What happens to your body when you use methamphetamine?

Short-Term Effects

The short-term effects of methamphetamine include:

  • feeling very awake and active
  • lack of appetite
  • fast heart rate and irregular heartbeat
  • higher blood pressure
  • higher body temperature
  • increased risk for HIV/AIDS or hepatitis (a liver disease) from unsafe sex and shared needles
  • increased attention
  • euphoria, or a “high”

Methamphetamine can be even more harmful when mixed with alcohol.   

Long-Term Effects

Continued methamphetamine use can cause effects that last for a long time, even after a person quits using the drug. These effects include:

meth mouthCourtesy of the American Dental Association
  • addiction
  • extreme weight loss
  • anxiety and confusion
  • problems sleeping
  • mood swings
  • severe dental problems, known as “meth mouth”
  • violent behavior
  • psychosis (hearing, seeing, or feeling things that are not there)
  • skin sores caused by scratching
  • problems with thinking, emotion, and memory
  • paranoia—unreasonable distrust of others