Paranoia and Crystal Meth: An Episode of Addiction That Comes with Side Effects

The side effects that come with addiction and crystal methThere are major concerns about the use of crystal methamphetamine; the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) a stimulant drug, crystal meth can lead to a person experiencing severe mood swings, tremors or convulsions, hypothermia, significant weight loss and more. “Tweaking” is a term used when the drug is no longer producing a “high” effect. A person going through this stage may experience intense cravings and urges to use the substance – and psychotic symptoms, like paranoia, can really place a person in danger.

Ice psychosis is the term used to describe this intense paranoia that can occur from crystal meth. The Conversation, a website that provides information on culture, health and medicine, politics and society, and more, defines ice psychosis as,

“…Suspiciousness and paranoia, hallucinations, and unusual or agitated behavior. Individuals often lose touch with reality, and may not have an understanding of what is happening to them.”

A 2019 study published in the journal Clinical Psychology Review emphasizes that throughout ice psychosis, negative voices can occur which make a person prone to experiencing the following symptoms:

  • Hypervigilance
  • Shame and Self-blame
  • Dissociation
  • Trouble processing emotions

Researchers have pondered how some individuals experience ice psychosis and others don’t; in 2018, researchers found that the occurrence of ice psychosis is related to the frequency of methamphetamine use and the severity of the dependence.  If you have a loved one who has struggled with crystal methamphetamine dependency, ice psychosis could be a very real concern – and the best way for your loved one to recover from this is to seek help.

Psychological interventions are often what’s needed, and recovery may include detoxification along with individual and group support, medical assistance, nutritional guidance and more. 12-Step programs have been shown to provide those in addiction recovery with a valuable support network along with structure to develop healthier ways of living. Don’t wait any longer to seek the help that you or your loved one needs – you’re not alone, and there are effective ways to help a person regain stability after ice psychosis.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.