Heroin is a tough drug to recover from, but with Landmark Recovery and the resources we give our patients, you’ll make a full recovery in no time. Treatment of substance abuse is our specialty, and we aim to treat our patients fully and effectively. Our goal is to save as many lives as possible, starting with you.
Heroin is an opioid drug that comes from the opium poppy. The opium poppy is a plant that’s been harvested to some degree for the last 10,000 years. Poppy plants have been used as an analgesic agent for the last 3,500 years. Morphine was the first and is still regarded as the gold-standard opioid drug made from the resin of the opium poppy.
First isolated in a lab in 1806, morphine began to be misused widely after the introduction of the hypodermic needle in 1853. In 1895, Bayer began marketing a version of heroin for cough suppression; little did they know what they had done. Until the Harrison Narcotic Act was passed in 1914, opioids were commonly found in over-the-counter supplements with snake oil ingredients. Hundreds of thousands had gotten hooked by that point.
Heroin works as an analgesic, which is a substance that blocks pain in its users. It binds to the opioid receptors in the body and is three times more potent than morphine. Due to increased fat solubility, heroin can cross the blood-brain faster than morphine, meaning that effects can be felt much faster. Heroin can be blocked by opioid antagonists like Narcan, which blocks the ability of opioid receptors to absorb opioid substances. The addictive effects of heroin statistically follow most users all their life, leading to the necessity of robust treatment programs and accountability to ensure relapses don’t occur.
Heroin affects the user by inducing what users have described as an intense euphoria, almost sexual in nature, that blocks pain and creates a relaxing state in which you can exist for a time before the comedown. When heroin is taken, it lowers the breathing and heart rate; this can have catastrophic effects if an overdose happens without an opioid antagonist being available. Because some of the opioid receptors in the brain are in the medulla’s chemoreceptor trigger zone, nausea can be triggered, causing the user to vomit.
Ironically, opioid drugs like heroin are super-effective antidiarrheals, causing significant constipation and other gastrointestinal issues. Heroin can cause hormonal abnormalities in long-term users, including lowered testosterone in men and reproductive issues in women. Due to the high amount of tolerance that can be achieved when abusing opioids, heroin use can cause cross-tolerance in which other opioids aren’t effective.
Withdrawal from heroin is rough. Massive dysphoria can occur, accompanied by high levels of depression. Insomnia and irritability show up in withdrawing individuals’ personalities. Gastrointestinal overcompensation can happen, causing diarrhea.
In the state of Connecticut, heroin is abused at a relatively low rate. The current percentage of the state population that’s used heroin in the last year for adults is 0.36%. The highest rate of heroin use in the state is 18- to 25-year-olds at a rate of 0.38% per year. Any number that’s non-zero is too high, which is where Landmark Recovery comes in.
At our facilities, Landmark Recovery offers the very best in heroin treatment services. We offer both outpatient and residential treatment paths depending on the level of your medical need. In addition to this, we offer medication-assisted treatment for patients who have more severe withdrawal symptoms to make their recovery process more efficient and easier in the long run.
While here, we offer counseling and therapy to treat the root causes of addiction as part of our holistic treatment program. 12-step programs, including AA and NA, are available for patients to maximize their recovery gains with. After you leave our care and supervision, we give graduates access to a nationwide alumni association so they can have access to as many post-treatment educational opportunities as possible.
Interested in learning more about how we can effectively treat heroin addiction? Give Landmark Recovery a call at (860) 485-7361 with all your questions. We want to treat you and your loved ones.
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1) Landmark Recovery.https://landmarkrecovery.com/
2) Julien's Primer of Drug Action. 2019.https://store.macmillanlearning.com/us/product/Juliens-Primer-of-Drug-Action/p/1319015859
3) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020). Heroin.https://www.drugabuse.gov/drug-topics/commonly-used-drugs-charts#heroin
4) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (2021).https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2018-2019-nsduh-state-specific-tables