where do you turn? What is it like getting off of meth? Can you even do it?

All of these questions are normal to consider, but there are answers to all of them, and the most important one is yes, you can do it. 

If you’re reading this because a loved one is addicted to meth and you want to help, they can do it, too. 

What is Methamphetamine and Why Is It So Addictive?

Also known as meth, ice, glass, and crystal, methamphetamine is a stimulant that holds incredible power over the person using it. 

The illegal meth that’s commonly misused comes from makeshift labs using a mixture of ingredients like methanol, ether, ammonia, metals, and other chemicals. 

The process of making meth in these labs is incredibly dangerous, and that’s why you often hear of meth lab explosions. 

The story of what happens to the meth after production is well-known: it goes from producer to dealer to consumer. The consumer will then use meth by smoking, snorting, or injecting it, depending on the form of meth they have. 

Meth releases an incredible amount of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is better explained as the chemical that makes you feel good. 

Meth is a stimulant that also gives those who use it an incredible rush of adrenaline, and they can stay awake for days at a time.

Meth is normally found in one of three forms:

  • Crystallized
    • Smoked or injected
  • Powder
    • Snorted, injected, swallowed, or pressed into pills and taken
  • Base
    • Also known as wax
    • Swallowed or injected

No matter how it’s taken or the form of the substance, there is great power in even one hit of meth. 

Meth addiction comes on and continues when those addicted feel they cannot handle the sometimes awful withdrawal from meth. Withdrawal can begin quickly, as those frequently using meth typically binge and then crash from the binge. 

Because it’s so difficult to stop using meth, the number of people in the United States with a meth problem continues to climb. 

The Scope of Meth Addiction in the United States

If you have an addiction to meth, a substance use disorder, you may feel all alone and like nobody understands what you’re going through. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), from 2015-18, 1.6 million people used meth at least once. Nearly 900,000 of those 1.6 million faced an addiction to meth. 

When people step away from you during your addiction struggles, leaving you with a feeling of loneliness, it’s easy to feel like nobody understands. Please remember there are many out there who have these struggles along with you, and there is hope for recovery. 

Can I Overcome Addiction to Methamphetamine?

Overcoming any addiction is a very difficult task. Without a well-built plan for treatment, the odds of success in recovery are small. For those with an addiction to methamphetamine, the chances are even smaller with the power the substance can have over a person. 

However, it is possible to overcome addiction with a plan of detox, rehab, and aftercare. 

Step One in Meth Treatment: Detoxification 

Detoxification is the process of removing toxins from the body. This process is different for everyone who goes through it, and there are many different reasons why. 

The factors playing a role in the length and severity of withdrawal from meth include amount of meth used, amount of time meth has been used, frequency of use, frequency of other drug usage, general health, age, and method of consumption. 

In terms of consumption, it’s been found that if you inject meth as your normal method, you will likely experience longer and more intense withdrawal. 

Typically, the symptoms of withdrawal include:

  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia (can’t sleep)
  • Fever
  • Hallucinations (seeing things that aren’t there)
  • Paranoia (fear that others don’t like or want to harm you)
  • Confusion 
  • Tremors
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Anxiety
  • Stomach pains 
  • Nausea
  • Dehydration 
  • Lack of motivation 
  • Itchiness of the eyes

These symptoms again vary from person to person and can be helped with use of medical supervision throughout the detox process. 

Unlike with some other substance use disorders, there are no FDA approved medications for treatment of meth addiction. However, doctors may prescribe some medications that can help with the symptoms felt.

The Levels of Detox for Meth Rehab

In general, a patient will experience meth detox in four levels. For those with the most severe cases of substance use disorder, symptoms can last upward of a month. 

During the first two days of withdrawal from meth addiction, you will face the “crash” period. During this time, the most common symptom is fatigue, a decline in energy, nausea, cramping, and sweating. 

From days 3-10, those withdrawing will typically peak. As your body deals with learning to function without meth, your brain will constantly be urging you to return for more to stop the discomfort. 

During this time, you will often experience depression, anxiety, fatigue, tremors, and muscle aches. 

Symptoms of withdrawal typically subside around the two-week mark. Cravings will persist, and it will be important to continue treatment for depression, anxiety, and fatigue. 

After a month, physical withdrawal symptoms are mostly non-existent. Mentally, you will still face cravings. But with the continued support of treatment workers, these feelings can be dampened. 

Step Two to Treat Methamphetamine Addiction: Rehab

After detox takes place, and sometimes during if a person is handling the process better than expected, treatment begins. 

Whether you live in a residential treatment facility or take part in outpatient treatment, the process is more successful if you find a place with a structured mix of evidence-based therapies and alternative therapies that provide a full range of options. By getting treatment at a facility that offers both types of therapies, you’re truly receiving holistic treatment that heals your whole self and not just the addiction you face. 

Treatment for Meth Can and Should Include a Mix of the Following:

  • Personalized treatment 
    • Individual therapy
    • Customizable plans 
  • Group therapy sessions
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
    • Commonly called talk therapy. It focuses on identifying your negative thoughts and behaviors that lead to addictive behaviors.
  • Life skills training
    • Communication skills
    • Anger management
    • Vocational skills
  • Alternative therapies
    • Outdoor therapy
    • Yoga
    • Mindfulness and meditation 
    • Tai chi
    • Exercise classes
    • Journaling
    • Hiking
    • Cooking classes

Treatment is different for everyone, and for that reason you should consider what the most important things are for you to have in treatment. By creating a “must have” list, you increase the probability of success and also narrow the choices in a very dense field. 

After all, you are investing in the future of your life. 

Step Three in Meth Addiction Treatment: Aftercare

A big part of successful recovery is what happens after leaving a treatment facility — also known as aftercare. 

After leaving treatment, you’re going to be faced with real-life situations and everyday stresses that may leave you wanting to return to your substance of choice. But by this time, hopefully you will have built a strong system during treatment that will help you avoid these situations. 

When you feel the temptation becoming too strong, it’s best to have the support of a facility even after you leave. A facility that goes the extra mile and actually provides an aftercare plan is even better. 

Opportunities to lapse or relapse are going to come about. It’s best to have somewhere to turn for help when those opportunities arise. 

Where Can You Find All of These Things?

For residents of New Mexico, the path to recovery is made simpler with the help of Shadow Mountain Recovery Centers. With locations in Santa Fe, Taos, and Albuquerque, residents can get all of the components of successful drug treatment in one place. 

Shadow Mountain started with family in mind. It’s the heart and soul of our treatment centers. Our centers are places of healing and building. This includes helping to rebuild your family life and personal life, both of which have potentially been damaged by your substance use. 

Meth addiction treatment, and drug addiction treatment in general, is not a quick fix, and we will never promise that. Nor, despite our state-of-the-art facilities and scenic views, will we let you believe you’re getting a luxury vacation. 

Treatment and recovery are a lifelong process that comes with a lot of positive and negative days. By providing you a true and challenging treatment, you will be best prepared for the hard days. 

While taking part in the necessary parts of treatment that will prepare you, you’ll be treated to absolutely stunning nature and natural beauty at any of our locations. 

New Mexico provides plenty of beautiful sites, and our locations are situated among the best. 

You’ll be able to experience the beauty of our community in alternative therapies like yoga, hiking, and more while also getting the best and most proven evidence-based treatments. 

Call Shadow Mountain Today

If you believe it’s time for meth addiction treatment that begins with detox and continues into rehab and then aftercare, the call to make is to us at Shadow Mountain Recovery. 

Our mission is to make quality treatment available to those who need it most, and if you’re struggling with meth addiction, that includes you. 

Call us at 800-203-8249 to begin your journey to recovery with us. 


Where should I go for treatment of meth addiction?

Treatment for meth addiction is best done with a center that offers the full range of detox, rehab, and aftercare. By combining each of these things, you’re giving yourself the best chance for success and recovery. 

The teams at Shadow Mountain Recovery Centers work day and night to ensure you have a real shot at long-term recovery. 

What is the most recent treatment for meth addiction?

New forms of treatment come along often for each kind of substance use disorder. At Shadow Mountain Recovery, we use evidence-based therapy models to ensure our patients are receiving a top level of care that is unmatched. 

Along with our traditional evidence-based models, we also offer alternative forms of treatment, such as outdoor therapy that includes hiking, adventures, and meditation.

Don’t wait another day to get the help you or a loved one needs. Call us now.