Stimulants drugs affect the body in many ways. They expedite messages sent by the brain. They also increase a person’s energy level. While stimulants provide a short-term boost, relying on them can result in addiction and unpleasant side effects. This guide examines what qualifies as stimulants, their effects on the body, and treatment tracks for those addicted.
What are Stimulants?
Stimulants can be manufactured or derived from natural sources. Commonly known examples include caffeine, cocaine, nicotine, ice, amphetamines, khat, pseudoephedrine, and betel nut. People are prescribed stimulants like dextroamphetamine and methylphenidate to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or narcolepsy.
Impact on the Body
The effects of stimulants vary based on a person’s gender, size, weight, and dosage. Generally, when someone uses stimulants, they can experience:
- Rapid heart rate
- Hypervigilance or anxiety
- Higher energy levels
- Increased talkativeness
When a person ingests stimulants, the drugs increase the brain’s production of dopamine and norepinephrine. Dopamine is associated with feelings of pleasure, and an increase in its production means that people may experience a short-lived euphoria. Meanwhile, norepinephrine affects blood pressure, heart rate, breathing, and more. This is why it’s common for people taking stimulants to complain of a racing heart or pounding heartbeat.
Side Effects of Stimulant Use
Using prescription stimulants carries significant risk, especially when used counter to your doctor’s instructions. Illicit stimulants can create even more severe side effects. People taking these drugs can experience increased anxiousness, nausea, and hotter body temperatures. In more severe instances, there could be tremors, seizures, coma, and death.
Are Stimulants Addictive?
Yes, some stimulants are extremely addictive. Over time, as the body adjusts to the amount of neurotransmitters created by stimulant use, it can require a higher dosage to achieve the same effects. When this happens, a person becomes dependent on this drug to boost their mood or maintain energy throughout the day.
Signs of Stimulant Addiction
When someone becomes addicted, they might exhibit some of the following behaviors:
- Prioritizing drug use over other aspects of their life
- Creating hidden compartments to mask how much they’re using
- Fidgeting and increased anxiety
Treatment is Available
Professional help is the wisest course of action for those struggling with stimulant use. Often, this includes individual treatment, group therapies, and other activities designed to help someone gain perspective, learn why they turned to stimulants, and develop coping mechanisms to curtail use.
We provide a safe, nurturing space for those suffering from stimulant addiction to receive the care they deserve. Using a faith-based recovery program, we’ll help you employ Biblical principles to combat cravings and lead you to a peaceful and promising future. Help begins when you contact us.