- McGregor, Iain.
About this work
The drug crystal methamphetamine, or ice, is cheap, highly addictive and ultra powerful. This graphic documentary from Australia shows the extremes of ice addiction by following the lives of addicts, who stay manically high for up to a week, scoring and shooting up (shown throughout) and not eating. Then they crash and eat, before the welfare cheque arrives and the cycle starts again. Drug addiction defines the lives of these people. The drug works by producing huge amounts of dopamime, ultimately changing the chemistry of the brain. Leonore, an addict, shows an extraordinary side-effect of taking the drug, known as 'scattering' where she spends hours (sometimes days) foraging through rubbish bins, salvaging. Long term usage has been proven to cause amphetamine psychosis which mimics schizophrenia (1 in 4 users are reported to be effected in this way). Professor Iain McGregor from the School of Psychology, Sydney University, comments further. Dr Gordian Fulde then reports from the front line; when the Emergency Department receives a patient on ice, it can take 6 people to restrain them before they can be given huge doses of tranquilisers. A man who enters rehab is followed; he can be given an opiate-depressant for his heroin addiction but there are no licensed alternatives for ice in Australia. He fails and is jailed for possession of drugs - ironically getting a chance to clean-up. Unfortunately his girlfriend is also a user and she is pregnant. Finally, violent crime as perpetrated by a few of the seemingly harmless addicts is described.
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