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Author Topic: Getting the Most Out of Methamphetamine  (Read 10694 times)

Offline Chip (OP)

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« on: August 23, 2016, 01:53:16 PM »

note: it takes about 10 days for one's neurotransmitters to get back up to baseline BUT a week will suffice.

Using Meth—Getting the Most Out of It

Lately, there have been a few posters I have replied to who don’t actually know how meth works. If you don’t have a basic understanding of what’s going on in your body, you will waste it when you really can’t get any higher, cause damage with an overdose and in so doing, also create a dependency by trying to force a high.

Reading this may save you money, give you a better high, do less damage to your body, and hopefully keep you from becoming addicted or better manage an addiction. I’ve left out some details and made a few generalizations to keep this as simple to understand as I can.

Methamphetamine directly affects dopamine release. Dopamine is an organic chemical in the brain that works with two other chemicals, serotonin and norepinephrine. All affect our moods, our actions, our outlook on life—our wants and needs. When dopamine is released into the brain as a neurotransmitter, it seeks out dopamine receptors in different areas of the brain. When the dopamine is activated at these points, it affects motor control, motivation, arousal and reward, including sexual gratification.

When you get an initial rush, this is when a much higher release of dopamine (hundreds of times more than normal) saturates the dopamine receptors. The brain is overwhelmed trying to process this massive amount of a potent chemical. After the receptors adjust to this onslaught, the rush is over, but it continues to give you a high. This is the main mechanism.

What happens after this hit or shot (especially noticeable with an IV injection), the dopamine receptors realize you have too much dopamine at work and send some of the dopamine back to the neurotransmitters for later use. The dopamine pathways also shut down, making it impossible to send more dopamine to the receptors. This leaves less dopamine in the brain before it has time to manufacture more and the dopamine pathways open up again.

As the high lessens, users begin thinking they want the stimulation of the initial high and re-dose. The signal goes out again to release dopamine, but there’s not as much in your brain as you had before. There’s not enough to release at one time to give you a rush, but the high goes back up to a degree.

If the booster still isn’t enough, more meth is used over and over, trying to get to the level of the initial high. This is when people start mentioning tolerance levels and become disappointed with their high. The truth is, you’ve run out of fuel (dopamine). At this point, the meth is being wasted and you are chasing a high that physically can’t be attained.

Because of the over stimulation of the dopamine receptors, some of them are trying to compensate and temporarily begin shutting down, cutting off availability of the active chemical. Over time, with a more than casual use of meth, the receptors will shut down for longer times, or if become damaged, permanently. It isn’t really a tolerance level that has changed. Parts of the brain simply aren’t working at the moment.

The only way to get another rush and a higher high is to stop using meth for a while and let the dopamine settle down and rebuild its stockpile. Depending on how much meth has been used up to this point will have a direct bearing on how long it takes for the brain to recover.

Because I want a good rush without too much expense, I want to wait a week until I know dopamine levels are down to about as low they can go to do their normal maintenance. Before my shot, I won’t take a hit off a pipe or do a line, as they will only release part of the dopamine and not leave enough to give me the best rush. I understand some people can’t wait this long, so they use more and more meth, thinking their “tolerance level is up,” trying to milk every last molecule of their dopamine out of the transmitters.

This increased usage creates what can be termed a vicious cycle of continually using more to get less. It develops into a mental craving and signals that addiction has begun. Methamphetamine first creates a mental addiction. When the mental addiction can’t be satisfied, the body responds by giving you physical signals, initiated by the brain to try to make contact with you. It’s a temper tantrum of sorts.

I can’t explain all of the side effects from using meth, but an important one is that a greater amount of dopamine in the system will shut down norepinephrine release. Anyone who is familiar with depression and has taken medication for it may be familiar with the terms “selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)” or “serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI).” Serotonin is actually a precursor to norepinephrine. You need the one to have the other. In any case, reduced amounts in the brain will cause a state of depression (slight or more severe) and brings on some of the unpleasant side effects evident in a comedown. It also acts as a vasoconstrictor, tightening veins to reduce blood flow. In some cases it brings on nausea.

Since methamphetamine is a stimulant it can greatly reduce the ability to sleep. Sleep deprivation can cause hallucinations and eventually psychoses. Before methamphetamine was taken off the over-the-counter market in the last century, it was the basis for the best diet pills created. It kills the appetite. There is also a tendency to become dehydrated while using it. Hunger and dehydration can do real damage to the body and if you recognize them, they are a warning that your consumption of meth has reached a dangerous level because you have not taken preventive care along the way during your high. (See The Meth Medicine Cabinet on how to manage this.)

Better understanding of what meth does to your body can also give you control over what you don’t want it to do.

Tolerance Levels Explained (source:

From the very first day I started using meth I heard people talking about their tolerance levels. “Man, my tolerance level is up. I need another shot.” Or, “Jeez, I’m gonna get off this shit so I can get my tolerance level down.” So, what does all this mean? What is a tolerance level?

Basically, it is how much your body will tolerate the drug you are using. It is a resistance level. If you do get the high you expect from a measured dose of meth (larger than the base level), then your resistance level is the same as before, or even lower. If you are disappointed with your high, then you say your tolerance level has risen. When it comes to mind, then you are analyzing how you feel after hitting your dose, and in reality, it is a perception. (It has to be a perception or approximation, because the psychoactive properties of meth start kicking in before the base level is actually achieved.)

No one studying tolerance levels can pinpoint anything, really, because there are so many variables associated with your own tolerance level. But, it is highly dependent on dosage, duration of use, and frequency of administration. Other factors include your body chemistry, differing ROAs (routes of administration), effectiveness of your ability to administer, strength of the product, your mood, and environmental factors.

How tolerance builds up: the more you use and how often you use it have a compounding effect. That’s because a residual amount of meth stays in the system. Depending on the above factors, meth starts breaking down in the body at variable rates, ranging from 5 to 12 hours until it reaches what is called a half life. It takes about the same amount of time to get to a quarter life, and so on, until its effects on the system become negligible.

What you used, say 15 hours ago, is still affecting you, but only at a 50% strength of what the full dose at ingestion gave you. If you re-dose the same amount at this point, you now have 150%, dosage-wise, affecting your body. You would think that it would take you higher—by 50%--and that’s what people believe and expect to happen. But it’s not the case.

Once you have started dosing, dopamine is being released in your brain from neurotransmitters and it sets off to finding neuroreceptors. As the neuroreceptors become saturated with dopamine, you receive your high. However, once the neuroreceptors have become fully saturated, there’s nowhere the dopamine can go, so it returns to the neurotransmitters for later use. You will feel yourself getting higher, but it ultimately makes you feel cheated, as the high isn’t what you expect.

That’s why we say, when you feel you’re not getting higher or only a fraction higher, stop using the drug, as you are only wasting it.

At this point, you’ve built up a higher tolerance level than you had 15 hours ago, using this example. The only way you can reduce that level is to stop trying to drive up your high. Stop using.

As you lay off using, the dopamine in the receptors begins to be used up and the high begins to wear off. Your head starts clearing up a bit as you reach lower levels that are still in your body. At this point, you could re-dose, but you cannot get the initial rush you had. And this is where you are certain your tolerance level has risen.

If you want your tolerance level to go down, two things must happen. One, you have to wait out the half life, the quarter life, eighth life and so on, until there is only a small or no amount of meth left in your system. The other thing is, you have to wait for your dopamine levels to rise, as your brain works to manufacture new dopamine.

When you decide to use meth again, if you are not returned to your previous level, you have not waited long enough, or a new batch of meth isn’t as strong as what you are used to. Your body chemistry may have changed due to lack of food, water, vitamins and other nutrients you may have skipped the last time you used. You may use a different ROA. Or, your mood is not the same. If you go into a session with a lack of sleep, irritability, frustration or other mood destabilizers, don’t expect the same effects. If you are going to use around different people or in different locations (environmental), it can also be a changer.

If you have been a regular user with few interruptions, your level of tolerance will keep rising until what ½ a gram did for you before can now only be matched by a gram. At this point you need to consider taking a break. Because of the residual effects of meth, don’t think a couple of days will do the trick. Think weeks, even a month or more.

The smarter users I have come across will do one or two shots, or smoke half a gram or a gram, or ingest—whatever their ROA and dosage they are used to—all in one session, then get away from it for a week. It is usually enough time flush the system and replenish dopamine, so next week’s high will be consistent with the one the week before.

There you have it, a best as possible explanation of something that can’t be fully explained. But there is enough information to be able to keep your tolerance level where you want it to be, move it up, or down.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2016, 02:05:09 PM by chipper »
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