Amphetamines are commonly used to treat a handful of conditions, some of which include:
- Attention deficit disorder
- Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder
When taken as prescribed, risks associated with amphetamine use decrease considerably; however, the damaging effects of amphetamines tend to magnify the longer a person continues using this type of drug.
When used for recreational purposes, the effects of amphetamines all but destroy a person’s ability to function effectively in everyday life, while causing serious damage to brain and body functions in the process.
The effects of amphetamines place an ongoing strain on brain and body processes. With long-term use, brain and body structures start to breakdown, causing any number of physical and psychological problems to develop.
Amphetamine’s Damaging Effects
The chemical make-up of amphetamine drugs enables them easy access to brain and central nervous system processes. In effect, the effects of amphetamines speed up the chemical processes that regulate the brain and central nervous system.
Areas affected by amphetamine drug effects include:
- Sleep regulation processes
- Impulse control
- Logic and reasoning functions
- Emotional balance
- Heart rate
- Blood pressure
With continued use, amphetamine effects cause chemical imbalances to develop in the brain. These imbalances can have a domino effect in terms of impairing brain and central nervous system functions.
Long-Term Health Effects
Over time, the bodily processes affected by amphetamine effects become overworked and start to breakdown. According to the Institute for Substance Abuse Treatment Evaluation, ongoing increases in blood pressure rates cause blood vessel and heart linings to wear down from overuse. This type of damage can place a person at increased risk of heart attack, stroke and heart disease.
The effects of amphetamines on the body’s digestive and metabolism processes can be just as damaging leaving a person in an overall state of malnutrition.
Frontal Lobe Damage
According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, the long-term effects of amphetamines can cause widespread damage to the brain’s frontal lobe regions. This area of the brain regulates cognitive functions, such as:
- Learning processes
- Logic and reasoning
- The ability to feel empathy for others
Once the frontal lobe regions start to deteriorate, a person will start to develop any number of psychological conditions that greatly impair his or her ability function in everyday life.
According to the National Center of Biotechnology Information, the long-term effects of amphetamines can cause one or more of the following conditions to develop over time:
- Violent behavior displays
- Anxiety disorders
- Antisocial personality disorder
- Bouts of rage
- Psychotic episodes
- Persistent fear and/or fright
The brain chemical imbalances resulting from the effects of amphetamines create an environment where addiction can easily take root. As chemical imbalances skew further and further out of sync, the brain eventually relinquishes its regulatory control over to the effects of the drug.
Over time, chemical imbalances alter how a person thinks as well as his or her motivations throughout the day. Before long, a person’s actions and behaviors will center on getting and using amphetamines to the point where he or she is living a drug-centered lifestyle.