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This is a small portion of the history of meth written to help understand how the very powerful and abusive drug got started in the United States. Methamphetamine was discovered in Japan in 1919.  This was a more potent form of amphetamines.  In Japan after World War II, methamphetamine abuse reached epidemic portions.  Methamphetamine was given to bomber pilots in World War II so it would sustain them on long flights. This experiment failed due to the fact that the soldiers could not channel their aggression and would become irritable.

Following the History Of Meth Through the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s

History Of MethThe history of meth in the 1950’s was marked by the selling of meth to treat narcolepsy, obesity, and sinus inflammation.  It was even used to treat mild depression. “Bennies” or “pep pills“, were sold for non-prescription purposes. College students, homemakers, truck drivers, and athletes would take these pills to keep them active and to stay awake. In the 1960’s doctors at drug clinics in San Francisco prescribed injections of meth for the treatment of heroin addiction.

When the 1970’s came around meth, or speed, began being regulated by the Controlled Substances Act. This was the beginning of a public education campaign. Then Mexican drug manufacturers began bringing meth north of their border into the United States.  It was then that different forms of meth, that could be smoked, were introduced.

The History From the 1990’s to Today

The history of methamphetamine in the 1990’s was noted for introducing new ways to cook meth. Some of these new ways of cooking meth could make the drug up to six times stronger. The greatest amount of meth use was seen in the west and southwest. In the year of 2000 in the northwest and much of the west, meth was the favorite hard drug and surpassed cocaine, heroin, and crack.  Today, meth labs have spread east and to rural areas and small towns everywhere.

This is only a brief history of meth.  For more information on the history of meth, call Stop Your Addiction toll-free.

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