Heroin is an illegal, highly addictive drug processed from morphine, a naturally occurring substance extracted from the seed pod of certain varieties of poppy plants. It is typically sold as a white or brownish powder that is "cut" with sugars, starch, powdered milk, or quinine. Pure heroin is a white powder with a bitter taste that can be snorted or smoked and may be more appealing to new users because it eliminates the stigma associated with injection drug use. Heroin addiction treatment is typically the only choice if you're looking to get better.
Impure heroin is usually dissolved, diluted, and injected into veins, muscles, or under the skin.
Almost immediately upon using heroin, users can experience euphoria, warm flushing of the skin, dry mouth, heaviness in the arms and legs, and poor cognition. These effects can continue for many hours, and users can go from hyper-alertness to drowsiness.
Many issues can result from heroin abuse that can jeopardize a user's health, including:
Overdoses, both fatal and non-fatal, are of particular concern for users of street heroin because it is impossible to determine the contents of the heroin, as it may have been cut with other dangerous substances.
One of the greatest dangers associated with heroin is its ability to cause individuals to become both physically and psychologically dependent. Heroin addiction interferes and essentially halts normal living, and comes with the risk of being arrested and jailed for use or actions related to use.
Very rarely, people can use heroin without developing addictions, however most people get hooked after their first time using. There may be a genetic component to the development of addiction (known as the so-called "addictive personality"). Some risk factors for addiction development can include psychological issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, personality disorder, anxiety and panic disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Also, a family history of substance abuse can also increase an individual's risk of becoming addicted.
Yet when it comes to heroin detox and rehab, one size does not fit all – with different heroin addiction treatment options speaking to the needs of certain individuals.
A variety of effective heroin addiction treatments are available, including both behavioral and pharmacological (medications). Both approaches help to restore a degree of normalcy to brain function and behavior, after the stage of heroin detox.
Although behavioral and pharmacologic treatments can be extremely useful when utilized alone, research shows that for some people, integrating both types of heroin addiction treatments is the most effective approach.
When people addicted to opioids first quit, they undergo withdrawal symptoms (pain, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting), which may be severe. Medications can be helpful in this heroin detox stage to ease craving and other physical symptoms, which often prompt a person to relapse. While not a treatment for addiction itself, heroin detox is a useful first step when it is followed by attendance in one of the many evidence-based treatment programs that are available.
With all the possible heroin addiction treatment options, it's important to keep in mind that what a person experiences during recovery will solely depend on specific factors including how long they have been using and how severe their substance abuse is.
Your recovery will depend on your ability to understand and cope with other challenges, such as underlying psychological problems that may have caused or been caused by your heroin use.
Treating an addiction to heroin usually involves therapy, medication, support groups and lifestyle changes. These treatments are available at both inpatient and outpatient treatment centers.
Again, the length of treatment depends on each individual case. Government studies show that people who remain in treatment and stay connected to support groups for at least one year, even on an outpatient basis, are more likely to stay sober after rehab.
-Medically Assisted Heroin Detox
-Individual and Group Counseling
If you are interested in finding out more about the heroin addiction treatment programs that are available in your area, call today at (617) 517-6448. Professionals can guide you through the process of choosing the most effective addiction treatment options to help you or someone you love.