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Heroin is one of the most dangerous drugs to start using and one of the easiest to become addicted to. Heroin addiction is one of the most common out of all the opiates. Its high level of addictiveness combined with the havoc even limited use wreaks on the system makes it hard for users to quit and very dangerous to try and quit cold turkey. Synthesized and extracted from morphine, the drug takes literally no time at all to catch the user in an addictive web in which they literally play Russian roulette with their lives. While the US may have one of the largest concentration of heroin addicts, with some estimates citing over a million heroin users, other countries and other cultures of people have seen heroin addiction rise in recent years as well.
Heroin is often mixed or “cut” with other ordinarily benign substances, although heroin abuse in its purest form is becoming increasingly common. It is not uncommon for users to graduate to heroin from other drugs. They will start taking heroin and experience immediate euphoria. Use will continue in an effort to experience that same feeling. Since the feeling is rarely emulated, users up their dose. Before they know it, they’re addicted to what many believe is the most deadly and costly drug there is, costing users over $200 a day and resulting in hundreds of thousands of lost lives every year worldwide.
How is Heroin taken?
Heroin can be injected, smoked, or snorted – though injection is the preferred method for most users because of its rapid results. The injection method has been linked to the contraction of HIV from shared needles in a growing number of users. Little or no attention is paid to sterility, and the user sometimes gets infected without realizing it until a long time after. Some of the many street names for heroin include: smack, junk, horse, H or China white.
Physical and Mental Effects of Heroin Addiction
Each time a person ingests heroin, they’re significantly increasing their chances of heart failure, respiratory failure, bacterial infections, brain damage, and a variety of other deadly conditions. Other symptoms of heroin abuse include: blood pressure complications, coma, convulsions, seizures, muscle spasms, weak pulse, etc. There are also significant psychological risks associated with heroin addiction. This is why a course of psychiatric therapy is recommended when the patient decides to enter recovery treatment. The power heroin exerts over the brain is great. Many users even suffer through a period of withdrawal (usually a painful and sickening process) so they can diminish the tolerance they’ve built up, in an effort to experience that elusive initial “rush”. Over half of those who use heroin are undisputedly addicted.
The Best Way to Achieve Lasting Recovery from Heroin Addiction
Freedom from heroin addiction often comes at a very high price. This is called the withdrawal process. Attempting to detox yourself or go cold turkey from a heroin addiction can have fatal results such as heart attack, stroke, seizures, coma, or death. Only a licensed medical detox should be used for anyone addicted to heroin. The National Alcohol and Substance Abuse Information Center (NASAIC) maintains a continuously updated national database of heroin addiction treatment centers in your local area, as well as the leading recommended heroin addiction treatment centers in the United States and around the world.