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Tweaking is a behavior observed in methamphetamine addicts. Chronic methamphetamine abusers are commonly known as tweakers.

Word Usage: Slang/Subcultural ReferenceEdit

Note: The terms tweaking and tweaker are slang used in the drug subculture or sometimes by those who have been in casual contact with it.
The clinical term is Chemical Psychosis.
In this article, we will, as stated, use tweaker and tweaking to refer specifically to a person who is undergoing the effects of Chemical Psychosis, onset specifically by their use of Methamphetamines.


Even within the amphetamine culture there is some blur in the definition of "tweaking". The word once referred specifically to amphetamine psychosis but it also often refers to simply using, or being under the influence of, methamphetamines; tweak as a noun is one of the many slang terms for the drug itself, and so by extension, one who has taken it is said to be "tweaking".

Within the culture itself, it tends to be used to refer to extremes. "He is prone to tweaking" will have a slightly different shade of meaning to a speed-using crowd than it has to folks who were at one time, but now distance themselves from such things. In the former case, it suggests that perhaps the person referred to has a demeanor that is considered unusually eccentric, even amongst other users of the drug; in the latter case, it would usually be interpreted as "He's been known to use speed."


NOTE: This is NOT medical advice. The only true way to prevent problems with drugs is not to use them. If you do use drugs it is sensible to employ harm reduction and lessen the risks associated with the substance, but doing so does not guarantee that there won't be problems.

Tweaking is not always considered undesirable by the user, but its more nerve-wracking and uncomfortable (and discomforting to others, in some cases) manifestations can, in some cases, be abated by attending to common sense and having knowledge of both the drug you are taking, and its effect upon your own body and psychology. Things such as non-stop yammering, inattention to hygiene and obsessive-compulsive tinkering can often be averted by lessening the time spent awake - three days is an absolute maximum and is still too much for most. Users have frequently reported that "speed crazies" can in some cases be rectified by simply remembering to eat, drink and bathe while "tweaking", and come up with various creative ways of reminding themselves to do these things. Oftentimes, it is not the drug that causes the psychosis so much as it is the deprivation from sleep and nutrition it brings.

There are a great many people who believe that it is generally not a good idea at all to use it. The ramifications of this do have consequences for the user, as will, often enough, the use itself.

External linksEdit

  •, a harm-reductionist site intended for people use speed, or who have been using and want to quit, or friends and/or lovers of tweakers who feel their use is affecting the relationship, and feel they'd best be able to help their loved ones by replacing ignorance with understanding. Includes forum and references for treatment. Geared specifically to gay/bi/transgendered men but not limited to that group specifically.


  • This article contains text taken from the public domain NDIC Narcotics Digest Weekly 2005;4(2):1
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).

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