Just hearing the word "ice" is enough to send a chill through the bones of Australian parents.
Crystal methamphetamine has a well earned reputation for being highly addictive and highly destructive, and the evidence suggests it is wreaking havoc in suburbs and towns throughout the nation.
As reported in today's Newcastle Herald, recorded incidents of amphetamine possession across the state rose 250 per cent between 2009 and 2016, and the Hunter region has been among the worst affected.
The rise in possession incidents in the Hunter and Central Coast has been reported as closer to 400 per cent.
Next week, the NSW government's Special Commission of Inquiry into the Drug Ice will arrive in East Maitland for three days of hearings.
The commission has heard from a long list of front-line hospital staff, academics, police officers and support services about the drug's rising impact on the community.
Its Dubbo hearings included testimony that ice had caused family breakdowns, poor literacy and numeracy, prostitution by a student, crime, violence, mental illness and addiction in children as young as 12.
Dubbo Base Hospital nurse Christopher Waters said he knew 25 people who had died from the drug in the past two years.
It would be no surprise if the East Maitland sessions produced testimony equally harrowing.
Cessnock has amphetamine possession statistics more than twice the state average, and Maitland's and Muswellbrook's are not far behind.
Professor Michael Farrell, from the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of NSW, quoted research on day one of the inquiry in Sydney that showed almost all users described ice as "very easy" (64 per cent) or "easy" (25 per cent) to obtain.
He also quoted data from the Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System that the reported street price of crystal meth had fallen.
The National Coronial Information System shows methamphetamine deaths rose from 20 in 2010 to 108 in 2016, the most recent year of available figures.
Amphetamines were a contributing factor in another 364 drug-induced deaths in 2016.
These two figures combined equate to about half Australia's annual road toll.
But the death rate associated with the drug's rise is only part of the story.
The experts who have given evidence at the inquiry tell a story of health and policing services at breaking point. A 2013 report placed the annual dollar cost of methamphetamines in Australia at more than $5 billion, including $3.3 billion on policing, justice and imprisonment.
The question for the government when the inquiry hands down its findings will be what to do about it all. Many in the community are, quite literally, crying for answers.