What Are The Long Term Effects of Heroin?

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Heroin is an opioid drug that is synthesized from morphine, a natural substance extracted from the seed pod of the opium poppy plant. It is typically sold as a white or brownish powder or as a black, sticky substance known as “black tar heroin.” It is highly addictive and can have severe and long-lasting effects on users.

What Are The Street Names of Heroin?

There are many street names for heroin, and the names may vary depending on the region or location. Some common street names for heroin include:

  • Smack
  • Junk
  • Horse
  • Brown sugar
  • China white
  • Mud
  • Dope
  • H
  • Skag

It’s important to note that street names for drugs can change frequently, and new names may emerge as old ones become more widely known. In some cases, street names for drugs may be disguised as everyday terms or words that are not easily recognizable as referring to drugs. This is often done in an effort to avoid detection by law enforcement or others who may be listening in on conversations about drug use.

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What Are Some Short Term Effects Of Heroin Use?

The short-term effects of using heroin can vary depending on the method of administration, the dosage, and the individual’s tolerance and other factors. Common short-term effects of using heroin include:

  • Euphoria: A sense of intense happiness or well-being.
  • Pain relief: Reduced sensitivity to physical discomfort.
  • Drowsiness: A state of being tired or feeling the need to sleep.
  • Constricted pupils: Smaller than normal size of the pupils in the eyes.
  • Dry mouth: A feeling of having a dry mouth or throat.
  • Itching: An uncomfortable sensation on the skin that causes a desire to scratch.

Other short-term effects of using heroin may include nausea, vomiting, constipation, and impaired judgment and decision-making. In some cases, using heroin can also lead to slowed breathing and heart rate, which can be dangerous or even life-threatening. It’s important to note that the use of any drug, including heroin, carries risks and potential negative consequences, and it is important to be aware of these risks before using any substance.

What Are Some Long Term Effects of Heroin Use?

Now that you know the short term effects of heroin use, it is important to know that the long-term use of heroin can lead to serious health problems, including:

  • Physical dependence: Heroin users can develop a physical dependence on the drug, which means they will experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop using it. These can include muscle and bone pain, insomnia, diarrhea, and vomiting.
  • Mental health problems: Heroin can alter the brain’s chemistry and function, leading to changes in mood, cognition, and behavior. Chronic users may develop depression, anxiety, and psychosis.
  • Infectious diseases: Heroin is often injected, and sharing needles can transmit HIV, hepatitis, and other blood-borne diseases.
  • Overdose: Heroin is a powerful central nervous system depressant, and taking too much can lead to coma or death. The risk of overdose is increased when heroin is combined with other drugs or alcohol.
  • Damage to the body: Long-term use of heroin can damage the organs, including the brain, heart, and liver. It can also cause scarring and abscesses at injection sites.

Social problems: Heroin abuse can lead to financial problems, as users may spend a significant amount of money on the drug. It can also strain relationships and cause problems at work or school.

What Are The Effects of Heoin Use In The United States?

According to data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), in 2018, an estimated 9.2 million people aged 12 or older had used heroin at least once in their lifetimes, representing 3.6% of the population in that age range. In the same year, an estimated 886,000 people aged 12 or older had a heroin use disorder.

The number of people using heroin in the United States has fluctuated over time, with some evidence suggesting that there has been an increase in use in recent years. The opioid epidemic, which began in the late 1990s and early 2000s, has been a major contributor to the increased use of heroin and other opioid drugs.

In 2018, an estimated 15,482 people died from a heroin overdose in the United States. This represents a rate of 5.2 overdose deaths per 100,000 people. Heroin overdose deaths have been increasing in recent years, with the rate more than tripling between 2010 and 2018.

Heroin overdose deaths can occur among people of all ages, but the age group with the highest rate of overdose deaths is 25-34 years old. In 2018, this age group had a rate of 17.2 overdose deaths per 100,000 people. It’s important to note that overdose deaths can be prevented through the use of naloxone, a medication that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.

What Are The Steps to Take If Someone is Overdosing?

If you suspect that someone is overdosing on heroin, it is important to act quickly and seek medical help. Heroin overdose can be a life-threatening emergency, and timely treatment is essential.

Here are some steps you can take to help someone who is overdosing on heroin:

  1. Call 911 or your local emergency number. Do not hesitate to seek medical help.
  2. Stay with the person and try to keep them awake and alert.
  3. If the person is unconscious, check their airway, breathing, and pulse. If they are not breathing, perform CPR if you are trained to do so.
  4. Administer naloxone if it is available. Naloxone is a medication that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. It can be administered as a nasal spray or injection.
  5. If naloxone is not available, do not try to force the person to vomit. This can cause them to inhale vomit, which can be dangerous.

It’s important to note that naloxone is not a substitute for medical care, and it is essential to seek medical help as soon as possible if you suspect someone is overdosing on heroin. It’s also important to understand that naloxone is not a cure for addiction, and it is important to address the underlying issues that led to drug use in order to support recovery.

What Help Can I Get If I Struggle with Heroin?

  1. Behavioral therapies: These therapies aim to change an individual’s attitudes and behaviors related to drug use, and may involve individual or group counseling, cognitive-behavioral therapy, or contingency management.
  2. Medications: There are medications available for the treatment of addiction to opioids, alcohol, and nicotine. These medications can help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms and improve a person’s chances of achieving long-term recovery.
  3. Detoxification: This process involves removing the drugs from a person’s system and managing withdrawal symptoms. It is often the first step in addiction treatment, but it is not a complete treatment in itself.
  4. Residential treatment: Also known as inpatient treatment, this type of program provides intensive, round-the-clock care in a structured setting. It is often recommended for people with severe addiction who need a high level of support and supervision.
  5. Outpatient treatment: This type of treatment allows people to live at home while attending counseling or therapy sessions several times a week. It may be a good option for people with less severe addiction or those who have completed a residential program.
  6. Support groups: Groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous provide a supportive environment for people in recovery to share their experiences and receive encouragement from others who have gone through similar challenges.

Get Help With Addiction In Los Angeles Now

Addiction and mental health disorders are a common struggle among American adults. With IOP treatment, recovery from these disorders is possible. Treatment can include therapy and medication management if needed.

If you or your loved ones are struggling with addiction or mental health, reach out Solace Treatment today. Our team can answer any questions you may have and give you a better understanding of our IOP program.