Charles Romney Alder Wright, an English chemist, experimented with combining morphine and various acids. These experiments resulted in the discovery of diamorphine or heroin. Due to its powerful effects, misuse rose rapidly and caused a wide range of problems in the United States. The country made the drug illegal in 1924, and it has remained that way ever since. Today, people continue to use and misuse heroin, quickly leading to addiction. As a result, a heroin addiction treatment program may be necessary. To learn more about our substance abuse treatment programs, please reach out to Silicon Beach Treatment Center today at 213.460.1706 and speak to one of our specialists.
Long-Term Consequences of Heroin Abuse
Long-term use of heroin affects nearly every biological system in the human body. Some of these systems include the neuron pathways and hormones that regulate the body’s functions.
Studies have indicated that extended heroin use may lead to the degeneration of white matter in the brain. This impacts the ability of your brain to operate. Resulting in profound indecisiveness, impaired inhibitions, and altering the way a person reacts to emotional turmoil.
As the person’s tolerance builds, they require more significant amounts of the drug to achieve the desired euphoria. Once the person reaches the point of physical addiction, they will experience extreme withdrawal symptoms when attempting to stop.
One reason for this is that putting heroin into your body for an extended period results in the repression of dopamine. The body decreases the chemical’s natural production over time when it has received it artificially. This explains the debilitating depression and lacking the ability to feel joy commonly associated with stopping use.
Signs and Symptoms of Heroin Addiction
Heroin addiction often starts with a legal prescription for pain medication from a physician. The pain killer use develops into abuse and the need for larger and more potent drugs to get a similar effect. This process alters the state of the brain on a fundamental level, and full-blown addiction follows. Being cheaper and more easily accessible than prescription medications, the heroin problem in America has reached epidemic proportions.
Using opiates or heroin can result in an influx in the brain’s feel-good mechanism, which is what gives addicts the feeling of being high. Today we’ve seen the stereotypical image of an addict dramatically change, with everyone from students, teachers, and well-established professionals turning to heroin to alleviate underlying emotional turmoil.
The longer a person uses, the more they perceive the drug as a need. As a result, with their decision-making and self-restraint instincts, the individual will do just about anything to obtain the drug. In other words, this often leads to destroying relationships and lives. Those who administer the substance either intravenously or nasally are at even greater risk due to the quickness these methods transport heroin into the bloodstream.
Symptoms of heroin use:
- Constricted pupils
- Sudden drop in weight
- Small red dots on the arms and feet from injecting
- Shifts in personality
- Difficulty remembering things
- Changes in habits
- Shady behaviors, such as lying
- Persists in using drugs despite adverse effects
Heroin Treatment Options
Most people who use heroin continue to use it because of the painful reactions their bodies go through when they stop the drug. An individual suffering from withdrawal symptoms may experience wild shifts in mood, pain throughout the body, as well as bouts of nausea and throwing up.
Since heroin addiction has such an intense physical component, behavior modification must be accompanied by the use of medicine. Heroin users will likely be prescribed medication during the initial stages of detoxification. These medications will help to alleviate some of the symptoms associated with withdrawal. When the effects of withdrawal have diminished, a doctor may prescribe alternative medicines. This is referred to as medication-assisted treatment and is hailed as one of the top treatment options.
Recover from Addiction at Silicon Beach Treatment Center Today
Overcoming heroin addiction, like addiction in any form, can be difficult. Stopping cold turkey is one of the most dangerous and unsuccessful routes you can take. Detox is required as the beginning measure when treating opioid dependence. The detoxification process may take up to a week. Following detox, a one to three-month treatment program is advised as the best way to ensure success. If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction to heroin, our heroin addiction treatment program is here to help.
We’re here to assist you as best we can. We believe that anyone who makes a mistake with heroin addiction deserves another chance to live a better life. To contact us for more information, please call Silicon Beach Treatment Center today at 213.460.1706.