Questions and Answers


Meth is a filthy blend of toxic chemicals, methamphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant that acts like adrenaline. Methamphetamine has been derived from amphetamine, which in the 1960s was available as a diet and pep pill. Meth is found in the following forms; pills, powder, and crystals. The appearance of methamphetamine varies depending on the process and ingredients that are used. It can be smoked, snorted, inhaled, and injected. Methamphetamine in powder form packaged in plastic bags known as point bags. The powder comes in shades of yellow, brown, pink, orange and white.  

Methamphetamine is also known as Ice, shard, crank, and P.

Crystal meth or Ice is named for its ice like crystal form, it is most potent and becoming common in New Zealand. The crystals are white or translucent and heated then inhaled through a pipe or a broken light bulb.

Using a pipe Methamphetamine pipes

Meth is commonly smoked or inhaled after heating using an ice-pipe that can be bought in local dairies. They are made of glass with a bowl and stem, the meth is placed in the bowl and heated with a lighter or gas lighter.

Methamphetamine being smoked in a light bulb

Light bulbs are sometimes used as pipes. The base of the bulb and the filament are removed and methamphetamine is inserted through the opening. The drug is then heated by a lighter and the vapour is inhaled as it escapes. The vapour enters the bloodstream directly through the lungs causing a euphoric high which can last six to eight hours or longer.

Chasing the dragon

Chasing the dragon’ is a method where the drug is placed on a creased piece of aluminium foil and heated from underneath with a flame. The vapour rises as it heats and is then inhaled


Pipe and point bag of methamphetamine or ‘p’




Because meth is a stimulant it affects the body’s cardiovascular and temperature-regulating systems and physical exertion increases the hazards of meth use. The cardiovascular side effects of using the drug are chest pains and hypertension, which can result in cardiovascular collapse and death. In addition, methamphetamine causes accelerated heartbeat, elevated blood pressure, and irreversible damage to blood vessels in the brain.

Other effects can result in fatal kidney and lung disorders, brain damage, liver damage, and blood clots. A user will suffer chronic depression, hallucinations, violent and aggressive behaviour as they continue, malnutrition, disturbed personality development, and a deficient immune system.

Meth Mouth


Dentists in America are now asked to report incidences of ‘meth mouth’, which refers to the deterioration of a methamphetamine user’s teeth. It is caused by ‘dry mouth’ which happens because the vapours of the drug contain toxic chemicals which reduce the saliva flow. Bacteria then flourishes and teeth rot. This can be rapid, and as personal care deteriorates so does oral hygiene, increasing the damage.

 When using methamphetamine, people become anxious and nervous; they talk incessantly, are extremely moody, irritable and purposeless. They start exhibiting repetitive behaviours and will pick at their skin or pull out their hair.

They will suffer sleep disturbances, a false sense of confidence and power; aggressive or violent behaviour, when previously they may have been happy and friendly. They show disinterest in previously enjoyed activities and severe depression, which increases the risk of suicide.

 Methamphetamine users can suffer from a drug induced psychotic experience where they believe there are insects crawling under their skin. They are known as meth mites. The user will start to carve the imaginary mites out of their body, picking and digging with scissors, tweezers and knives or needles for hours.

Over time users will develop respiratory disorders, dizziness, tooth grinding, impaired speech, dry or itchy skin, loss of appetite, acne, sores, numbness, and sweating. As use advances though, while they may have many of the above signs and symptoms, they will lie about the effects the drug is having, be oblivious to how they appear, and deny they need help. Methamphetamine is a filthy, dirty, toxic drug, and in an attempt to rid itself of poisons, the body excretes the drug through the skin.

Meth Sores



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