SIOUX FALLS, SD -
Sioux Falls police tell us the number of meth arrests is not rising; local treatment centers are seeing a different trend.
Over the past few years, the number of patients they have been treating with meth addictions was way down, but since the start of this year, it has been a very different story.
When South Dakota changed its laws making it more difficult for people to make meth, treatment centers like Keystone Outreach saw an immediate impact.
"We hadn't for quite some time. When the Sudafed was pulled off the shelves, we saw our meth addicts or usage go way down. I won't say non existent, but it was very low at that point for some time," Phyllis Bauerle with Keystone Outreach said.
But that trend is changing. In the last month, at least four meth labs have led to arrests in the Sioux Falls area. To Bauerle, it wasn't a surprise; Keystone is seeing a similar increase.
"Now all of a sudden, we are seeing a lot more meth users. We are seeing more people on the meth state program that are coming through our inpatient and out-patient facilities," Bauerle said.
While Bauerle isn't sure exactly why the trends are changing, she and her coworkers have a hunch.
"In some cases and we have just kind of talked about it, but it could be the fact that they found another way to make it without the Sudafed," Bauerle said.
She says many users admit meth at home is not hard because many of the products you need, you can find at a local grocery store.
"The most we are hearing is the Drano, the battery acid. We've heard they are using rat poisoning in that," Bauerle said.
The most common method we hear about in our area is with pop bottles, which Bauerle says is actually not just used as a container, but when the plastic heats up, it gives addicts more of a high.
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