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Addiction to Drugs/meth counteraction


Is there anything someone can do to counteract the effects of meth? Other than other drugs?
Thank you very mucb

Hi Rachel,

Thanks for your question.  It is difficult to answer directly without specifically knowing which effects you mean.  I am assuming you mean methamphetamine not methadone also.  The effects of methamphetamine are pretty broad, and there are effects while you are on it, and the effects that happen when it is wearing off or you are 'coming down'.  People on methamphetamine usually feel very alert and awake as well as some level of euphoria (depends on how much) and increased confidence.  The less pleasant side effects are not being able to sleep afterwards, teeth grinding, mental health problems (hallucinations, paranoia), lack of appetite etc.  Many people choose to take benzos such as diazepam so they can wind down and sleep, but as you alluded to, these are not the best option unless someone is extremely unwell (they are sometimes used by hospitals when someone is mentally unwell from too much).  

For non-drug related alternatives we would suggest the same things that would normally be used as an alternative to benzodiazepines.  These are things like relaxation, mindfulness, sleep hygiene.  I have searched a few sites and found this one to be quite good for relaxation strategies -   However, as opposed to being use for day to day stress, they are trying to fight a powerful drug and this can be a challenge.  Slow breathing techniques are a good bet as they can relax you when you are feeling quite wired and hyper, but again it will depend on how much meth you have used.  The easiest one is to sit in a quiet place, close your eyes, and breath in through your nose while counting to 3 in your head, then holding the breath for 2 seconds, then breathing out through your mouth for 3 seconds.  This can also slow your heart rate which is often affected by meth use.

I hope that goes some way to help, but if you would like to give me some specific effects I might be able to be more specific in my answer.  Please don't hesitate to ask me again.

Take care and stay safe,


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I am a psychologist committed to Harm reduction, a philosophy that acknowledges people will continue to use drugs despite all of the effort put into stopping it (case in point - US government drug war ... trillions of dollars spent fighting and more people using). I advocate to support people who use drugs by reducing the harms associated with their use through needle and syringe programs (NSP), advocating for drug law reform, non-judgmental health services and reducing the stigma associated with drugs. I have worked in harm reduction in Australia (NSP, primary health care, drop in centre) for 10 years and also have 18 months managing a service providing care coordination for people with multiple and complex problems. I spent two years living and working in Cambodia as a Harm Reduction Advisor for a local Khmer NGO, primarily focusing on methamphetamine use. Now I am back in Australia and have worked in a prison providing drug treatment and currently work as a psychologist in a dual diagnosis service (for people with mental health and substance use problems). I have a Masters in Clinical Psychology so can also answer questions around mental health and drug use. Happy to answer questions about blood borne viruses such as HIV and hepatitis C, questions about opiates, amphetamines, cocaine, benzos and other substances. Questions about treatment (particulary methadone and buprenorphine). Questions about harm reduction and why it is the best approach. I will try to answer questions about drug tests. I DO NOT JUDGE PEOPLE NEGATIVELY DUE TO THEIR DRUG USE, AND DON'T DEMAND PEOPLE MARCH STRAIGHT OFF TO REHAB! If anyone has taken a sip of a coffee, or drunk a beer, then ... well we are all drug users, and I don't think we are going to see an end to it! Deal with the real.


Worked in the field in Australia and Cambodia for 15 years. Psychologist with Clinical Masters. Two significant research projects on drug use (one on HIV risk and its link with trauma and one on drug related stigma). Presentation at two international conferences and two Australian conferences.

Registered as a psychologist with the Australian Health Practitioners Registration Agency.

Conference proceedings - IHRC 2004 (Chiang Mai), 2005 (Melbourne) & 2010 (Bangkok). Anex Conference 2005 (Melbourne) Stigma-Pleasure-Practice conference 2006 (Sydney).

Bachelor of Arts (Humanities), Bachelor of Psychology (Honours), Masters of Psychology (Clinical). And a multitude of training courses including advanced first aid, pre & post test counselling accreditation for HIV, significant amount of training on hepatitis C, etc.

Awards and Honors
Have presented at international conferences including the International Harm Reduction Conferences in Chiang Mai Thailand; Melbourne, Australia and Bangkok, Thailand. Also national conferences in Sydney and Melbourne Australia.

Past/Present Clients
I maintain confidentiality about my clients.

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