What can be classified as a stimulant? A stimulant can be an illegal substance or prescription medication, which is used to boost cognitive function and alertness of an individual’s central nervous system. A stimulant can be taken orally, snorted or injected. Some examples of stimulants are Cocaine, Crack Cocaine and Crystal Meth, which are perhaps the most notorious. These illegal stimulants produce effects nearly identical to prescription drugs, except they have a shorter life and produce a much more intense high. Some examples of prescription stimulants are Adderall, Steroids and antidepressants.
Why do individuals abuse stimulants? Simply put, stimulants produce a significant increase in the levels of dopamine in the brain, which leads to the individual feeling effects such as euphoria, energy, decreased appetite and wakefulness. However, when an individual continues to use and abuse stimulants, they can develop a dependence on it that can turn into addiction, and also suffer severe damage to the brain and their general health.
Stimulant Addiction Treatment
The first and most difficult step in recovering from an addiction is making the decision to stop using the drug. Once the individual has made that decision, they can rest assured that they have many options for treatment. Some treatment options for stimulant addiction are:
The United States has a multitude of treatment centers across the country specialising in beating addiction. These centers are not merely for those individuals who are struggling with an addiction to illegal drugs, but also those hooked on prescription stimulants.
Detox from Stimulants
Detoxing from the drugs is the first step to treating an addiction. A detox typically lasts up to a week, but could last longer depending on how severe the individual’s addiction is. An individual who has been abusing stimulants for a longer period of time and in increasing doses will take longer to detox. The time taken for detox also depends on which drug the individual has been abusing. For example, individuals who are addicted to Cocaine go through detox quicker, than those addicted to Adderall. During detox, the individual can expect to experience withdrawal symptoms like mood swings, depression, disturbed sleep, headaches and fatigue.
So far there haven’t been any pharmaceutical drugs formulated for the treatment of stimulant addiction. However, there have been some studies which show that there are certain drugs which have the potential to reduce cravings and help recovery. Prozac and Naltrexone are two such drugs.
Withdrawal can be very unpleasant and the chances of the individual relapsing are very high. It is recommended that the individual seeks professional medical advice before trying to quit taking prescription stimulants.
Sustain Recovery provides treatment for young adults recently in a safe and structured environment. To learn more about the elements of transitioning to sober living, contact us about our programs and how we can help you.