If someone you know or love is using methamphetamine, the way that you react to this person can make a huge difference in whether or not he or she will seek or accept treatment. Because meth is so highly addictive, it can be more challenging to treat a meth user than an abuser of just about any other type of drug. Most experts share this point of view. However, the first step in helping a meth user is recognizing the signs of drug abuse.

If your loved one has changed his or her behavior significantly, appears to always be happy and talkative, is continuously active, has lost his appetite, or exhibits signs of nervousness and rapid eye movement, you might be observing a meth user. While it is generally agreed that early intervention has the best odds of success when treating a crystal meth abuser, you should never attempt to intervene or confront a user while he is high. However, if you can talk to your loved one when he or she is not high, your support can be invaluable in helping this user recognize that he or she has a drug problem. This can be the first step to getting your loved one into a drug treatment program.

When it comes to crystal meth abuse, a person is rarely able to stop using on his or her own. No level of willpower seems to be sufficient to fight the highly addictive nature of methamphetamine. For this reason, it is important that you be persistent in your efforts to get your loved one into a treatment program. Family member support is considered a very important component to successful drug treatment.

You have made a great deal of progress in treating meth addiction if you can get your loved one to not only recognize that he or she has a drug problem but also to accept treatment. The next step is to detoxify the user. This is the process of eliminating the drug from his system. This stage of treatment can take longer with meth than with other drugs because of the staying power of meth. Additionally, more of the drug gets into the user’s brain than with other drugs. The detox process should take place under medical care to ensure safety. This step is critical, because as long as there is meth in the user’s system, he will be craving the drug. This is the primary reason that most users are unable to quit on their own.

Once detoxified, the real drug treatment can begin. For best success, it is recommended that the drug abuser enter a residential rehab facility for several weeks in order to have the structure and support that will be necessary to escape the clutches of meth. Current research indicates that the most effective treatments for addiction to methamphetamine include behavior modification therapy to help the patient modify thinking, expectations, and coping skills for dealing with the stresses of daily life. There is no doubt that recovering from meth addiction is challenging, but it is not impossible.