Health Terrorism?

Avatar for cmkristy
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
Health Terrorism?
Thu, 12-13-2012 - 9:53am

A new anti-crystal meth campaign featuring the warped mugshots of alleged repeat users is scary, but is it effective at discouraging drug abuse? Not really, say researchers.

The "Horrors of Methamphetamines," launched by, claims to show the physical self-destruction that the drug is capable of.

The faces of youthful, virile men and women booked on meth-related charges rapidly mutate as the same individuals are arrested again and again. They transform into haggard, gaunt and unkempt visages just a few years after the apparent downward spiral began.

Acne litters what was once unblemished skin, rosy cheeks hollow out and tangled clumps of hair replace neat 'dos. The online poster warns that these are telltale signs of decay unleashed by prolonged, illegal crystal meth use.

Dr. Dolores Cimini, a psychologist specializing in substance abuse counseling at the State University of New York at Albany, described the scare tactics as "health terrorism" which are not effective at altering behaviors.

Horrors Of Methamphetamines By Shows Faces Ravaged By Alleged Drug Abuse (PHOTOS)-

What do you think? Is this "health terrorism"? Are images such as these effective in discouraging drug abuse?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-18-2012
Fri, 12-14-2012 - 2:02pm
I personally think that these images do a pretty darn good job scaring people out of trying drugs... and isn't that the point? However, I don't know that it would do much to stop someone from using them once they've started. From what I understand, meth is very addictive. Sad that it has to get to this, but if it stopped one of my children from starting, I'm all for it!
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-30-2011
Fri, 12-14-2012 - 2:21pm

I agree that it will work better at prevention than stopping meth users that are already addicted.  It reminds me of the brain on drugs commercials, just with a harsher image.  I don't have a problem with the ads at all, they do show the truth. 


"Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open."

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Fri, 12-14-2012 - 8:13pm

Interestingly, if you compare photos of couples before and after they have children, you'll see a similar kind of physical degredation. Wink

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2011
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 11:23pm
LOL! So true! I think the trouble is that most kids start using drugs so young that they honestly don't think that they will ever be addicted or that any of those things can happen to them. Teenagers aren't known for their foresight after all. I do hope it helps, though.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-29-1999
Sat, 12-22-2012 - 10:25am
This really is nothing new. I remember being in HS and being shown pictures of people with their nasal septums eaten out because of snorting too much cocaine. They've been taking mutilated cars from DD accidents to schools for years. I'm not sure it really works as a deterrent though.