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Ice is a drug that stimulates the brain and nervous system. It is a type of amphetamine that is crystalline in appearance. It is also known as crystal methamphetamine, crystal meth, glass, shards and puff. Compared to other forms of amphetamines such as speed or baseice is the strongest form of methamphetamine.
Ice is manufactured from a range of base products, including common pharmaceutical drugs and household chemicals. Because of its illegal status, ice is made in uncontrolled ways and may include unknown or harmful ingredients.
Ice usually comes as small crystals. Other forms are a white or brown powder that has a strong smell and bitter taste. Ice is generally smoked or injected and the effects can be felt almost immediately. Depending on how it is used, effects usually start:. Although the effects of ice usually last up to 12 hours, sleep problems can occur for a few days after use.
There is no safe level of ice use. Any drug use is risky, and effects can vary from person to person and depend on factors such as:.
Using other drugs such as benzodiazepinescannabis and opioids to cope with coming down from ice may lead to a cycle of dependence where someone becomes reliant on all the drugs they use. A drug overdose is a medical emergency. You can still be in danger even if not all overdose symptoms are present. Ice overdose can lead to strokeheart attack and death. If you suspect an ice overdose, call triple zero for an ambulance immediately. If you become dependent on ice, you may need to take more to get the same effect.
You may also need ice just to get through everyday activities such as work, study or socialising. If you have been using ice for a long time, giving up can be a challenge. Your body and mind will need to adjust to functioning without the drug. If you decide to stop or cut down your ice use, you may experience some unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.
These usually occur at the start and settle after a week.
Most withdrawal symptoms disappear after 4 weeks. Recovery from ice is possible, however cravings can occur. These usually last up to 3 months. Other symptoms of ice use can persist for over 12 months. If you have any concerns about your health, contact your GP doctorcommunity health centre or a drug support service. Treatment options for drug use include:. Victoria has a few treatment and support services for people with ice dependence. These may be in a residential setting such as a supervised hospital stay or in the community using local services such as hospitals, GPs and community health services.
Some drug support services offer therapeutic day rehabilitation so you can work on your drug use while still at home. This involves structured day programs held over a certain period using approaches such as:. Families and loved ones can get support too. This has been produced in consultation with and approved by:. Content on this website is provided for information purposes only. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not in any way endorse or support such therapy, service, product or treatment and is not intended to replace advice from your doctor or other registered health professional.
The information and materials contained on this website are not intended to constitute a comprehensive guide concerning all aspects of the therapy, product or treatment described on the website. All users are urged to always seek advice from a registered health care professional for diagnosis and answers to their medical questions and to ascertain whether the particular therapy, service, product or treatment described on the website is suitable in their circumstances. The State of Victoria and the Department of Health shall not bear any liability for reliance by any user on the materials contained on this website.
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What is ice? How is ice used? How ice affects the body Symptoms of ice overdose Emergency first-aid for ice overdose Long-term effects of ice Withdrawal from ice Treatment for ice misuse Ice and the law Where to get help. Depending on how it is used, effects usually start: smoked immediate injected 15 to 30 seconds snorted 3 to 5 minutes swallowed 15 to 20 minutes Although the effects of ice usually last up to 12 hours, sleep problems can occur for a few days after use.
How ice affects the body There is no safe level of ice use. Any drug use is risky, and effects can vary from person to person and depend on factors such as: Amount and strength of the dose. Physical make-up and state of mind. Response to the drug for example, a first-time user may experience different effects to someone who has used it before. Whether it has been mixed with other drugs. Short-term effects of ice Ice acts rapidly and produces effects such as: enlarged pupils and dry mouth excessive sweating feelings of pleasure and confidence teeth grinding increased energy increased sex drive libido itching and scratching rapid heart rate and breathing reduced appetite nosebleeds and damage to the nasal passage from snorting.
Symptoms of ice overdose Ice overdose may occur if you: take a strong batch use a large amount of ice mix ice with other drugs — including over-the-counter and prescribed medications, alcoholheroin. Symptoms of ice overdose may include: racing heart and chest pain difficulty breathing fits or uncontrolled jerking agitation and confusion severe headache passing out or unconsciousness. Stay with the person until the ambulance arrives. Place the person on their side in the recovery position — they could be at risk of choking on their own vomit.
If the person starts vomiting, make sure they can still breathe — keep their airway clear. Give ambulance officers as much information as you can including what drugs they have taken and how much. If the drug came in a packet, give it to the ambulance officers.
Long-term effects of ice Long-term use of ice can cause symptoms such as: breathing difficulties trouble concentrating dry mouth and dental problems regular viral infections — colds or flu restless sleep stiff muscles weight loss. Long-term use can increase your risk of: depression and anxiety drug dependence financial, work and relationship problems heart and kidney problems ice psychosis — paranoia, hallucinations and unpredictable or violent behaviour stroke. Withdrawal from ice If you have been using ice for a long time, giving up can be a challenge. Symptoms of ice withdrawal include: aches and pains confusion and irritability depression and anxiety exhaustion increased appetite intense cravings for ice paranoia restless sleep and nightmares.
Ice cravings Recovery from ice is possible, however cravings can occur. Treatment for ice misuse Treatment options for drug use include: detoxification individual counselling group therapy. Peer support — or talking to people in similar situations — can also be helpful.
This involves structured day programs held over a certain period using approaches such as: cognitive behavioural therapy CBT individual and group counselling self-help peer support. Ice and the law Ice is an illegal drug. Penalties apply under federal and state laws for anyone who: Uses or keeps it in their possession. Supplies or sells it to another person this includes without their consent — such as drink spiking Drives under its influence.
Sells or possesses ice pipes applies in some states and territories, including Victoria. Where to get help In an emergency, always call triple zero Your GP doctor Emergency department of your nearest hospital Tel. Lee NIce age: who has used crystal meth — and why? Give feedback about this.
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