Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms Day 2
The thrill of taking drugs draws you in and makes you want to see what it feels like, heroin is no different.For many first time drug users, they don’t plan to become addicts, they naively think “I’m different I won’t get addicted” but the truth is you never know. Heroin is a powerful drug that inhibits the receptors that control pain, therefore you feel and intense rush of pleasure. After a while you find yourself needing more and more of the drug in order to experience the same sensation as before. After a short while you don’t even recognize the person you have become and your life is now centered solely on obtaining more heroin. The heroin epidemic in America is at the highest numbers ever, and the deaths continue to rise on a daily basis. If you need to speak with someone about a treatment program call 1-888-325-2454
This is the stark reality for most heroin addicts, and unfortunately the number of abusers of heroin
is on the rise. This widespread usage has resulted in increased concern over the best techniques to
educate persons on the dangers of heroin and help drug users get on a path to recovery.
Statistics from drug rehabilitation centers show that heroin users are increasingly coming from more
affluent neighborhoods; this has shed light on the nature of opium addictions. Due to the widespread
usage of prescription painkillers, persons from more affluent neighborhoods develop an addiction to
opium and slowly transition to using heroin to feed their habit (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
Heroin is an opiate drug produced from morphine (obtained naturally from the poppy seed plant) which is used medicinally to ease pain but is more often than not used as a recreational drug. The abuse of heroin is no longer localized to urban areas and affected an approximate 435,000 persons in 2014 with a concerning number of persons in the 18 – 25 age group (Medline Plus) (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
Furthermore, in 2013 the number of deaths in the United States caused from heroin usage totaled to
8,257 which was twice the number of deaths in 2010 (Jennifer Hinners). These statistics are concerning
to say the least and indicate and need for targeted educational programs to inform persons on the
dangers of the drug. There have been more stringent measures implemented making it more difficult to
acquire prescription painkillers, however there is more to be done to control access to these drugs.
When heroin addicts restrain from using the rug for a period of time, they experience symptoms of
physical and psychological dependence on the drug known as withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms
can be excruciating; causing addicts to relapse which in turn serves as a deterrent for seeking
professional treatment options.
Heroin withdrawal symptoms can start as soon as 6 – 12 hours after the last drug dosage and may continue for a period of a 7-10 days (Addiction Blog). Heroin detox day 1 will be difficult, but over the next few days it will get progressively worse. During the first 1-2 days after drug usages, addicts typically experience joint pain or muscle aches, diarrhea, insomnia, and loss of appetite, increased heart rate and blood pressure and in some cases panic attacks. Physically these symptoms can take a toll on your body, addicts going through withdrawal after 24 – 36 hours often appear moody, agitated and disoriented (Addiction Blog).
It is important to note that withdrawal symptoms affect each individual differently depending on a range of factor such as the duration and frequency of previous drug usage, the amount of the drugs ingested as well as the user’s mental and medical history. Persons can often suffer from depression or anxiety or undergo extreme stress due to toll of withdrawal symptoms.
In some cases withdrawal symptoms can be acute and may take several weeks to fully subside.
Developing an approach to overcome these symptoms is of utmost important as it hastens the start of the recovery process and aids in helping addicts reclaim their lives.
With the advancements in medicine, there are a range of treatment options available to addicts looking to recover from heroin addiction. The typical process of rehabilitation involves completing medical
detoxification whereby the toxins brought on by heroin usage are removed from the body. The process
can take anywhere from 7- 10 days on average but longer in more severe cases (American Addiction
Centers). Doctors generally first complete a medical detoxification and then begin the process of therapyor counselling to aid in the physiological and mental repair. Medicines such methadone, buprenorphine, clonidine or naltrexone are frequently used to aid in easing the symptoms brought on by withdrawal process and preventing future relapse.
Completing treatment at a drug habitation center can be highly effective as it can be completed in a short time-frame and progress is constantly being measured in a controlled environment. (American Addiction Centers). Due to the damage done to the brain from heroin usage, most addicts will have to rewire their thoughts and actions in order to limit exposure to drug usage and also wean off the physical and mental dependence on the drugs. Therefore while medical prescriptions are important to the recovery process they must be used in conjunction with counselling and therapy (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
Addiction is a disease that often brings up feelings of shame and regret in drug abusers. It can feel as though you have dug a hole so far in the ground that there is no way out at this point. There can also be a colossal feeling of loneliness due to isolation from your close friends and family. However at any given point in time, remember you have the power to take control of your life; it won’t be easy but it is possible.
The first step is to look at your life and be honest with yourself. Do you recognize the person you see in the mirror? Are you happy with the path that you are on? After a while you find yourself so mentally and physiologically dependent on the drugs that your whole life revolves around getting your next hit. Heroin in particular is especially damaging because it impairs the chemical wiring of the brain, recovery requires both medical and counselling treatment.
The withdrawal symptoms make it hard to move on past drug usage and you quickly find yourself in a cycle of repeated drug usage. Don’t wait until you have lost everything before you take that step to recovery. There are a range of treatment options that are available to help you out of the situation you are in. Take that first step to ask for help no matter the resistance you feel, at the end of the day there is more to your life than drugs.
Medline Plus. Opiate and opioid withdrawal. 4 April 2016. Website:
https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000949.htm. 13 May 2016.National Institute on Drug Abuse. What are the immediate (short term effects) of drug use? November
2014. Website: https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/heroin/scopeheroin-
use-in-united-states. 13 May 2016.
—. What are the treatments for heroin addiction? November 2014. Website:
addiction. 13 May 2016.
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13 May 2016.