Michigan Launches Meth Awareness WebsiteContact: T.J. Bucholz (517) 241-2112Agency: Community Health
July 31, 2006
The Office of Drug Control Policy (ODCP), within the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH), has launched a new website, www.michiganmethwatch.org, to help increase awareness on the dangers of methamphetamine (meth) and to promote community intervention through education.
“We are battling a very disturbing epidemic,” said Janet Olszewski, MDCH Director. “It is imperative that we take every step possible to educate the public on the devastating effects of meth.”
Meth is a very powerful and highly addictive illegal stimulant that can be made from common household products. It can be smoked, snorted, injected, and swallowed and its effects can last from 6 to 24 hours. Over time, the use of meth causes permanent brain damage, respiratory problems, irregular heartbeat, acute anorexia, and severe tooth decay also known as “meth mouth”.
Meth labs also produce toxic waste and are prone to explosions and fires, making them dangerous to surrounding areas. Those who come into contact with meth labs can suffer serious burns, collapsed lungs, negative long-term health effects, and even death.
“Methamphetamine has the capacity to impact and destroy not only households, but entire communities,” said Don Allen, ODCP Director. “It is important that people are aware of the signs and dangers of a meth lab, what to do if they find one, and how to ensure that their community unites against the detrimental effects of meth labs.”
The site includes information on what meth is, how to spot addiction, how to recognize if it is being created in your area, and who to contact if you suspect it is being manufactured. Personal stories of meth’s effects on friends and family members are also shared, with an opportunity for the visitor to include his or her own story.
In conjunction with the new site, the Michigan Department of Community Health and Office of Drug Control Policy continue to boost methamphetamine awareness through informative brochures and public service announcements.