What Are Meth Sores?
Meth skin sores are one of the most common and visible signs of meth addiction. They are essentially open sores on the skin that can appear when someone begins using Crystal Meth excessively over several weeks or months. It usually takes time for meth sores to show up, but small sores can begin to appear within days of using the drug repeatedly.
While the most visible meth sores appear on the face, chest, hands, and arms, they can actually appear anywhere on the body. It is also common for meth sores to appear near the mouth; these are usually referred to as “meth mouth sores.” One issue with identifying meth sores is that they can resemble regular acne. However, as meth sores worsen, they become open, inflamed wounds that also produce scabs as they begin to heal. As a result, it is easy for people to mistake even severe meth sores for a strong case of acne.
That said, meth sores tend to be itchier than regular acne sores, which means that people who have them will often scratch at the wounded areas. This can cause them to become irritated and even infected, making their appearance even more noticeable. Meth sores on arms are particularly sensitive to scratching, as they are easily reachable and can create great discomfort for frequent meth users.
In any case, meth face sores have become the quintessential sign of excessive meth use. Many anti-drug campaigns use before-and-after photos of meth addicts to show the destruction that meth can cause. While minor meth sores can go away after someone stops using meth, more severe sores can cause permanent damage to the face and body.
What Causes Meth Sores?
There’s not always one exact cause of meth sores. However, meth is a toxic substance that has negative physiological effects, so various elements of the drug can lead to meth sores. For example, sores around the mouth are often the result of burns from hot meth pipes. Alternatively, sores on other parts of the face and body can be the result of a weakened immune system, poor hygiene, infection, and persistent scratching — all of which are caused by regular meth abuse.
Additionally, the way in which someone consumes meth can affect the degree to which they get meth face and mouth sores. For example, many addicts choose to dissolve the drug in water and inject it directly into the bloodstream. This makes the drug water-soluble, allowing it to escape the body through pores in the skin like regular sweat. Since the face often excretes more sweat and oils than most other parts of the body, this means that many sores appear on the face as a result of toxic particles exiting the body through the pores, opening the door for further skin irritation and infection.
It’s also important to note one of the most common reasons that meth sores do not go away as easily as most other types of sores is formication. Formication is a psychological state in which a person feels as though insects are crawling on or underneath the skin. It is especially common for addicts to experience this feeling during meth hallucinations. Since the addict is not in a clear state of mind, they will try to scratch and pick at the “bugs.” Naturally, this can open existing sores even further, increasing the chances of infections and greatly delaying the healing process.
Lastly, increased usage of meth limits blood flow to the major blood vessels, making skin more dry and scaly in the process. Dry skin usually becomes itchy, increasing the desire to scratch and pick at the dry areas. If the scratching persists, it can lead to open meth sores that can take weeks or even months to fully heal.
What Are Meth Mites?
While you may think that meth mites are like a bed bug that attaches to meth addicts as a result of poor hygiene, they are actually non-existent (to a degree). Meth mites are not actual bugs, but the result of the meth hallucinations (formication) described above. When the hallucinations kick in, it is very common for meth addicts to feel and even “see” bugs living and crawling under their skin. Formication takes hold of multiple senses, both sight and touch, making it seem very real for the afflicted meth addict.
Naturally, continuous scratching and a “crawling” sensation under the skin from meth mites can lead to even more meth sores. This is one of the most frustrating symptoms of meth addiction, as it is difficult for meth addicts to fully express the discomfort and anxiety of formication to others. And since meth mites are not real bugs, it makes it seem as though the person is losing their mind when they are really just suffering from drug-induced hallucinations.
How To Get Rid Of Meth Sores
If meth sores are minor, they could go away on their own. However, the causes of meth sores always point to the same thing: continual meth use. Therefore, it is vital that someone addresses meth sores at the source and seeks out help to combat their meth addiction.
Since meth is extremely addictive, most addicts cannot quit on their own. They almost always require some form of drug rehab or residential drug treatment. This way, trained professionals can help addicts safely and effectively treat the underlying causes of their meth use and ultimately rid themselves of the negative physical effects of the drug. Fortunately, Prosperity Haven has the knowledge and expertise to help you or a loved one overcome your meth addiction.
Are you, your child, friend, coworker, parent, or spouse struggling with meth addiction? Are you looking for treatment options that target each patient’s specific needs? Finally, are you looking for a comprehensive inpatient meth rehab center that provides a wide range of effective treatment options? If so, feel free to contact the experts at Prosperity Haven to learn more.
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