Meth, or methamphetamine, is a highly addictive drug that has impacted numerous lives across the country and beyond. It may also be known by its many users under illicit names like glass, speed, crystal, ice, and others. It falls second behind only marijuana as one of the most popular illegal drugs in the United States. In fact, in 2016 alone, more than 1.6 million people were impacted negatively by meth use and addiction. Unfortunately, meth is a highly addictive substance that can quickly result in both a physical and mental addiction. Withdrawal from meth comes with considerable health effects, but help is available for a successful recovery from meth addiction.

How Long Are the Effects of Meth?

Within as few as three minutes after snorting meth or as little as 15 minutes of oral intake, a user will begin to feel the significant effects of their usage. This drug directly impacts the central nervous system as a strong stimulant. Its effects on the body can be broken down into three stages. The first stage is often referred to as a rush. During this stage, dopamine hits the brain in high quantities, creating an intense and extremely pleasant sensation that lasts roughly 30 minutes. Dopamine is a brain chemical that is associated with feelings of euphoria. This stage is followed by a high that can affect the body for as long as 16 hours. During this phase, the user will be hyper-alert, which may be accompanied by a rapid train of thought and fast speech patterns. After the high passes, the users experience a crash. Itching, paranoia, and insomnia are common for users at this point. This is when the strong desire to use meth again takes hold. The intensity of the crash and the strength of the cravings for more meth are what drive the addiction. If the user does not give in to the craving for more meth, more significant withdrawal symptoms will develop.

What Is the Half-Life of Meth?

Each illicit substance has specific longevity in the body. This is defined by its half-life. Half-life describes the amount of time it takes for the body to clear half of the substance from your body. In order to clear meth out of your system, the meth must be metabolized through the body’s organs and removed via the bloodstream and urine. Regardless of how meth is ingested in your body, the half-life is approximately 10 hours. This means that half of the ingested meth is still in the body after 10 hours. After 20 hours, a quarter of the substance may have been removed from the system. However, you should be aware that the specific half-life time can vary from person to person and may be as long as 34 hours. However, the high from meth will fade well before the substance has been fully removed from your system. Because of this, a meth addict may crave and use meth again even with a relatively sizable amount of the substance is still in the body.

How Long Does Meth Stay in Your System?

If half of the meth you take will remain in your body after 10 hours, you may wonder, “How long does meth stay in your system?” When someone asks this question, they often want to know when they will have a clean blood or urine test. After you ingest meth, the substance will be metabolized through the bloodstream, which means that it will pass through the liver and kidneys. By doing so, it will eventually leave the body through urine. This means that you will fail both urine and blood tests when meth is in your system.

The exact length of time that it will remain in your system depends on your body’s metabolic rate. It will also depend on how frequently you use meth and the amount of meth that has been used. Because of the long half-life of meth, it can remain in the body in decreasing amounts for up to 10 days. Generally, you may pass a blood and urine test until at least 72 hours have passed since the last use, but this may be as long as five days. The presence of meth usage may still be detected through hair samples long after a person gets clean. Saliva is also increasingly used for drug tests. A drug test may remain positive for as long as four days through saliva.

Meth Withdrawal

The amount of meth in your system will gradually reduce over a matter of days. Cravings will intensify if you do not ingest meth again as it is cleansed from your body. Eventually, you will experience increasingly unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Some of the effects of meth withdrawal can actually be dangerous. For this reason, it is generally safer for a meth addict to seek professional treatment for withdrawal and recovery. Meth affects the central nervous system, including brain chemicals. Because of this, some of the many withdrawal symptoms that an individual may experience include dehydration, fatigue, insomnia, headaches, muscle spasms and pains, psychosis, and insomnia. Withdrawing from meth may also come with various health effects that may be felt in the body for longer periods. These include depression, cognitive issues, anxiety, and irregular sleep patterns.

How to Get Meth Out of Your System

Withdrawal symptoms from meth can be uncomfortable and even painful, and you may experience these symptoms for many days until the substance has completely been cleansed from your system. Many meth addicts want to know if there is a faster and less uncomfortable way to get clean after using meth. Because meth is metabolized through the kidneys and liver and evacuated through urine, increasing your water intake can be moderately helpful. However, many addicts find the cravings too intense to complete the withdrawal process on their own. Still, others will give in to cravings even after the substance has been completely removed from the body through natural processes. Because of this, many addicts will seek medical treatment in a recovery clinic. Through medically-assisted treatment, users can safely and more comfortably get clean regardless of how severe their addiction may be.

How Long Does It Take to Get Addicted to Meth

Meth is extremely addictive. In fact, many users will feel intense cravings after the high from their first use subsides. Withdrawal symptoms may be felt after the first usage as well. Over time, some users may consume greater amounts of meth to achieve the same sense of euphoria or to increase their sense of euphoria for a greater high. Addiction may be established after the first time that you use meth, but addiction can deepen over time as usage continues and even increases. The ease of getting addicted to meth and the likelihood for the addiction to deepen are some of the primary reasons why meth is such an addictive substance. Regardless of how long you have been using meth, rest assured that help overcoming your addiction is available.

Seek Help for Your Addiction

Are you struggling with an addiction to meth? Rest assured that help is available. Withdrawal and recovery from meth addiction can be rough and potentially dangerous because of how serious some of the withdrawal symptoms can be, but professional intervention can make the process more bearable and successful. To learn more about the help that is available to you, contact our compassionate, knowledgeable team at New Jersey Addiction Resources for assistance today.