Heroin is considered to be both the most addictive and deadly drug in use today. Sometimes called “the queen of all drugs” heroin sows harm and devastation everywhere it goes. A derivative of opium, many addicts first started abusing painkillers before moving into heroin. Heroin can be smoked or injected via needle directly into the user’s blood supply. Long-term use can result in irreversible brain damage, behavioral imbalances, and death. From 2001 to 2014, heroin overdose deaths rose 600%. This is due in large part to the increase in availability due to the cheap price of heroin compared to other drugs. Marijuana is the only illegal drug that is used more in the United States.
Due to the rising epidemic of heroin use and overdose deaths, the treatment plans are intense and rapid. Similar to opium treatments, heroin addicts are immediately cutoff from further usage instead of being weaned off while admitted in a medical facility. Inpatient centers are a necessity during the initial detoxification process. Withdrawals from heroin are excruciating, and suicidal thoughts can run rampant. It is highly advised that a recovering heroin addict is placed under constant care during the first weeks or months of removing heroin from their life. Self-harm as well as harmful thoughts about others have been reported on a regular basis, and being in a safe environment is the best option for both an addict and those around them.
A new medication, Suboxone, has been making large gains in the recovery effort. This medication is intended to block any desires for heroin, as well as ease the body in the withdrawal process. Detoxing from heroin can take quite some time, and a large number of addicts that have left their programs too soon have resulted in overdosing deaths when they immediately seek out heroin to fill their urges. If you or a loved one is entering in a heroin addiction treatment program, please expect to be admitted for 1 to 6 months until your body has fully adjusted.
Mental therapy paired with counseling are required to counter the strong cravings a sober patient will experience. Being mentally prepared for the uncomfortable future will give a patient the best chance possible to permanently live free of the deadly substance. Alerting friends and family members of the current struggle and requesting that frequent check-ins occur throughout the recovery process results in accountability, as well as a safety net should a relapse and overdose occur. If a check-in time is missed, a friend or family member will be able to alert the emergency medical services that a potential heroin overdose may have occurred, and provide them with your last known location.
Counseling, medications, therapy, and group support can create a comprehensive treatment plan to beat back the queen of drugs. Recognizing that an addiction is occurring before daily heroin use happens is key. Painkiller abuse will lead to heroin addiction; it is only a matter of time. Heroin is a hard-hitting drug, and it needs to be hit hard back.
Relapse is common with heroin addicts, so long-term family support and professional therapy serve as crucial pillars to a successful recovery. The longer a sober-addict is able to prevent a relapse after leaving therapy, the higher chance they have of not relapsing in the long-term future.
Aggressively fighting back against a heroin addiction will be a life or death battle that will literally save your life when you break free. Reach out to someone today before you become another statistic. You aren’t alone in this struggle with heroin, and there will be people supporting you each step of the way.
Let others know about your successful recovery story below to encourage them on their own life-saving journey.