Methamphetamine is a synthetic drug with more rapid and lasting effects than amphetamine. It is used illegally as a stimulant and as a prescription drug to treat narcolepsy and maintain blood pressure.
The use and production of methamphetamine is becoming a huge problem in the U.S. This drug is illegal and highly addictive. Common names for the drug are ice, meth, speed, crank, quartz, crystal and poor man’s cocaine. Using methamphetamine can cause major health issues as well as serious problems to your mouth and teeth.
The “high” from meth last for about 12 hours. During that time, your body’s salivary glands diminish causing a dry- mouth feeling. This state is commonly referred to as “meth mouth”. Without the aided production from your salivary glands, the acids on your teeth will destroy the tooth enamel which in turn leads to tooth decay. It is also reported by users, while using meth, it is common to consume high calorie carbonated drinks and foods and tooth grinding and clenching occurs. This in turn compounds the problems.
A meth user will see serious affects related to their teeth in a short period of time. The ADA stated users can go from having a sparkling smile to one of decay and tooth loss in about a year.
So what can your dentist do? Without the user discontinuing the use of the drug, the damage will continue to diminish a person’s teeth. The damage can not be addressed until that first step is taken. You need the production of your salivary glands to stop the damage and while using, that would be impossible.
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