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A high quality heroin detox program is more needed than ever. Health experts report that there is a heroin addiction epidemic going on in America. With the authorities cracking down on the number of pain pill prescriptions doctors can give out, some have turned to heroin as an alternative when they cannot get more pain pills. About 50 percent of people that use heroin report that they started with using pain pills.
Some of the latest statistics from the CDC report that in 2018, almost 15,000 people died from a heroin overdose in the U.S. That’s a slight decline from the year before of 4.1 percent. While it’s great that the numbers have decreased, there are still many people struggling with heroin addiction. In the U.S. alone, in 2018, at least 808,000 people reported using heroin within the past year.
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Heroin is a Schedule II illegal opioid that’s made from morphine. It comes from a class of plants called opium poppy plants in various parts of the world. Other opioids that you may be familiar with are pain pills like hydrocodone, Vicodin, or OxyContin.
Heroin comes in various forms in different colors depending on how manufacturers make it or what they add to it. It can be brown or white powder or a black, sticky known as “black tar heroin”.
Heroin is very addictive. Those that use it usually become addicted to it quite fast. Within just moments after using heroin, users experience very intense feelings of euphoria and relaxation. Some call it a “rush”, which lasts between 10-20 minutes. After that, they will begin to crash, feeling dizzy and extremely tired for an hour or two.
There are various ways people use heroin. Some mix the powder with water and then inject it into their vein with a needle. Others may snort, smoke, or sniff the powder.
Once heroin enters the body, it reaches the brain quickly. The brain goes through serious chemical reactions that can boost dopamine significantly, causing intense feelings of pleasure. Those that use heroin over and over develop a tolerance. This means that they have to use more of the drug to get the same type of “high”. This can lead to having to use heroin just to feel some sense of normalcy, which can be quite dangerous.
Once the high of heroin starts wearing off, your body goes into withdrawal. The brain quickly becomes used to the presence of the drug, and when the brain doesn’t get its normal “fix”, it becomes confused, thinking it needs the chemicals heroin produces and craves more of the drug. Because addiction affects the survival part of the brain, the brain literally feels like it will die if it doesn’t get more of the drug. That’s one reason the body produces such uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms.
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Heroin withdrawal symptoms can start within 6 to 12 hours from the last time you use heroin. The symptoms can range from mild to severe depending on the level of addiction. Much of the time, those that are trying to stop using heroin relapse because the symptoms get very uncomfortable. They may want to quit badly, but the intensity of the withdrawal symptoms are harsh. They think the only thing that will help them feel better is another dose of heroin.
The reality is that you have to fully go through detox in order to get free from heroin addiction. The good news is that there is effective treatment available for opioid addiction and the safest place to start is in a professional heroin detox program. Typically, heroin withdrawal symptoms will peak within 3 to 4 days. From there, symptoms will decrease in intensity each day after.
Heroin relapse rates are quite high, so undergoing a professional detox with around-the-clock supervision is the best way to stop using. Chances are, you’ve already tried to stop using heroin on your own but have found it to be more challenging than expected.
Detox is the first step in the heroin rehab process. It’s important to detox under the care of addiction specialists so that they can monitor your health and keep you safe during withdrawal. As your body detoxes from the harmful chemicals associated with heroin, the range of withdrawal symptoms can feel overwhelming. If you try to detox on your own, you could become frustrated and go right back to using. However, if you detox with the help of addiction recovery professionals, you’re much more apt to kick heroin for good.
Note that you should not try to quit using heroin cold turkey, as this can cause severe and dangerous medical complications – especially if you stop using for a while and then start back up at the same dose you had been using previously. Doing this could cause an overdose.
Typically, tapering off of opioids is the preferred and safer method to getting free from addiction. Some treatment centers offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to treat opioid use disorder. This means that you taper off heroin by taking an FDA-approved medication that helps reduce cravings for opioids. Common medications include Methadone, Suboxone, and Vivitrol.
Many people who have overcome heroin addiction mention that medication-assisted treatment helped them most in the beginning of their treatment, when withdrawal symptoms were the most severe.
Heroin detox can be a challenging process to go through, especially alone. Therefore, we advise to undergo treatment through a heroin detox program with a medically trained addiction team. As mentioned, detox is just the first step toward addiction recovery. You’ll want to be sure you follow detox with a treatment center that can provide specialized help to get your life back on track addition-free.
If you only treat the withdrawal symptoms during detox, but don’t follow up with long term treatment, you may not recover as fully as you’d like. By attending a treatment center, you’ll be able to receive help from trained experts that can help you address underlying issues that may have led to addiction in the first place. You’ll also learn valuable relapse prevention, coping, and life skills that can help you build a strong recovery.
You can choose residential (inpatient) or outpatient treatment as the next step after detox. Residential treatment is for those who want to stay at the facility for the duration of their treatment. Outpatient treatment occurs at a facility in the community. The time for treatment will vary for each person. Typically, people start with a 28-day stay at a residential treatment center and collaborate with their primary counselor to decide the next steps.
If you’re struggling with an addiction to heroin, don’t hesitate to reach out for help today. Getting started on your unique recovery journey is as simple as a phone call. Begin our heroin detox program and get the care you serve. Our trained addiction recovery specialists are standing by to address any concerns or questions.
Here at SOBA, we offer a full continuum of care that treats every stage of addiction recovery. Whether you desire detox, residential, outpatient, intensive outpatient, or partial treatment, we’ve got you covered. You’ll receive treatment in three phases that help you build a strong foundation and incrementally help you gain a greater sense of self-sufficiency.
It’s time for you to overcome heroin addiction once and for all and go on to live the kind of life you truly desire. Call us today.
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