Your Brain on Meth

Images are powerful – these ones especially. If you’ve ever used meth or have someone close to you that uses and wondered why meth can cause an inherent ability to just stop caring about things, maybe this will help explain. This is a photo of a SPECTscan done on a 28 year old “normal” woman’s brain (left) and a 28 year old meth user’s brain (right). A SPECTscan measures the amount of blood flow to tissues in the body.

Meth brain scan

The subject of this image used meth heavily for eight years – at 28 she’s got visible brain damage. At a glance you can see that areas are literally hollow or inactive. From my research on the subject I was able to glean the fact that meth literally eats away your brain. This plays a big part in the reason why meth users do things that can defy logic. They can effectively lose the part of the brain that would normally be the system of rationale checks and balances. Compounding the problem is the dire need to get high and in chasing that high there is no need for logic; because nothing else matters.

Meth brain scan

The photo above is another SPECTscan of a meth user (details of the subject are unknown) that shows the red areas as parts of the brain that 5% or more or the tissues are actually dead.

There is hope.

These images look scary and are shocking if you don’t know what effect meth has on the brain. There are studies proving that meth can certainly cause irreversible brain damage; however many studies using the same SPECTscan technology show that after prolonged abstinence from meth, areas of the brain can actually reconnect. The dead areas seen in the images can actually be revitalized as the brain forms new pathways and connections.

The human body absolutely amazes me.

Images provided courtesy of Dr. Daniel Amen. For more SPECTscan images from Dr. Daniel Amen – click here.

114 thoughts on “Your Brain on Meth

  1. Josh you just keep thinking that way and we all will have on eless addict alive in this world. No loss there. The body is made of all organic matter. When none-organic matter is intoduced into the human body, it is going to react one way or another. In this case I have seen over and over the effects of meth on the human body. Your stament that meth is good. Shows just how stupid this nations youth have become. Sad sad state of affairs.

  2. You obviously have no idea who Christ is, what his purpose in our lives is, and why the things WE as people do to ourselves, our enviroment, nearly everything around us, humans have destroyed in one way or another. God/Christ did not cause or allow any of these thing to occur. Human suffering is brought on either by human’s actions. God gave us free will to choose what we do and how we live. Much of the disease and sickness in this world is caused by man’s foolishness and stupidity. Birth defects and other sicknesses can be directly linked to much of the pharmacuticals we use, have found their way into our water supply, mercury found in vaccinations given to babies at birth causes much of gthe health issues children get at early ages and later on in life. GMO’s another cause of poor health and sickness. The list goes on. Christ/God is not responsible for these things. Before you go dissing on our creator, open your eyes, become educated to truths, realize that only good come from God/Christ.All else comes from Lucifer, and his using people at His will to accomplish his works on earth, which is destroy all that God has created.

  3. Lee Ann, you need to first grow up, second become educated, thirdly, Go stand in a mirror and ask yourself a number of questions, like who am I to say these nasty things to or about others. Little girl, you are sorely mislead.

  4. speaking the truth brotherman
    think about it
    why would we lie to you
    and
    why would meth lie to you
    NEURONS THAT FIRE TOGETHER WIRE TOGETHER MOTHERFUCKER
    I’m three days abstinent from banging

  5. My wife of 14 years started doing meth. To the point in her addiction that she abandoned our two children in a Mc Donalds 90 miles from our house to get dope. After 2 hrs by themselves at the ages of 3 and 7 a police man came in and after 2 more hours on site she never showed up.
    The police were able to get a hold of me and i went to sacramento and recovered my boys. Deep in distress they ran to me and I’ve never let go.
    After 3 years their mom called me and said she wanted to talk to her boys.
    now ages 6 and 10 they are aware of the reality that she could not choose them cause of the addiction to the drugs and alcohol.
    she has severe brain damage from the drugs and in a very obvious and sad result of severe brain damage. Talking to people not there. Conversations of absolute non sense with herself. A behavior of irrational behavior. Sleeping with who ever she can to trade herself for the drug. Trapped like in a jail cell.
    her life is over while she still breathes. This asshole who says meth is great and causes no damage is literally the same scum that turned her on to it.
    so she now lives in a psych ward and can’t deal with any realm of normal life.
    3 years is what it took to destroy the most beautiful woman i ever met.
    MAY ALL YOU SCUM MOTHER FUCKED METH DEALERS GET A BAD BATCH AND KILL YOU INSTANTLY…….

  6. Right on, man. I hope you’re doing well. Keep up the great work, and if you fall, get back up again as many times as needed to kick its ass. You can do it.

  7. I am so happy to hear that you and your husband were able to beat the beast and stay together with help from the grace of God. Right on. God bless you for sharing your message of hope.

  8. You have to call upon his power when you are the most weak because you can’t do it yourself. If you could, you would have already. Trudge through the hell of getting and staying clean and you will get to the bright other side. Trust me. I’ve seen it. My dad was a 15+ year user and I had 20 good years with him before God called him home, something I never would have done without God in his life. Read the Bible until it makes sense and never hesitate to pray. Best of luck to you.

  9. Don’t forget to exercise regularly and keep your diet clean. Exercise is one of the few activities that you can do to stimulate dopamine channel growth in the brain after doing massive damage.

  10. Exercise regularly, if you can. It really does help, and know that if you hang on through the gray consistently, the colors will come back naturally over time. It won’t be all at once, but you’ll be able to look back and then realize how far you’ve come in a good way.

  11. Timely discussion – Incidentally , you need to fill out a Acord 37 ,
    my business partner saw a template version here http://goo.gl/JdziKm.

  12. OK I hope I don’t get thrown on the cross for this but being one that has used massive amounts of both heroin and crystal meth (its interesting not many people note poly drug abuse as I personally existed during my long stay in Huntington Beach alongside other addicts that literally ALL used either heroin or benzos alongside crystal meth) Now that may be besides the point but I know myself personally spent years half a decade living with my girlfriend injecting and smoking both meth and heroin. I also was employed as a personal trainer during this time. NOW although the heroin was a daily necessity the meth was not. I started out strictly injecting it at high doses never the less in the beginning but near the end as my veins all ran and hid form me I resorted to smoking it. I would generally use for multiple days at a time without sleeping and then after 3-4 days I would administer a shot of heroin and pass out/crash for around 12 hours. (mind you I would have to schedule my crashes around days I didn’t have to train my clients) Now being someone that has EXPERIENCED for YEARS consistent heavy usage of the drug my stance is neither pro nor against the drug necessarily. I simply want to dispel some myths surrounding the drug but not without also verifying some of the statements surrounding the evils of the drug. To begin, the physical effects meth has on the body are ALMOST entirely dependent on how you choose to carry on living. I will boast that I stand currently presenting myself as attractive, muscular, clear skin, good teeth…etc the point I’m trying to make is that you would never know i used crystal meth heavily by just looking at me. (I mean I am a personal trainer that needs to practice what I preach and look the part to my clients) now the insides of my body are a different story than my outward appearance. My drug use has affected my organs in a negative manner as my kidneys have been damaged and my liver enzymes are elevated (to the layman elevated enzymes means my liver is damaged and working extra hard to clear my body of the toxins present) SO for the physical effects your appearance and your meth use have almost no correlation, but what does affect your appearance are the secondary effects you may do to yourself due to how meth makes most act. Many people disregard their hygene while high, it is hard to sleep while high so that affects your appearance and it is hard to eat while high so many will lose weight. ALL THIS CAN BE COUNTERED THOUGH WITH SELF AWARENESS AND SOME DISCIPLINE. The affects on your organs is a different story. If you choose to use you will encounter organ damage that is impossible to avoid. So most people are right and wrong at the same time when they make their assertions. On to the effects on the brain. Yes, after a binge I would feel a little spacey and not on point (dumber if you will) but that would pass after a few days. Now I’m not saying the meth wasn’t doing damage. I just chose to combat the negative cognitive effects through use of supplementation. I would consume fish oil which has DHA that helps with your brains neuroplasticity or ability to recover from the nuerotoxicity caused by the meth. I also took Ginkgo Biloba and Vincopotene both which increase blood flow to the brain (another touted negative effect meth has on the brain) those are just a few of my supplements that made up my arsenal. The point of saying this is that even though I have used meth heavily I have also incorporated these nootropics to counter the negative cognitive decline. I’m going on purely how I feel that I can operate on an intellectual level and can verify I do not have any deficits due to my use aside from the immediate following few days after a binge. If anyone has taken the time to read this comment up to this point let me sum up my stance on the drug…YES i have noticed some problems associated with my use NO i have not turned into some meth tweaker zombie unable of any possible recovery. Not due to any particular reason other than perhaps my choice to move, I have not smoked or injected and crystal meth in about 4 months. There may have been some facets of damage that I more slowly recovered from but I can say at this point in time other than my organ damage which is slowly recovering as well, I never would have even been able to tell I had just a mere 4 months ago been a heavy user for years. All my executive cognitive functioning seems to be working at my normal capacity. I am even studying to get my certificate in database development which utilizes the programming language SQL. I’m not too sure I would be able to learn this dense information if the myths were true and I had as they say burned holes in my brain. So ill end by saying meth is nor good nor bad it has its positives and it has its negatives the negatives have been highly exaggerated let me say but none the less they do exist. I am not going to tell someone to use or not use meth but I will say that if one does choose to use know that there will be consequences but not nearly on the scale most people will try and tell you its like the damages due to meth is the great hyperbole of the past few decades in the war on drugs. Its always better to not use drugs than it is to use drugs but let me be the one to say it IS possible to use drugs in such a way that they dont reshape the person you were entirely. PS if I do get nailed to the cross by others for this comment know that I welcome the criticism but if anybody on this website were to meet me and interact with me for some time theyll find truth in the saying “you cant argue whats right in front of you” 🙂 happy (safe) tweaking to all who choose to partake!

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