With individualized addiction recovery services, a heroin addict has the best chances of successful rehabilitation. If you aren’t sure whether or not you have a problem, use our online assessment tool to gain perspective. Then, call to speak with a counselor and learn more about your options.
What is Heroin?
Heroin is found in a number of different forms. The poppy plant is the source of the medication; the opium is extracted, this substance is converted into morphine, and from there, the product is modified again, resulting in heroin.
Sometimes it is a white powder, easily distributed to a large group of people. Other times, the powder is brown. In some cases, the drug actually looks similar to tar or is made up of solid black chunks. There are multiple ways to consume these types of heroin. Some prefer to smoke or snort the substance, while others inject it directly into the body.
What is Heroin Addiction?
When the drug is injected into the body, a heroin addict feels an immediate rush. This rush is what keeps a person going back to the drug over and over again. It takes very little time to transition from trying out heroin to having a full-blown heroin addiction. This is why it is so important for those who use heroin to reach out and get help now, before things get worse.
Without the help of heroin addiction treatment, individuals may suffer from the consequences of extended use. A person may no longer care about their well-being, opting instead to focus on when and how heroin can be obtained. This is one of the more noticeable signs of heroin addiction. But it is never too late for you or a loved one to overcome addiction.
Better Addiction Care can help you find cost-effective facilities with highly trained staff that offer customized programs to meet the needs of each individual. We can even help coordinate your transportation needs and insurance coverage.
Risk of Overdose in Heroin Users
The consequences could be dire for addicts who don’t seek out professional help. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, a heroin overdose often results in the suppression of breathing. This means that the brain doesn’t get the necessary amount of oxygen, resulting in severe damage to both the body and the brain. With health effects this severe, it’s crucial for those who struggle with addiction to heroin to seek out alternative rehab programs as soon as possible.
Signs of Heroin Drug Addiction in Users
Do you know how to spot signs of heroin use? You may suspect your loved one is using heroin, but you aren’t sure. There are signs of heroin use that you can look for to help determine if your loved one is taking the drug. Heroin is a powerful opioid narcotic that is highly abused and addictive. Many people who suffer with severe pain may have been given prescription opioid medications to alleviate their problem. Some of these patients became addicted to their medications because they abused them by taking more than the recommended dosage. When their doctors would no longer renew their prescription, some of these patients turned to heroin. This may be the case with your loved one if he was on an opioid medication. Other individuals take heroin recreationally to get high, and they also pose a risk to addiction. Let us examine some of the signs of a heroin addict:
1. Lies and Manipulation
One of the biggest signs of a heroin addict is lies and manipulation. An addict is so desperate for his drug, and fearful of experiencing withdrawal symptoms, that he will do whatever is necessary to achieve his goal. Heroin addicts will lie about everything that they want hidden from you, such as: where they went, with whom, where they spend their money, etc. If you notice that your loved one is constantly being caught in lies, you know they are hiding something from you. Manipulation can be used on you at every turn, especially if you are naive and trusting. Your loved one will give you all kinds of excuses for why he can’t or didn’t do something, or needs to borrow money, etc.
Signs of heroin use include the addict withdrawing from family and friends. Activities that he may have once enjoyed hold no interest for him now. Addicts prefer the company of other addicts, or to be alone to use their drug. Sadly, many heroin addicts wind up being estranged from family, and socially isolated and lonely when their addiction has a strong hold over them. You may begin to notice behavioral changes in your loved one also, because of the effects of heroin on his brain and body.
3. Neglecting Responsibilities
Heroin addicts may begin to ignore their duties and responsibilities. They may begin to have problems at work because of poor attendance or performance that can result in losing their job. There may be problems in the family or with their spouse because of their addiction. Separation, divorce, abuse and neglecting to take care of their children can tear the family apart, and create a host of emotional fallout for all concerned.
4. Poor Self Care & Physical and Mental Decline
Addicts tend to neglect personal hygiene and good grooming. They may appear unkempt and smell from a lack of bathing. Heroin addicts will wear clothes that cover their arms and legs if they want to hide needle marks from shooting up. Physical signs of heroin use can also include: sedation, muscle and bone pain, a weakened immune system, shivering, infections, weakness, nausea, vomiting, sleeping, damaged teeth and gums, kidney or liver damage, trouble breathing, infection of the heart valves, weight loss, overdose, and a decrease in libido and sexual functioning. The mental signs of a heroin addict can include: euphoria, delusions, anxiety, mood swings, restlessness, hallucinations, hostility, and memory loss.
5. Seemingly sleepy or sedated
Heroin has a sedative effect that can cause an addict to be sleepy. Sometimes the addict can fall into a deep sleep and will not wake up. This sedative effect, known as “on the nod,” is considered the gateway to fatal consequences. Heroin addicts run the risk of losing consciousness, falling into a coma, or their breathing can stop because the respiratory system has been severely depressed. They also run the risk of having an overdose.
Get Help for Heroin Addiction with Better Addiction Care
If you or someone you love is displaying heroin addiction symptoms, there is no time to waste. Fill out our contact form for more information. We understand how difficult this first step can be and will work to make it a safe and comfortable experience for everyone involved. BetterAddictionCare’s services are 100% confidential, and our work doesn’t stop at admission into an inpatient treatment program. We’ll also work with a recovery team in your area to follow up after treatment and offer continued support. Don’t delay: Get help now.