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Found 4 results

  1. 8 Stages of Amphetamine Use/Abuse

    I found this online in another forum a while ago and recovered it recently. I've put it in the announcements because it feels more like a "sticky" than a discussion doc or question or personal tale. I found it really accurate. Hope it's helpful. Stage 1 of Amphetamine Use - During this stage, amphetamine will be at its hedonic peak; the pleasure of taking amphetamine will not get any higher from this point on. The most notable feelings are a "lovey" feeling, powerful euphoria, increased motivation, deep philosophical thinking, strong feelings of "lust", etc. Length of phase: 1-3 days with binge usage; 5-10 days with daily usage; About 5-15 uses total if used sparingly with atleast several days inbetween doses. Characteristic Effects of this Stage: - Powerful euphoria - Empathy and socialability - Overwhelming amount of increased motivation Stage 2 of Amphetamine Use - During this stage, the "lovey" and empathetic feelings of amphetamine quickly fade, although the "pleasurable" feelings of euphoria and increased motivation are still present. The decrease in empathetic feelings is likely responsible from a depletion of serotonergic vesicles. Most users note that it is impossible to transition back to "Stage 1" at this point, no matter how long of a break a person takes from amphetamine. This suggests that a permanent tolerance develops for the empathetic effects of the drug - whether this occurs from a psychological acclimation to the effects, or from physiological reasons, I don't know. This is the stage which doctors aim for when prescribing amphetamine for medicinal use with ADD and ADHD. This stage can be prolonged for quite some time (and if the dose is low enough, some medical professionals say that this phase can be prolonged indefinitely) this is assuming of course that the user continuously maintains an adequate amount of high quality sleep (7+ hours a night), proper nutrition, and a non-sedentary lifestyle. Length of Stage: 1-7 days with binge usage (note that binge usage is defined by immediately taking another dose once the effects of one dose wear off or begin to wear off, interrupting sleep in the process). 2 Weeks to 6+ Months if used daily (and maintaining a healthy lifestyle). Indefinitely if used sparingly (with 3-5+ days inbetween uses). Characteristic Effects of this Stage: - Increased Motivation - Slight Euphoria Stage 3 of Amphetamine Use, the "Tool" phase - At this point, most if not all empathetic effects of usage have diminished. This point is characterized by the fact that amphetamine becomes the sole motivator for tasks, hence the nickname "The Tool Phase" because amphetamine is now used as a Tool for accomplishment. The negative physiological effects (the "body load") become more prominent. Length of Stage: At this point, it is hard to define the length it will take to transition from one stage to the next. Some users will find that if they take breaks from their usage or just lower their dose, they can go backwards to earlier stages. Some binge users may even rapidly progress through the stages, possibly even skipping to the final ones or developing psychosis. Characteristic Effects of this stage: - Period of 'positive effects' and period of 'negative effects' from taking a dose begin to merge. (usually, if negative effects are present they only follow after the positive effects wear off) - The user needs amphetamine to stay at/above a baseline level of motivation, and when amphetamine is not in effect the user is below a baseline level of motivation. -In order for a task to be done effeciently, the user finds that they need to be on amphetamine. - The level of euphoria decreases to a point where it is no more significant than the level of euphoria which most people get from daily life without amphetamine. Stage 4 of Amphetamine Use, "The Decline" - The efficiency of amphetamine as a "Tool" begins to drop significantly, and this stage is characterized by the "comedown" (the period of negative effects after the drug begins to wear off) becoming much stronger. The "comedown" may even begin to merge in with the period of positive effects. At this point, the body load may begin to become painful. Characteristic Effects of this Stage: - Painful body load (Muscle Pain, High Blood Pressure, Inadequate Circulation, Dehydration, Malnutrition, deterioration of the skin and other tissues, etc). - Depression - Severe Anxiety Stage 5 of Amphetamine Use, The Procrastination - This Stage may or may not be experienced by amphetamine users. In this stage, the positive effects of amphetamine are almost absent if not completely gone, and the "coming up" of a dose of amphetamine is subsequently followed by an immediate barrage of negative effects (both physiological and psychological). The reason this phase is called "The Procrastination" is because the user forgets how unbearable the negative sensations are (due to amphetamine compromising the brain's ability to efficiently make memories, especially goal-orientated memories); by the next day, even though the user may have told himself to not take amphetamine, he takes amphetamine again anyways (due to the brain not being able to make a goal-orientated memory, the brain was unable to produce counter-motivation to stop the user from taking more amphetamine the next day). This might possibly be the most psychologically painful and strenuous phase for the amphetamine user, since he is unable to figure out why he keeps taking amphetamine even though he clearly knows it only causes him pain. Characteristic Effects: - Repeatedly taking amphetamine despite knowledge that it no longer gives the desired effects, and only causes negative effects. Stage 6 of Amphetamine Use, Irritability and Pessimism - This phase is characterized by extreme irritability. The user begins forgetting the drug is responsible for his negative feelings, and begins to blame things in the environment around them instead. The user begins to think that other people are responsible for how poorly he/she feels. The user might show hostility, or social withdrawal. The user also begins to develop an extremely pessimistic attitude towards life. Characteristic Effects of this Stage: - Acute Depression - Severe Anxiety - Irritability, even when the drug is out of the user's system - Psychosis - Inability to Sleep - Severe Restlessness - lack of willpower - Inability to find "the right choice of words" - Obsessive Thinking Stage 7 of Amphetamine use, Nihilism and Dissociation - During this phase, incidences of psychosis begin to emerge (if they haven't already) even if the drug user has been maintaining an adequate amount of sleep. The user usually becomes nihilistic, thinking that nothing in life matters or has meaning. Some users may even become solipsistic, which means they think that they are the only things which are real in the world. Solipsism is often accompanied by paranoia, or thinking that others only have the intention of harming the solipsistic individual. If the user had obtained any philosophical or metacognitive methods of thinking during the earlier stages of amphetamine use, those same metacognitive methods begin to eat away at the person's psyche. They feel as if they are helpless to do anything besides sit back and watch their mind become unravelled. Even if the user realizes that his irritable attitude towards other people isn't how he truly feels, he is unable to manage his irritability (most likely due to a complete diminishment of serotonin, as well as the brain's ability to make memories being compromised). The individual's ego may begin to deconstruct itself, and the user may have a feeling that they completely lack any willpower to do anything. This stage is also accompanied by a large amount of confusion. Characteristic Effects of this stage: - Confusion - Paranoia - Unbearable Depression and Anxiety - Delusions - Increased Incidences of Psychosis - Increasingly Painful Body Load - Lack of willpower - Cognition become confusing and incoherent. Users often claim things like their mind is "too loud", "jumping to false conclusions", or "doesn't make sense" and the user feels helpless to control this. - Panic Attacks become very prominent - Feelings of Deja Vu - If weight loss was experienced in beginning stages, it may come to a hault or even reverse into weight gain - Inability to experience pleasure - Akathisia - Feelings that an individual no longer has "free will" - Difficult to form coherent sentences and speak properly. Similar to "Clanging" or "Word Salad" experienced in schizophrenics. Stage 7b "Letting Go / Giving Up" - This stage is not always experienced, but in some instances after the user has experienced an excruciating and unbearable amount of anxiety and mental stress, he may experience a period of "Letting Go" in which the brain gives up on constructing/maintaining its deluded psychological structures. The negative effects of the drug temporarily fade, and the user has a "moment of peace". This temporary phase usually only lasts several hours (if not less) before the user returns to phase 7. Since the brain during this phase has completely abandoned any attempts to make goal orientated behaviour, the user may find it difficult (or simply not want to) to take care of themselves. However, during this phase, the user will find that they will actually be able to get to sleep, and they should take advantage of this temporary somnia to get sleep. I do not know what neurological mechanisms are responsible for this phase; it is almost as if it is the brain's last resort - to enter a careless and stressless stupor. Perhaps the brain releases endorphins in response to the unbearable anxiety? Characteristic Effects: - Stupor - Irresponsiveness - Carelessness - Ironically, if effects of "word salad" or "clanging" were experienced in stage 7, they are no longer as present in stage 7b. Stage 8, "The Stupor", Brain Damage - In this stage, amphetamine no longer gives effects, and the brain's desire for taking amphetamine (even if taking it has become a habit) begins to drop. As long as amphetamine use continues, the user makes no progress towards recovery of any sort. The individual is unresponsive and disconnected. Amphetamine has a tendency to make the user put too much effort into anything/everything, and this gives the brain not a single moment of psychological "rest" (where the individual doesn't think deeply). However, during this phase, it is quite the opposite - the individual's mind is in a prolonged state of resting and won't even follow through with the very act of thinking if the thought takes too much effort to think. During this phase, the user may have a steep decline in intelligence. Characteristic Effects: - Prolonged episodes of stupor and carelessness - Lethargy - Diminished Intelligence and mental efficiency - Irreversible Psychological Damage - Possible brain damage - The individual may develop a "permanent stuttering" which persists even after amphetamine has long since been ceased. - In a similar way that the stuttering develops, an individual may develop a possible permanent difficulty talking, using correct grammar and sentence structure, or expressing thoughts to others. In severe cases, this may even resemble a schizophrenic's clanging or word salad. - Essentially, the mind at this point is irreversibly compromised. The user's personality might have changed permanently. The individual may be much more easily irritated for the rest of his/her life. Cognitive functioning will never work the same as it used to. Although the user may make improvements and greatly recover, it will almost always seem like something "isn't right" in the mind, or that something is "missing". Individuals will still be able to lead fulfilling lives, and some may make amazing recoveries where they feel normal again like they did before they ever began using. Unfortunately, in severe cases, the individual may never be the same again.
  2. Losing Touch with Reality....Again

    Hi! I am new to the forum and am not ready to create 'My Story'. But I will soon. The condensed version is that I went to a psychiatrist in 2014 and because I am a master manipulator was able to obtain an ADHD diagnosis and a prescription for 3 x 30mg per day Adderall. So 90mg right out of the gate. The reason I wanted it? I watched a friend completely transform her life and her body with those oh so tasty orange footballs. She accomplished everything and more and lost thirty pounds. And, she gave 100% of the credit to her new best friend, Addie. I fell in love instantly with the drug about an hour after my first pill. I liken it to the first hit of crack I smoked. I thought I found heaven. Until I was pulled into Hell. Quickly. Addie was different, or so I thought. I did not have to roam the streets and put myself into extreme danger to get high. I was losing weight, I was working like a superhuman. My apartment has never been cleaner, down to the tile caulking (each tile, thank you very much!) in the entire bathroom. I, also, lost weight very fast. Though I knew I looked tired, I played off the whole 'heroine addicted model' role and loved every minute of it. From 2014 through today my dosage is approximately 90mg up to 120mg when I have pills. I come down using Xanax. I talk to myself, I do not go out of the house when I am high, I still do a ton of 'work' but it mainly consists of the equivalent of herding cats all day. My Master's degree program is going great because I can sit for hours and hours and study (I have a tendency to read out loud to myself at this point). I am pissed because it seems my body has adapted to knowing the substance is going to cause what it thinks to be starvation, so my body compensates for it. No more rapid weight loss...suck. Fast forward to 2017. I am losing touch with reality. I run out of pills very early in the month, and absolutely dread the crash that is going to take place, but now I look forward to it. If I can brace myself for a hard, painful landing, I can laugh again. I can watch my Sundance Doc Channel and enjoy lounging on the couch, remaining in one spot long enough to relax and take in the show from beginning to end. I sleep so well. I dream. (I never dream on Addie and only get four to six hours sleep max when I do my Addie Run). I want to break free of this cycle, but then again, I don't want to. I mean, I get three months worth of work done in the 15 days I have the pills, then rest for 15, then the cycle starts all over again with the next bottle. The party's over I am afraid....
  3. Hi all, New to the forum. Was prescribed Adderall for ADHD nearly two years ago, and I quit Adderall cold turkey 5 months ago today. Two months before I quit I started experiencing symptoms of psychosis on a 50 mg/day dose (I was also smoking copious amounts of marijuana and not getting enough sleep), but was in denial about the source of the psychosis until my live-in GF left (the day she moved out I quit - but unfortunately that was too late to salvage the relationship). I was hearing voices, having paranoid delusions, the works. The month after quitting was the worst - I was smoking tons of cigarettes and drinking energy drinks to try and stay functional, but ended up spiraling into an even worse psychosis, where the voices started getting even worse (louder) and I couldn't even think straight. A couple of months after that, although the worst of the symptoms faded, I was still having anxiety attacks along with not being able to think straight or focus properly, and I was still hearing voices as well. It got to the point where I ended up having to take a leave of absence from my graduate school program and now I'm a 28-year-old man back home not working living with my parents trying to recover from this. It's been two months since I moved back home (I'm hoping to return to my studies in September) and while I count myself fortunate to have the freedom / resources to live with my parents at my age until I recover, I have no idea when I'll get better. I still hear the voices at the edge of my hearing, thinking is really hard, and I have this weird pulsing/twitching in the middle of my forehead which pulses in time with the voices when I do hear them. I also sleep way too much, I'm constantly depressed and I have a hard time getting motivated to do much of anything other than work out, eat, and listlessly browse the Internet. I'm just wondering if anyone has ever experienced this long-term hearing of voices, difficulty thinking and complete lack of motivation - and if it ever fades. It's been five months and only slight improvements have occurred since December - I don't know if the voices are actually fading, or if I'm just getting used to them now. Often I find myself having a hard time finding the right word to describe a situation - I feel like my working vocabulary has been chopped in half. Things just don't feel right - and hearing voices is a constant reminder that my brain isn't working properly. I wonder if I've sustained permanent brain damage. Is this just who I am now? Is there no longer getting back to the pre-psychosis me - do I just have to accept that I'm going to hear voices and have a hard time thinking for the rest of my life? I'm just hoping that someone else has had a similar experience and then the voices ended up fading (God I hope they go away... I don't know how I'm going to live a normal life with them). I've seen a psychiatrist but they want to prescribe me Abilify or an antipsychotic and I am trying not to take any drugs period (I am taking some supplements but that's it) - I remember a time when I didn't hear voices and I certainly didn't need antipsychotics back then. Adderall has basically ruined my life. My career is probably shot (I was on track to get my PhD, but now I have to take 3 more classes if I can and leave with a master's, a huge gap on my resume, W's on my transcript and many doubts about whether I can cognitively perform at my job. I'm thinking about switching careers which will be tough at age 28 but I might have to if I can't find a job with my unorthodoxically-obtained MS). I don't know if I'll ever be able to get into a romantic relationship again, and I still obsess over my ex from time to time (even though I've burned that bridge with my pre and post-breakup behavior, I'm really not over her, especially since the voices will occasionally remind me that she's never coming back, which really sucks). I have no idea what I'm doing with my life and I have no idea when I'll get better. I just want to be normal again... everything that used to define who I was, my wit, my sense of humor, my intelligence, my sociability - seems like it's vanished. You know what's crazy? Sometimes I think that if I take the Adderall or another stimulant again, maybe I'll be able to think straight - but that's crazy talk, right? As if taking Adderall again would help me think straight when that's what caused my psychosis in the first place. I don't know. Anyway thanks for reading and hopefully someone's had some experience with this... frankly my biggest concern is... when will the voices go away???
  4. Hello All, I am here looking for information in how to help a friend. She is prescribed 50-60mg of Adderall a day. She told me that she takes 60-90mg a day. I believe that she takes an upwards of 90-120 mg per day. For the past few months, she has become extremely paranoid and believed that people were watching her. She confided in me a few months ago and I thought that she could actually be being watched. I knew she was on Adderall, but had no idea that this would be the root of the problem. My friend told me that she began noticing that she began seeing the same cars at the same places on a daily basis. She believed that she was being watched by the FBI or state police. My friend has always been known as a pill popper and so I didn't put it past her that she could have been involved in some sort of criminal drug activity and maybe she was being watched. She told me that she hasn't done anything illegalin a long time. I originally told my friend to make a record of what she saw, write down plates, cars, take pictures etc. Months have gone by and she has been able to give me nothing legitimate in regards of proof that she's being watched, but her paranoia has only gotten worse. She now believes her home is bugged, her phone is bugged and that she can actually hear two distinct different voices. She will actually talk to the voices and gets mad when I can't hear the voices while I'm at her home. She has torn her home apart and has found what she believes to be bugs. I've looked at her the so called bugs and they appear to be just be old electronics, batteries, etc. I have tried to explain to her that the FBI or any law enforcement agency would not bug her home and even if they did, she wouldn't be able to actually hear anything out of the bugs. She insists that the people must have messed up when they put the bugs in her house. A week ago it reached a breaking point when she went to the police station to show them the bugs. They thought she was crazy and called her family to come get her. My friend's family doesn't know what to do. They don't understand what is going on and initially I didn't either. I began to reach adderall and quickly found several stories that sounded similar to my friend. I later mentioned the idea to my friend that adderall could possibly be the problem and that maybe she needed help. She became angry and stormed off screaming that no one believes her, etc. A few days later, I told my friend that I would have someone do a bug sweep of her home if that would help her. During this conversation, she admitted to me that the adderall did make her more paranoid and increased her anxiety. I asked her to please just cut down on the adderall to see if that helped any with her paranoia. She said she would. I am going to have someone do a bug sweep of her home just to ease her mind. After the bug sweep comes back with nothing, how do I approach her about the Adderall being the cause and her getting help? Any suggestions/incite would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.