What Are Amphetamines?

A class of drugs that stimulates the central nervous system and produces increased wakefulness and focus in the user.

First synthesized in 1887, amphetamines have a chemical structure closely resembling adrenaline and noradrenaline, stimulants produced by the human body. Its euphoric effects have made the drug popular among people who wish to stay awake for long periods of time, reduce tiredness, improve performance in sport, increase endurance or just to plain boost confidence.

The Basics

What it is, what does it look like, how is purity determined, how is it taken?

Amphetamines are drugs that mimic the effect that adrenalin has on the body. They are known as uppers, bennies, beans, speed, and crank. Amphetamines vary in appearance, from white pills to powder or crystals. This drug can be ingested orally, injected, sniffed, or smoked.  Learn more about the basics... of using amphetamines.

Effects of Amphetamines

What it does, the physical and mental effects while high, what happens in the brain, after-effects of using amphetamines.

Amphetamines can make a person feel energetic. Effects of amphetamines include a sense of well-being, and make the person feel more confident. This feeling can last for up to 12 hours, and some people continue to use to avoid coming down from the drug. Learn more about the effects... of doing amphetamines.

Amphetamine Dosage and Amounts Taken

How much amphetamine will cause an overdose? What is a lethal dose of the drug?

Amphetamine dosages vary, depending on the type of drug. When it is prescribed by a doctor, follow the instructions on the prescription precisely. Some users try to get a quicker "high" by crushing or chewing the amphetamines.

Dangers and Long-Term Effects of Amphetamine Abuse

Risk of overdose, increased blood pressure, what are the long term effects of use?

Long-term effects of amphetamine use include having to use a larger amount to get the same effect, as well as an increased strain on the heart. This type of drug increases blood pressure, and can put you at increased risk for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. Learn more about the dangers and long term effects... of amphetamine abuse.

Amphetamine Addiction and Tolerance

How addictive is it? Is addiction a myth? Do I have a problem? Signs and symptoms of amphetamine abuse and dependency

A person who is addicted to amphetamines can develop a tolerance for them very quickly. The addict continues to use to try to recreate the first, intense high they experienced while using the drug. A person addicted to amphetamines can have psychotic episodes while using. Learn more about amphetamine addiction... and the effects of long-term use.

Amphetamine Overdose

What are the signs of an overdose? What to do if you spot symptoms of an amphetamine overdose.

A person who has overdosed in amphetamines will experience rapid heartbeat, restlessness, and shaking. During an amphetamine overdose, the person may also become paranoid, confused, delusional or have seizures.

If you or someone you are with show signs of a drug overdose, calling your local emergency line is recommended. Our drug emergencies resource page has a list of US poison control centers and addiction resources that could help you in an emergency. We also recommend that you consider seeking treatment once the emergency is over.

Mixing with Other Drugs

What are the effects of mixing amphetamines with cocaine, alcohol, cannabis, ecstasy (MDMA), heroin, LSD, magic mushrooms, tobacco and other drugs?

Taking amphetamines with cocaine or ecstasy is a risky venture, since these drugs all have a similar effect on the body. Mixing amphetamines with certain anti-depressant medications, known as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), means that the effect of the amphetamines greatly intensifies, up to six times higher than usual.  Learn more about mixing... amphetamines and other substances.

Drug Tests and Detox

What are the detection times? How long do amphetamines stay in my system? Will I pass an amphetamine drug test?

Amphetamines will show up on drug tests for one or two days after use. Depression is a common symptom of an addict undergoing detox for amphetamines and can last for several weeks.

Amphetamines detox should be supervised by trained personnel for safety reasons. Learn more about amphetamines drug testing and how long it takes to detox... from amphetamines.

Legality, The Laws of Possession, Use, and Distribution

Are amphetamines illegal? I got caught with amphetamines, am I going to jail? How long are sentences for amphetamine dealers; what about just possession for recreational use? Is it a felony?

Under U.S. and U.K. law, simple possession of amphetamines that are not prescribed by a doctor is a criminal offense. A conviction for trafficking in these drugs carries a prison sentence. Learn more about the legal and criminal aspects... of the drug.

Spiritual or Medicinal Use

Can amphetamines be used for purposes other than recreational, like spiritual or medicinal?

Amphetamines are prescribed to treat certain disorders, such as Attention Deficit Disorder. These medications may also be used to treat narcolepsy.

In the Media

Amphetamines as covered by the press

Amphetamines have made quite an impact on society in general. Use of the drug remains widespread, from students who use it to help them stay up and study longer to amphetamine-addled ravers who dance non-stop for hours. Naturally, this effect allows amphetamines to remain in the public eye through constant media exposure. Below is an example of amphetamines in the press.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are amphetamines really the "poorman's coke"? How long does it stay in your urine?

A number of questions are commonly asked about amphetamines and its effects, its origins. From the ordinary and logical line of questions to the often bizarre, we present answers to questions... about this drug.

Sample questions posed by visitors to the site:

» what is "ice"?

» are there any incompatible medical conditions?

» is it safe to take during pregnancy?

Related Site Links

» the gallery: ice

» the gallery: amphetamine base 1 & 2

» the gallery: dextroamphetamine powder

» the gallery: dextroamphetamine pills

» articles: famous users: amphetamines

Offsite Links

» amphetamines@erowid.org massive resource

» methamphetamines@erowid.org another massive resource

» the smokers guide Amsterdam's finest catalogued

Related News Stories

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» Amphetamines for Improving Recovering after Stroke (Cochrane, 2003)

» Drugs Involved In US Friendly Fire Incident (BBC News, 2002)

» Hitlers Drug Set To Invade British Clubs (The Observer, 1999)

» Ritalin: Family Sues Drug Firm Over Baby Killing (Guardian, 2000)

 
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