Successful rehabilitation from heroin addiction, as with other substance use disorders, requires proven treatments and supportive care on the path toward recovery. The Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas rehab center incorporates evidence-based therapies into individualized heroin rehab programs tailored to meet your specific treatment needs.
Heroin is an illicit, highly addictive opioid drug derived from morphine, a natural substance produced by opium poppy plants. 1 The drug, which can appear as a black tar or white or dark brown powder, is also known by the street names smack, junk, brown sugar, black tar, white horse, china white, thunder, big H, and hell dust. 2 Depending on its form, heroin may be injected, smoked, sniffed, or snorted.
Heroin rapidly enters the brain and causes a fast, intense rush. People who use heroin experience a rapid surge of euphoria that is usually followed by a warm flushing of the skin, drowsiness, clouded mental function, dry mouth, nausea, severe itching, and a heavy feeling in the arms and legs. 3 Heroin also slows down your heartbeat and breathing, sometimes to the point where it can cause brain damage, a coma, or death.
Heroin “cut” with additives such as sugar, starch, or powdered milk can clog blood vessels supplying the liver, lungs, kidneys, and brain, often leading to inflammation, infection, and permanent organ damage. 4 The addition of synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl, amplifies the potency of heroin and increases the risk of a fatal overdose. 5 Heroin also increases the risk of acquiring HIV, hepatitis B and C, and other infectious diseases due to the common practice of needle sharing among heroin users. 6
Over time, repeated heroin use will lead to increased tolerance and dependence, making you need larger and more frequent doses of the drug just to feel normal. 7 Chronic heroin use also changes the way your brain functions and increases the risk of developing an addiction. Someone addicted to heroin will continue to seek and use the drug despite many negative consequences to their life and health.
Results from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health in the United States indicate that approximately 0.3% of Nevada residents aged 12 or over used heroin in the past year. 8 Heroin use is most common among young adults, with 0.8% of Nevadans aged 18 to 25 reporting past-year use. Among Nevada’s adolescents, 2.2% of high school students admit that they tried heroin at least one time in their life. 9
Heroin abuse has devastated individual lives and entire communities in Las Vegas, and across the state of Nevada. In 2018, there were 342 emergency room visits, 104 inpatient hospital admissions, and 106 overdose deaths related to heroin overdose. 10
Heroin is widely abused among individuals with substance use disorders seeking substance abuse treatment in Nevada. In 2019, heroin addiction was reported during 630 admissions to Nevada rehab centers (accounting for 5.7% of all treatment admissions). 11
Heroin addiction is an isolating and destructive disease that can quickly lead to overdose and death. Research shows that behavioral treatment, in combination with medication, can help people stop using heroin and recover from their addiction. 12 The heroin rehab program at Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas provides the tools and support that are needed to overcome heroin, get your life back, and set you on the long-term road to recovery.
Detox is the first step toward overcoming heroin addiction. During this process, all traces of heroin are flushed from your system, helping to prepare your body and mind for rehab treatment. Individuals who are physically dependent on heroin will likely experience severe withdrawal as their body adjusts to not having the drug present. Symptoms of heroin withdrawal may include: 13
Detox is often the most dangerous stage of recovery, as there are serious health complications that can arise when long-term heroin use is abruptly discontinued. These include severe vomiting and diarrhea that can lead to dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, and heart failure if not properly addressed. 14
Landmark Recovery’s medical detox program in Las Vegas provides the safest way for you to get through the pain and discomfort of heroin withdrawal. While detoxing in the comfortable and secure environment of our Las Vegas heroin rehab facility, patients receive expert medical care and around-the-clock monitoring from our team of clinical specialists and our treatment team. Our supportive staff also provide nutritional supplements and medications that can help manage cravings and alleviate symptoms of withdrawal.
Following detox, you will be ready to transition into the therapy phase of heroin rehab treatment. Depending on the length and severity of heroin addiction and any unique challenges such as a co-occurring addiction or mental health disorder, your customized heroin rehab program can be provided through a combination of residential treatment, a partial hospitalization program, or intensive outpatient services.
There are several medications currently approved by the FDA for the treatment of heroin addiction, including buprenorphine, methadone, naltrexone, suboxone, and lofexidine. 12 These drug options, which may be used at different stages of your heroin rehab and recovery, will greatly increase the chance of long-term recovery and help reduce the risk of relapse and overdose.
Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas incorporates a variety of evidence-based behavioral therapies into our heroin addiction rehab programs, including cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, contingency management, family behavior therapy, rational emotive behavior therapy, and dialectical behavioral therapy. 12 During individual and group therapy sessions, patients will work closely with a dedicated counselor to identify underlying causes of heroin addiction, modify unhealthy behaviors, and develop new thought patterns and coping skills needed to overcome cravings and prevent relapse.
Heroin is an extremely dangerous substance, putting the lives of the people who use it, and their families and loved ones, in serious jeopardy.
If you’re in the Las Vegas or Southern Nevada area, and want help to start living a drug-free life, please call us at (725) 217-9910 to learn more about the different addiction treatment services that we offer.
We can help prepare you to live beyond addiction. Talk to a recovery specialist today.
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1.) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/heroin
2.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2018).https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Teens-The-Truth-About-Heroin/PEP18-02
3.) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/heroin/what-are-immediate-short-term-effects-heroin-use
4.) Drug Enforcement Administration. (2020).https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/Heroin-2020_1.pdf
5.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2013).https://www.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/programs_campaigns/medication_assisted/dear_colleague_letters/2013-colleague-letter-fentanyl-analogues.pdf
6.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (2020).https://www.drugabuse.gov/drug-topics/opioids/opioid-summaries-by-state/nevada-opioid-involved-deaths-related-harms
7.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2018).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/heroin/what-are-long-term-effects-heroin-use
8.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2020).https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2017-2018-nsduh-state-specific-tables
9.) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020).https://nccd.cdc.gov/Youthonline/App/Results.aspx?LID=NV
10.) Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Analytics. (2020).http://dpbh.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/dpbhnvgov/content/Resources/opioids/Opioid%20Surveillance%20Report%20-%20January%202020.pdf
11.) Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Treatment Episode Data Set. (2020).https://wwwdasis.samhsa.gov/webt/newmapv1.htm
12.) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/heroin/what-are-treatments-heroin-use-disorder
13.) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2015).https://store.samhsa.gov/product/TIP-45-Detoxification-and-Substance-Abuse-Treatment/SMA15-4131
14.) Addiction. (2017).https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/add.13512