Methamphetamine (Meth)

Methamphetamine, also known as meth, speed, crank, crystal, and ice, is an illegal drug that stimulants the central nervous system. It is often manufactured as a white, bitter-tasting powder or pill or fragments that look like glass or bluish-white rocks. It can be injected, smoked, snorted, or taken orally.

Methamphetamine may cause periods of high energy and rapid speech. Many users of methamphetamine also experience severe depression, delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, and violent behavior. Long-term use leads to physical dependence with withdrawal symptoms.

Methamphetamine in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) is working with its state and community partners to reduce the negative impacts of methamphetamine use on individuals, families, and communities. Northwest Wisconsin experienced a surge in methamphetamine use and addiction in the late 1990s and early 2000s. State laws were enacted in the mid-2000s to restrict access to substances used to produce methamphetamine in home labs. However, in recent years, Wisconsin has seen a new surge in methamphetamine use and addiction. Abuse of this drug has spread to the southern and eastern parts of the state. It is growing in popularity because it is less expensive and it has a longer euphoric effect than other illegal stimulants. Today, the majority of the methamphetamine available in Wisconsin is produced in Mexico and transported here by drug-trafficking organizations.

Prevention Works. Treatment is Effective. Recovery is Possible.

The Alliance for Wisconsin Youth is working with its community partners in all regions of the state to raise awareness of the health and safety dangers of methamphetamine production and use. This effort targets people of all ages. Find a coalition near you.

With the right services and supports, individuals living with a methamphetamine use disorder, can, and do get better. In Wisconsin, services for treatment and recovery are delivered in a variety of settings. Pregnant women are given priority in substance use treatment admissions.

DHS has provided training on an effective treatment model to counties and tribes with the highest demand for services for methamphetamine use disorder. This strategy, known as the Matrix Model, has shown to be successful in increasing treatment retention rates, reducing relapse rates, and improving other life areas such as employment and family support.

Find Help

If this is an emergency and you need help now, call 911.

  • Use this directory to contact your county or tribal agency
  • Use this directory to search for a treatment provider in your area
  • Use this search tool provided by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Methamphetamine Laboratories: Human Health Hazards and Cleanup

Methamphetamine often is manufactured in makeshift laboratories, typically in rented apartments, houses, or hotel rooms. During the production of methamphetamine, hazardous and flammable chemicals can be spilled or emitted in the air, and there is a risk of fire or explosion. Never enter an active methamphetamine lab. Contact local law enforcement immediately. Learn more about the human health hazards of manufacturing methamphetamine and the cleanup of these labs.

Last Revised: March 9, 2018