Crystal meth, (clinically known as methamphetamine) is a type of stimulant that has a fast and direct effect to the brain chemicals, imitating the way they receive, process and transmit messages in the brain receptors and synapse.

Of all drug stimulants, crystal meth is considered as the most potent even in small doses because of its powder form that can be snorted or smoked. As such, it is also referred to as “crank”, “tweak” or “go-fast”.

Crystal meth enters the brain, triggering a sudden cascading release of three neurotransmitters: serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine. These are brain chemicals directly affecting human behavior and emotions. Serotonin controls anger, aggression, sleep, appetite and metabolism. Dopamine affects behavior like mood, motor activity, motivation-reward cognition, and attention while norepinephrine is a stress hormone responsible for attention-response actions and increase in the heart rate.

Legally, methamphetamines are prescribed to treat a number of psychological and emotional illnesses like depression. However, its stimulating properties make it prone to abuse and addiction. Its illegal use include for weight loss, to remain awake and alert, sustain motivation, heighten mental clarity and enhance pleasure.

Crystal meth taken orally produce what meth addicts call a “rush” while those that take it orally or through injection reported a feeling of intense sensation. Short-term effects of crystal meth include increased attention, wakefulness, feeling of physical strength, increase in respiration, loss of hunger or appetite and hyperactivity.

A single yet sudden large dose of crystal meth into the body is enough to damage the nerve cells in the brain. Too much dosage can produce lethal results like hyperthermia, lead poisoning and mental retardation for babies with mothers who are meth addicts.