National Meth Awareness Day is observed every November 30 to raise awareness about the adverse effects of meth abuse on individuals, families, and communities and to offer treatment options for meth addicts. Did you know that National Meth Awareness Day is an official day, proclaimed by President George W. Bush in 2006? Methamphetamine, also known as crystal meth and crank, is a highly effective stimulant that affects the central nervous system. The drug is most popular among young adults and regulars at dance clubs and parties. Meth is the second most abused illegal drug in the world. The drug is known to cause brain damage, violent behavior, and increased blood pressure. However, meth has benefits if used under the guidance of a medical doctor.
History of National Meth Awareness Day
Many people may think drugs like methamphetamine, or crystal meth, are relatively new to the scene. Their existence can be traced over 100 years ago. In 1887, Romanian chemist Lazăr Edeleanu synthesized amphetamine into methamphetamine in Germany, becoming the first person to do that. He named the drug ‘phenylisopropylamine.’
Later, in 1893, Japanese chemist Nagai Nagayoshi synthesized methamphetamine from ephedrine, an active chemical in the ephedra plant. This plant has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 5,000 years. In 1919, Japanese pharmacologist Akira Ogata streamlined the process of making methamphetamine using red phosphorus and iodine. That became the world’s first crystal meth.
In 1938, the German pharmaceutical company, Temmler, began producing methamphetamine on a large scale as a nonprescription drug called Pervitin. During World War II, German soldiers widely used the drug to increase endurance and reduce fatigue. Japanese, U.S., and British military personnel were also reported to have used the drug.
The military began cutting back on its usage in 1940 due to its adverse side effects. In the 1950s, methamphetamine was a chemical in a new drug called Obetrol. The drug was produced by Obetrol Pharmaceuticals, which marketed it to treat obesity. It later evolved into a diet pill due to its psychological and stimulant effects in the 1950s and 1960s.
As the addictive properties of the drug became public knowledge, the authorities began clamping down on the production and distribution of methamphetamine. In the 1970s, methamphetamine became a ‘schedule II controlled substance’ under the Controlled Substance Act.
Around the early 1990s and early 2000s, crystal meth usage exploded in the United States, with more than 5% of the U.S. adult population using it. According to the United Nations, in 2006, it became the most abused hard drug on Earth. In the same year, President George W. Bush proclaimed November 30 as National Meth Awareness Day.
National Meth Awareness Day timeline
President George W. Bush proclaims November 30 as National Meth Awareness Day.
The U.S. government makes methamphetamine a “schedule II controlled substance” under the Controlled Substance Act.
Temmler markets methamphetamine Pervitin to the military as an energy pill.
Japanese pharmacologist Akira Ogata creates methamphetamine using red phosphorus and iodine.
National Meth Awareness Day FAQs
What are the long-term effects of using meth?
Long-term use of meth can lead to permanent brain damage, high blood pressure, severe dental problems, liver and kidney damage, and insomnia.
Can methamphetamine be made from both ephedrine and pseudoephedrine?
Illegally manufactured meth is made by combining ephedrine or pseudoephedrine with other chemicals that are mostly poisonous or highly flammable.
What's the chemical that makes you happy?
The chemical is dopamine.
How to Observe National Meth Awareness Day
Host an awareness event
If your organization is focused on drug abuse, you can use National Meth Awareness Day to organize a program to educate people about its misuse and possible treatment options. The common trend is to have Twitter Spaces to reach as many people as possible and allow attendees to share their thoughts and opinions. You can also go beyond that to host an event in your local community or even conduct a door-to-door awareness program.
Help someone through meth addiction
If your loved one or someone you know is a meth addict, you can help them find their way out of the addiction. First, you need to research the signs of meth addiction. Therapist directories like Psychology Today can also provide you with a list of local treatment providers. You can also do research on Google for addiction therapists near you. Once you start the process of assisting them to recover, ensure you stick to the end to avoid relapse.
Talk about meth addiction on social media
If you have a good enough presence on social media, use your account to educate your friends or followers on meth abuse. You can as well create a podcast or post a video on YouTube in contribution to National Meth Awareness Day.
5 Unknown Facts About Addictive Substances
The cost to the country
Alcohol and drug addiction cost the United States economy about $600 billion every year.
The susceptible age group
People between the ages of 18 and 25 years are more likely to use addictive drugs.
Population drug addicts
About 40 million Americans between the ages of 12 and above are struggling with an addiction to a substance.
Population of meth addicts
Close to one million Americans are addicted to meth.
Depression and drug abuse
About 20% of Americans with depression or anxiety disorder also have a substance use disorder.
Why National Meth Awareness Day is Important
Educates the public about meth
The focus of National Meth Awareness Day is to sensitize the American population about the dangers of meth misuse to themselves, their families, and communities. Events, forums, and awareness campaigns conducted on that day since it was established in 2006 have helped make the public more knowledgeable about meth abuse and how to manage it.
It reduces cases of meth abuse
Through National Meth Awareness Day initiatives, more and more people are becoming aware of the health, mental and social consequences of meth abuse. This has helped dissuade potential users, especially young people, from taking the drug.
It promotes the well-being of meth addicts
One of the key initiatives during National Meth Awareness Day is providing treatment options for meth users. Also, clinics, rehabilitation centers, and drug abuse organizations offer free consultations on that day for individuals seeking solutions to their meth addiction.
National Meth Awareness Day dates