Treating Crystal Meth ( ICE ) patients- Experience of New Hope and New Inception Rehab Center Islamabad

Treating Crystal Meth ( ICE ) patients- Experience of New Hope and New Inception Rehab Center Islamabad

Youth is the main asset of any nation. Thay are ones who are supposed to run the country in next 20-30 years. Pakistan is fortunate that major bulk of population falls in teenage and youth years, ranging from 15 to 30 years. This is the period of gaining skills, physical strength and mental preparedness to take responsibility for tasks assigned. Unfortunately, in last 05 years or so, there has been growing trends of ICE addiction in Pakistan, especially in younger population. ICE vendors are targeting the teenagers in twenties and thirteens. Educational institutions are the prime places. Vendors roam about these places and catch their preys. Another target area is hostels. Many hostels are becoming hub of ICE addicts. Even the girls hostels are not spared. Parents send their children with great hopes and dreams and end up in addiction.
Alas, government officials are not paying any heed to this grave problem. Drug Addiction problem is being dumped under the carpets, raising the number of dysfunctional youth who are creating discomfort in society.

Briefly describing, crystal meth ( ICE ) is a chemical substance that is a powerful stimulant of nervous system. It is in white crystal shape when allowed to solidify. Mostly addicts burn it under the glass and inhale the smoke which create sudden rush, agitation and feeling of euphoria and high energy. Many drastic effects of ICE has been reported on human body. Some of them are as follows:

  • Inflammation of the heart that may result in heart attacks
  • Stiffening if the blood vessels that may cause stroke
  • Headache
  • Agitation
  • Decrease appetite and loss of weight
  • Dizziness
  • Aggressive, combative behavior
    -Palpitations
    -Feeling of being all powerful
  • Psychotic symptoms of visual hallucinations and paranoid ideation

Tolerance to ICE develops soon. Addicts soon realize the need to increase the dose to create similar effects previously experienced.
Withdrawal symptoms result when drug is not available. These include:

  • Feelings of restlessness and depression
  • Physical cramps
  • Combative behavior
  • Headache

In recent years, Islamabad and Attock police has reported high incidence of crimes related to ICE usage. Many youth has lost their lives due to ICE addiction. Homicide rate is increased. Recently a gruesome incident has been reported in Lahore, where an ICE addict killed six members of his family. Another homicide case in posh area of Islamabad has been reported where a young girl was killed. Case proceedings are still under way.

Mode of treatment of ICE patients at NEW HOPE REHAB ISLAMABAD

We receive high bulk of patients of ICE at New Hope Rehab and Caring Center Islamabad. Most families report that patient is aggressive and combative, losing weight and does not sleep whole night. Symptoms of suspicious behavior and avoiding family members are reported. Most patients are not willing for treatment. So we send a team of paramedic staff on request of family. Team tries to control the patient with help of medication and safely transfer the patient.
Once patient is admitted at New Hope Rehab Center Islamabad, he undergoes drug screening test. Initially patient is put in 2 weeks detox program.
Extensive psychotherapy and spiritual therapy program is designed for each patient.
Most patients are young so they accept the treatment. Their mind starts to get better in a positive way. Realization is created in patients for future betterment. The good thing is that prognosis of ICE addiction is better as compared to other addictive substance like heroin, marijuana, cocaine, alcohol.
Our data shows that we treated approximately 456 patients of ICE over period of 2.5 years. After careful follow up, 60 percent patients remained sober after first time treatment. Out of remaining 40 percent, 21 percent got rid of addiction after 2nd and 3rd treatment attempts.
On behalf of New Hope Team, we advise parents to take good care of their children especially in teenage years. Communicate with them, listen to their problems and thoughts. Know their friends and their backgrounds. Government departments dealing with addiction should be more proactive and vigilant in curb the vendors. People involved in drug trafficking should be put behind the bars for lifetime.
May Allah bless our beloved country Pakistan and all of us..!!

About the author:
Dr. Shams Haider
CEO New Hope Rehab and Caring Center Islamabad.

Author has experience of treating ICE patients in two of their facilities namely

  • New Hope Rehab Center Islamabad
  • The New Inception Rehab for Women Islamabad
    He can be reached at shamshaider19@hotmail.com