Physical Effects of Amphetamines Abuse

What Does an Amphetamine High Feel Like?

Taking amphetamines can be an intense experience lasting from a few hours to a few days. The experience begins about 10 to 15 minutes after taking an amphetamine pill, or 5 to 10 minutes after snorting. After onset of the drug, amphetamines can cause tingling and radiating feelings in the body, quickly followed by energy surges. Alertness increases and mental focus rises, as restlessness sets in within the body. Amphetamine users often report “god complexes,” triggering a temporary raise in self-confidence and feelings of power. Social interactions become more attractive, and rapid speech sets in.

What Are the Physical Effects of Amphetamines?

Amphetamines stimulate the production of the hormones responsible for the bodies “fight or flight” responses, naturally only triggered in a crisis. During amphetamine use, blood vessels constrict, resulting in an increase in blood pressure, a racing heart rate (tachycardia) or irregular heartbeats (arrhythmia). Frequent use can lead to cardiac problems including damage to the heart walls and heart attacks.

Muscle tension caused by amphetamine use is often expressed in jaw clenching and teeth grinding, which can result in severe damage to the teeth and gums. Amphetamines are also highly effective at suppressing appetite—some amphetamine addicted individuals can go for days without eating, causing rapid weight loss. The lack of food can result in stomach pain, as well as long-term digestive issues. Both dental and digestive problems are complicated by extreme dehydration experienced during amphetamine use.

Due to the insomniac effects of amphetamines, users can stay awake for days, finding themselves extremely tired and fatigued after use. This leads many addicted individuals to take more amphetamines rather than coming down—a practice known as to “topping up”—continuing the high for another 4 to 8 hours. In some cases, amphetamine dependent individuals will keep using for week-long binges. However, when they do stop ingesting amphetamines, users experience a severe “crash,” collapsing into days-long sleep.

Can You Overdose From Amphetamine?

While rarely fatal, amphetamine overdose is extremely unpleasant. Physically, overdose causes restlessness, a surging heart rate, chest pain, shaking, and even seizures. Amphetamine addicted individuals who overdose can also suffer from severe and serious dehydration. Psychologically, they may become delusional or confused, or enter into a schizophrenic-like paranoid psychosis.

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