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The dangers of heroin are real

Lana Bandoim's picture

Abuse of any illicit drug is dangerous and unhealthy, but few are as destructive as heroin. Whether you have tried it once, or it is an addiction you cannot seem to escape, it is crucial that you seek help immediately. This addiction can destroy your relationships and your life.


The heroin problem

Heroin is considered to be an opioid drug and is made from poppy plants. It is usually created from the Asian poppy plant and is seen as a white or brown powder. However, it can also be seen as a black sticky material that is commonly called “black tar heroin.”

“Is the fear of withdrawal keeping you from putting an end to your heroin addiction?” asks Georgia Drug Detox. It is important to remember that you are not alone. However, you may not have much time before this dangerous drug damages or ends your life. It is crucial to seek help and treatment before it is too late.

Data from the CDC reveals that heroin use has increased by 63 percent in the past 11 years. In 2013, there were an estimated 517,000 active heroin users. That same year, 8,200 people died because of an overdose. Heroin use is at an all-time high among younger demographics which signals a problem that is getting worse and will continue to persist in the future.

How heroin interacts with the body

Users take heroin because it provides an initial euphoria. Once the heroin enters the blood stream, it creates a quick rush that is normally followed by a warm feeling. Users may also experience flushing of the skin. After this initial rush ends, the user becomes sleepy for several hours. However, breathing and heart rate may slow down.

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After several hours have passed since taking the drug, the effects begin to decrease, and the body craves more heroin. If the user does not get another fix, they begin to experience withdrawal symptoms. The symptoms can include anxiety, insomnia, depression, itching, constipation, weakness, memory loss and cold sweats. In addition, the user may experience diarrhea, cramps, seizures and nausea. It is also possible to have unstable moods and lack an appetite.

Long-term effects of heroin

Although the effects of heroin may create a sense of euphoria for a short period of time, the long-term side effects are extremely dangerous and debilitating. In addition to the withdrawal symptoms, heroin can cause severe damage to the body. This damage may be permanent and impossible to reverse in some cases.

One of the biggest problems is heroin’s ability to change the brain. “As heroin closely resembles brain neurotransmitters in chemical structure, the more a person uses the less dopamine the brain manufacturers on its own,” Addictions.com points out. “Over time, the brain becomes unable to manufacture needed dopamine supplies at all, which accounts for the ongoing withdrawal effects a person feels, even after getting high.”

Heroin’s damage is not limited to the brain. Users may also suffer from collapsed veins and bad teeth. They may experience a weaker immune system, memory issues, kidney damage and liver disease. They are also more likely to have bacterial infections.

In addition, heroin users are at a higher risk of contracting HIV and hepatitis C. This is because both diseases are transmitted through contact with bodily fluids or blood. When needles or other injection items are shared, disease is more likely to spread.

The dangers are real

There is nothing casual about heroin use. Even using heroin once can seriously damage your health and may lead to death. If you are a heroin user or know someone who is addicted to this harmful opioid, then it is crucial that you get help now. Waiting is not an option with this addiction. You do not want to become part of a statistic that doctors and teachers use to dissuade others from using heroin in the future.