Crystal Meth: A Clear and Present Danger

From newspapers to TV talk shows, the growing problem of crystal meth (crystal methamphetamine) use has been identified as one that has a severe impact on communities, including Lethbridge.

A recovering addict calls it “The Beast” and a CBC special on the growing problem of crystal meth was titled “Dark Crystal”. Television commercials sponsored by Alberta Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission (ADDAC) have graphically illustrated the negative effects of crystal meth use.

When the Provincial health ministers gathered recently, ministers from the West pushed hard for a national strategy for dealing with this destructive and highly addictive and readily available drug. It can be smoked, ingested, injected, absorbed, and snorted, providing users with a multitude of “cheap” highs. What do we know about crystal meth? And what can we do as citizens to stop its abuse?

The focus of the November 3 presentation is a look at the issues surrounding crystal meth, including the effects of the drug, some of the signs and symptoms exhibited by users, and the short and long term effects of crystal meth addictions. We’ll hear about treatment options as well as prevention strategies.

Speaker: Gwen Reimer

Gwen Reimer an addictions counselor with ADDAC in Lethbridge. Gwen has a BA in Psychology from the University of Lethbridge and a Bachelor of Social Work degree from the University of Calgary. She has worked in the addictions field for many years including 2 years at the Lander Treatment centre in Claresholm and now 9 years in Lethbridge. Gwen will speak about treatment options for this insidious addiction as well as some strategies that have been identified to prevent its use. She will share some of her insights as a frontline worker who encounters the horrors of crystal meth use daily.

Gwen will be accompanied by Eldon Coward, District Manager of ADDAC (South District) who will participate in answering questions.

Download the Audio of this session. Download the Audio of Audience Q&A from this session.

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