28 May Is Heroin Detox Right for You?
If you are battling an addiction to opioids or heroin and have already tried to quit using on your own, you have probably experienced unpleasant or painful withdrawal symptoms – such as fever, body aches, muscle cramps and insomnia – that drove you to begin taking drugs again.
Attempting an at-home detox for substances as potent and addictive as heroin can be not only uncomfortable, but incredibly dangerous. That’s why safely detoxing from heroin under qualified medical supervision is often your first step toward beating heroin abuse and beginning a recovery program.
From Opioid Use to Heroin Addiction
Prescription opioids like OxyContin derive from the same source as heroin: the opium poppy flower. Taking OxyContin, even under a doctor’s instructions, can still lead to a tolerance and then to an addiction. This drug produces a powerful feeling of euphoria that short-circuits the brain’s reward pathways over time.
As the devastating effects of the prescription opioid crisis began to be more widely publicized, many states started implementing correspondingly stricter laws on who could obtain opioids and how long people could use them. In an effort to prevent people from becoming addicted to opioids, 15 states have limited opioid prescriptions to a seven-day supply. Other states, like Florida, are even harsher, imposing a three- to four-day cap on initial prescriptions.
For some people who had already fallen prey to an opioid addiction, these restrictive laws caused them to seek an illicit source of the drug that is more readily available, which is one reason the link between prescription opioid use and heroin addiction has come under increased scrutiny. In one survey, an astonishing 80 percent of heroin users reported misusing prescription painkillers first.
Long-Term Effects of Heroin Use
After the initial euphoric high, using heroin quickly produces an intensely relaxed feeling. People often say their limbs feel heavy, and they may alternate between conscious and semi-conscious states — a phenomenon known as being “on the nod.” Breathing may slow down markedly, which is how many accidental overdoses occur.
Misusing heroin over the long term eventually causes complications with nearly every organ and system in the body, including:
- Digestive problems, such as constipation and stomach cramps
- Sexual dysfunction (men) or an irregular menstrual cycle (women)
- Mood disorders such as depression
- Difficulty sleeping, concentrating and making sound decisions
- Respiratory issues; increased likelihood of pneumonia
- Kidney and liver disease
- Heart failure
The First Stage of Heroin Treatment
Reclaiming your health after heroin abuse requires you to make a fresh start, and detox is your first step in getting medically stable and clearing your body and mind of harmful chemicals. During detox, trained addiction specialists will provide medical monitoring to help manage severe withdrawal symptoms and reduce drug cravings.
Detoxing from heroin can take anywhere from a few days to more than a week. How long it will take you to detox? That depends on a variety of factors, including your overall health, how long you have been using, how high your tolerance is and whether you have been taking other drugs in addition to heroin.
Connect With Us Today
If you’re seeking help for a heroin addiction, Ken Seeley Detox is ready to take your call. Our comfortable Palm Springs detox facility offers a peaceful, home-like environment where you can undergo medical detox and begin planning the later phases of your recovery journey once you are stabilized. Don’t allow heroin to steal any more time from your life. Start by calling our admissions team at 866-376-4452 or contacting us online.