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Stimulants Addiction


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Stimulants Addiction Information

People use drugs for a variety of reasons, but in general they want to change the way they feel. Some drugs help calm you down or “quiet the noise,” while others bring up your energy. The second group are stimulants, more commonly known as uppers.

Almost no drug addiction is intentional. With uppers, it often begins with wanting a little more energy for a special occasion or a difficult task or projects. The user loves the way they feel and end up using more and more.

Many of are addicted to the most common stimulant, caffeine. Perhaps you’re the type of person who can’t get your morning started without a cup of coffee. Maybe you can’t get through the afternoon without a soda. Nicotine is another stimulant that many struggle with, and it can also cause long-term health problems. The types of stimulants we’re talking about here, however, can have much more drastic effects on your body and on your life.

It takes for very little for occasional use of a stimulant, especially the illegal varieties, to escalate into drug abuse and addiction. In most cases, addiction treatment programs are the only way to kick the habit … both in a medically safe way and to learn how to quit for long term recovery.

Topics Covered Below:
  • Types of Stimulants
  • Stimulant Addiction
  • Withdrawal from Stimulants
  • Treatment
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Peaks Recovery is medically staffed by a primary care physician, a psychiatrist, and around the clock nursing. The medical team acumen provides the safest medical detox in the state of Colorado. Unlike most drug and alcohol detox programs, our medical team is not contracted and is onsite throughout the day to ensure your safety and comfort.

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Mental health issues or “Co-occurring Disorders” are commonly associated with Substance Abuse and Addiction. Peaks Recovery is a complete Dual Diagnosis Addiction Treatment Facility. Our Clinical staff Specialties cover a wide range of Mental Health disorders so recovery can encompass the individual as a whole.

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How Stimulants Work

Stimulants affect certain chemicals in the brain. In general, they increase dopamine and concentration. Prescription stimulants, like those prescribed for Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), are intended to increase focus and provide a sense of calm. Like many other drugs, they can cause a sense of euphoria, which makes them very addictive.

Illegal stimulants cause a high that includes an extreme sense of alertness and awakeness.Certain drugs, like cocaine or speed (amphetamines), are also used for weight loss because they are appetite suppressants.

Abuse of almost any type of stimulant can cause heart damage. Many of these substances cause paranoia and hyperactivity. Also, because illegal stimulants are often sold in mixed or altered form, one bad dose can result in an allergic reaction, overdose or death.

Types of Stimulants


Amphetamine include meth (see below), speed (amphetamine sulphate) and dexamphetamine ( adderall also contains dexamphetamine - see below), which is used to treat ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and narcolepsy. They generally come in pill, crystal or powder form.


Ephedrine is a legal stimulant often prescribed for breathing and bronchial issues. It is often used in weight loss supplements intended to increase fat burning and metabolism rates. Most of these supplements have been banned in the U.S.

Ephedrine can also be used to make meth. Since the legal pill form of the drug is prescribed by doctors, this may be a situation where meth users begin doctor shopping (visiting different doctors trying to obtain prescriptions.)

MDMA (Ecstacy)

Ecstacy is powerful drug that alters the mind, and may include increased physical sensation, a more outgoing personality, reduced anxiety, and hallucinations. It is usually taken in pill form, but some users snort it in powder form or swallow it in liquid form. When mixed with other illegal substances, it is sold as Molly.


Mephedrone is a synthetic stimulant. It was legal in the U.S. until 2011. It is similar to ecstasy, in that it increases physical pleasure and creates euphoria. It is generally found in pill or powder form.


Methamphetamine, more commonly known as just meth, has becoming increasingly popular over the last decade. It is usually taken in pill or powder form. Crystal meth, however, is glass fragments or “rocks” that are melted down and smoked.


Cocaine is derived from the South American coca plant. It comes in a white powder form and is usually snorted. It can also be mixed with water for injection or smoked.

Crack cocaine, which is another form of this drug, is smoked and provides a shorter, more intense high.

Long-term cocaine use can damage organs, especially the heart, and increase risk of seizures and strokes.


Though Adderall is prescribed for diagnosed ADHD, many people become addicted to it because they try it to achieve more focus for school or work projects. It is both prescribed legally and sold illegally on the streets. Though usually taken in pill form, some people snort it in powder form.

Bath Salts

Bath salts” are officially known as synthetic cathinones. They are usually found in crystal-like powder form and users swallow, snort, smoke, or inject them. Bath salts are very new compared to other stimulants, and are often considered a more affordable version. So far, the side effects have been extreme, including paranoia, hallucinations, extreme agitation, and violent behavior.

Stimulant Abuse & Addiction

Addiction to stimulants can sometimes be difficult to detect but some of the warning signs are:

  • Increased body temperature
  • Euphoria
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Dry mouth
  • Faster breathing
  • Dilated pupils
  • Increased energy and alertness
  • Less Tiredness
  • Decreased appetite

Even in the short term, stimulants can have devastating side effects:

  • Cardiovascular system failure
  • Hostility or paranoia
  • Irregular or increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Heightened sense of well-being
  • Loss of appetite
  • Increased respiration
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Palpitations
  • Altered sexual behavior
  • Tremor/twitching of small muscles
  • Release of social inhibitions

Long-term use of stimulants have devastating health effects, including:

  • Physiological and behavioral disorders
  • Pounding heartbeat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Mood or mental changes
  • Cardiac arrhythmias
  • Repetitive motor activity
  • Convulsions, coma, and death
  • Ulcers
  • Malnutrition
  • Mental illness
  • Skin disorders
  • Vitamin deficiency
  • Flush or pale skin
  • Loss of coordination and physical collapse

Withdrawal from Stimulants

When one has been heavily using stimulants they may be awake for long periods of time and will ultimately “crash.” They will become depressed and may sleep for hours or even days.

When they wake, the user will experience additional withdrawal symptoms, the most dangerous being severe depression to the point of suicidal thoughts and acts. This is why it’s critical to seek stimulate addiction recovery treatment for addiction instead of the addict trying to quit stimulants on their own.

Treatment Program

Each substance abuse situation is different. By seeking addiction treatment for your loved one, a qualified drug rehab center like ours can help find where the addiction began, address the causes and underlying issues and find a new lifestyle for future success and a long-term recovery.

Many stimulant addicts begin using their drug of choice as a way to cope with the pressures of life. Sometimes that is through a drug that helps with focus, and sometimes it with a drug that helps the addict escape. Here at Peaks Recovery, our treatment programs includes a life skills component; our clients hold jobs so they can learn to deal with life’s stresses in sobriety. This greatly enhances their long-term chances of avoiding relapse, and so does our aftercare program.

Contact us today to learn about your new beginning at our beautiful Colorado campus.