Heroin related overdoses kill roughly 15,000 Americans every year. Because of this addictive drug’s power and reach, everyone should learn the signs of heroin abuse and addiction. Armed with this knowledge, you may be able to recognize someone’s heroin addiction and help save their life.
At 2nd Chance Treatment Center in Phoenix, Glendale, and Gilbert, Arizona, our team of addiction recovery specialists provide comprehensive outpatient treatment to help heroin users get their lives back on track.
Like other diseases, heroin addiction comes with its own set of physical symptoms. These appear almost immediately when someone injects the substance intravenously. Other methods of heroin consumption may cause more delayed symptoms.
The common physical symptoms of heroin use include the following:
Sudden changes in a loved one’s behavior could be a sign of heroin abuse. Behavioral changes can be due to both the physical effects of the substance and a constant desire for more. Communicating with family and friends, past interests, and career goals can go by the wayside as their cravings grow for the substance.
Behavioral changes that might suggest heroin addiction include:
Being able to identify heroin and its associated paraphernalia can also help you identify a possible heroin addiction. People addicted to heroin normally use tools, including syringes, spoons, lighters, and thick rubber bands. The drug can vary in appearance, but it’s usually a crumbly powder that ranges from off-white to dark brown or black.
Heroin addiction is highly dangerous. Using the drug can lead to an overdose or an infection from shared needles. Users can also suffer organ damage from heroin’s chemical effects, and pregnant women who use heroin put their fetuses at risk for miscarriage or low birthweight.
Heroin can also wreak havoc on a user’s personal life. Because the addiction takes priority over everything else, things that were once important, such as hobbies or friends, can become forgotten. Heroin addiction can also make it hard for users to hold jobs or save money.
If you discover that a loved one is abusing heroin, encourage them to speak with a doctor or health specialist they trust. Our doctors can help addicts receive the help they need. To learn more, book an appointment online or over the phone with 2nd Chance Treatment Center today.