Heroin Addiction: Some Important Facts

Heroin Addiction: Some Important Facts

Heroin, an opioid manufactured from morphine, is just as addictive as the parent drug. It is a form of opiate which is usually smoked, injected, or snorted. This illegal drug enters the bloodstream, reaches the brain, and stimulates the pain receptors, giving a sense of pleasure and joy. Continuous consumption of heroin also affects the user’s heart rate, breathing patterns, and sleep. 

Developing Heroin Addiction

It takes a few frequent doses of heroin for the user to develop an addiction. When the drug enters the body of the user, it quickly reaches the brain and releases high levels of hormones responsible for causing pain relief. They bring a sense of euphoria to the user. 

As the frequency of doses increases, the brain begins to lose its ability to produce these hormones naturally, in turn creating a dependency on the drug. The user needs to keep taking heroin to feel joy and pleasure. This cycle is then repeated, and addiction is soon developed. 

Side Effects Of Heroin Addiction

Heroin is a fatal drug and has some adverse effects on the body and mind of the user. There are certain short-term and long-term effects observed after prolonged use of the drug. 

Short-term effects:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Low blood pressure
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Unconsciousness 

Long-term effects:

  • Cognitive disorientation
  • Heart damage
  • Liver problems
  • Kidney disorders
  • Circulatory issues 

People taking heroin via injections are likely to develop infections, abscesses, HIV, and hepatitis C if they reuse or share needles.

Identifying Heroin Overdose

A heroin user is also at a risk of overdosing if unable to control the frequency and amount of dosage. They will show signs of overdosing like:

  • Slow or stopped breathing
  • Weak or no pulse 
  • Blue tint on nails and lips
  • Unable to sleep or wake up if sleeping already 
  • Pinpoint pupils

If you find anyone overdosing from heroin, immediately call for medical help. The medical professionals will give them a dose of Naloxone – a medication for treating opioid overdose. 

Underlying Mental Health Issues Found In Heroin Users 

Usually, heroin users have existing mental health issues like anxiety, depression, or PTSD. These could often be the reasons behind their addiction. There are also cases where users have developed such mental health issues after the addiction took over.

Heroin Withdrawal

Withdrawal symptoms could be faced while detoxing from heroin. Not every user will experience the same symptoms as they depend on the frequency, amount, and duration of the drug intake. Some of the withdrawal symptoms are: 

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Cold flashes
  • Heroin cravings
  • Insomnia
  • Constipation
  • Depression 

These symptoms could be extremely dangerous to face alone; therefore, consulting a professional at a rehab center is always recommended. 

Approach Skyward Treatment for your heroin detox, where our qualified staff will help you with the withdrawal symptoms and also provide other therapies. Call us now to know more. 

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