Methamphetamine Fact Sheet


  Methamphetamine Fact Sheet

Coast to Forest Resources

Thank you for exploring our fact sheet series. To learn more about substance use and mental health, check out our other fact sheets. To find local resources, check out the Coast to Forest County-Specific Resource Guides. For a variety of national and state-focused resources, please visit our Helplines & Practical Tools page.

What is Methamphetamine?

  • Methamphetamine is an extremely addictive man-made stimulant1

  • In 2020, 2.6 million people ages 12+ reported using Methamphetamine at least once2 

  • From 2019-2020 Oregon had the highest rate of methamphetamine use in the United States3 

  • In Oregon, methamphetamine is involved in 49% of overdose deaths4 

Intended use

  • Known as Desoxyn®, it has limited approved usage for ADHD and weight loss treatments1

Common names

  • Chalk, Crank, Crystal, Glass, Ice, Meth, Shards, and Speed2 


  • Ground white powder that is snorted up the nose

  • Pill/tablet

  • Dissolved powder that is injected into the bloodstream2 

  • Blue crystals that can be smoked1

How Methamphetamine works

  • Consumption is believed to release a high level of dopamine into parts of the brain responsible for feeling and pleasure regulation

  • When smoked or injected it results in a short, intense rush1

  • When snorted or taken orally it results in a longer high1 

Short term health effects

  • Decreased fatigue, hyperthermia, increased blood pressure, focus, physical activity, and wakefulness; loss of appetite, rapid breathing, and rapid or irregular heartbeat2

Long term health effects

  • Addiction, aggressive and/or violent behavior, changes in the brain's structure and/or function, insomnia, impaired verbal learning, loss of memory, psychosis (paranoia, hallucinations, repetitive motor functions), reduced motor speed, skin sores, and tooth decay2 


  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Intense cravings1

Given the symptoms of withdrawal, a person may need medical supervision to ensure their safety during the process.5


  • High doses can result in stroke, heart attack, severe organ problems from hyperthermia, and ultimately death1

Addiction treatment

  • Behavioral therapies such as CBT or Contingency Management1 

  • Currently there are no medications specifically designed for the treatment of Methamphetamine withdrawal, but such medications are in development1


  1. Methamphetamine Research Report  

  2. Methamphetamine - Drug Fact Sheet  

  3. 2019-2020 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Model-Based Prevalence Estimates (50 States and the District of Columbia)  

  4. Unintentional Drug Overdose in Oregon: The Current and Potential Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic  

  5. Withdrawal  


This fact sheet was developed by the Oregon State University Coast to Forest team, a collaboration of the College of Health, OSU Center for Health Innovation and OSU Extension Service Family & Community Health program. We would like to thank the H 310 Health Field Experience students for their contributions.

For more information and to explore local resources, check out the Coast to Forest County-Specific Resource Guides.