Heroin addiction is a life-threatening disease that requires immediate attention. Landmark Recovery of Louisville uses science-backed treatment to help you overcome heroin addiction and achieve long-lasting sobriety.
Heroin is an illegal opiate (more commonly known as an “opioid”) that is derived from the morphine produced by opium poppy plants. 1 This highly addictive drug acts on opioid receptors within the nervous system, interfering with the brain’s ability to perceive pain and providing the user with a surge of euphoria followed by a back-and-forth state of fading in and out of consciousness (going “on the nod”). 2 Heroin depresses critical central nervous system functions, and large doses can cause a slowed heart rate, shallow breathing, unconsciousness, and death.
People who regularly use heroin often develop a tolerance to the drug, which means that increasingly higher amounts of the drug are needed to achieve the same effects as before. Over time, heroin abuse leads to the development of physical dependence and full-blown addiction. 2
The use of heroin among Kentucky residents has drastically increased during the current opioid crisis, as individuals suffering from prescription opioid addiction have turned to heroin as a cheaper and easier-to-find substitute drug. 3 According to findings from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 1 in 250 Kentuckians used heroin within the past year. 4 Heroin abuse is most common among young adults (aged 18 to 25), with around 1 in 150 reporting past-year use. Tragically, heroin use has also gained popularity among Kentucky adolescents. Recent data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System indicate that nearly 1 in 55 Kentucky high school students admit that they tried heroin at least one time. 5
The effects of heroin abuse have devastated countless lives in Louisville, and throughout Kentucky. The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky reports that 1 in 5 Kentuckians has family members or friends who have problems related to heroin and nearly 1 out of 4 adults living in Louisville knows someone with a heroin problem. 6 In 2019, there were 166 heroin-related overdose deaths recorded in Kentucky. 7 Unfortunately, the social and financial burdens of the COVID-19 pandemic have been shown to significantly increase the risk of heroin overdose among Kentuckians already struggling with opioid addiction. 8
Every year, thousands of individuals benefit from heroin treatment at Kentucky substance abuse treatment centers. Heroin addiction was reported during 3,607 treatment admissions in 2019, accounting for 1 out of every 6 admissions to Kentucky drug rehab centers. 9 Landmark Recovery of Louisville is proud to offer proven heroin addiction treatment to the Jefferson County and broader Kentucky community. Our local heroin treatment center, conveniently located minutes from Interstate 65 in the city of Louisville, provides medical detox services and evidence-based therapies that can help you stop using heroin and resume living a healthy, productive, addiction-free life.
Medical Detox from Heroin
Before you can start any form of heroin treatment, you must first halt all drug use and go through detox to flush out all traces of heroin from your system. For many individuals, especially those who developed a physical heroin dependence, the heroin detox process can be the most difficult stage of recovery as you will be highly tempted to resume use as a way to delay or otherwise decrease the extremely unpleasant effects of withdrawal. To give yourself the best chance at getting clean from heroin without succumbing to relapse, we advise detoxing under the continuous supervision of doctors and nurses at a professional detox center.
Landmark Recovery of Louisville’s medical detox program can safely guide you through withdrawal from heroin at our state-of-the-art detox facility. Our highly-trained medical personnel will keep you as comfortable as possible with around-the-clock supportive care and FDA-approved medications, such as methadone and buprenorphine, that can help manage withdrawal symptoms and relieve intense cravings.11 You will also be closely monitored throughout the entire detox process for signs of medical complications, such as persistent vomiting and diarrhea, that can become life-threatening if not properly addressed. 12
What to Expect During Heroin Withdrawal
If you are addicted to heroin you will likely experience severe pain and discomfort when you quit use and your body adjusts to functioning without the drug. Symptoms of withdrawal can begin as early as a few hours after heroin was last taken and may include: 10
Therapy and Counseling
After completing detox, you will be ready to transition into the therapy stage of heroin treatment. Landmark Recovery of Louisville takes an integrated approach to heroin addiction treatment and your individualized heroin treatment program will include a combination of behavioral and pharmacological therapies.
Medications developed to treat heroin addiction will be used to help you abstain from heroin use by easing cravings and other physical symptoms that can prompt a person to relapse. Research also shows that these medications increase retention in treatment programs and can play a critical role in achieving long-term recovery from heroin addiction. 13
During individual and group counseling sessions you will participate in a variety of behavioral therapies to help identify the root causes of your addiction and promote the positive thought patterns and behaviors needed to overcome future cravings and maintain sobriety. Some of the behavioral therapies that have been effectively used to treat heroin addiction and help prevent relapse include cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, contingency management, and motivational incentives. 14
Landmark Recovery has a wide range of heroin treatment programs for those who want to quit heroin use and overcome their addiction. Please call our Louisville treatment center at 502-309-2675 to learn more about our medical detox and heroin treatment programs.
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1) United States Drug Enforcement Agency. (2020).https://www.dea.gov/factsheets/heroin
2) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/heroin
3) Kuehn BM. Journal of the American Medical Association. 2014;312(2):118–119. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2020).https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/1886185
4) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2020).https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2017-2018-nsduh-state-specific-tables
5) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020).https://nccd.cdc.gov/Youthonline/App/Results.aspx?LID=KY
6) Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. (2019). 2018https://www.healthy-ky.org/res/images/resources/KHIP-substance-use-FINAL.pdf
7) Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy. (2020).https://odcp.ky.gov/Documents/2019%20Kentucky%20Overdose%20Fatality%20Report%20FINAL1.pdf
8) Slavova S, Rock P, Bush HM, Quesinberry D, Walsh SL.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7351024/
9) 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
10) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2015).https://store.samhsa.gov/product/TIP-45-Detoxification-and-Substance-Abuse-Treatment/SMA15-4131
11) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction/how-do-medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction-work
12) Darke S, Larney S, Farrell M.https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/add.13512
13) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/heroin/what-are-treatments-heroin-use-disorder
14) National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020).https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/evidence-based-approaches-to-drug-addiction-treatment/behavioral-therapies/contingency-management-interventions-motivational-incentives