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Understanding Heroin Addiction and its Treatment

Heroin is a pain relieving narcotic drug made from morphine. It is frequently used illegally to produce euphoria. Diamorphine hydrochloride is another name for the compound and is highly addictive.

It is extracted from the seed pods of numerous opium poppy plants growing in  Asia, Mexico, and Colombia. Heroin is found in white, brown, or black powdered forms. People usually start taking heroin by smoking or snorting and then over a period of time they develop dependence and start directly injecting it into their veins. It entails the possibility of developing chronic diseases like HIV/AIDS and hepatitis as well as exposure to and infection with blood-borne viruses.The illness of heroin addiction is characterized by modifications in the brain and behavior brought on by heroin use.

 Signs and Symptoms of Heroine Addiction

Early on, an opioid use problem may not show any signs, particularly if the user is making considerable efforts to conceal their usage. Over a period of time the symptoms get difficult to hide and become recognizable. These  signs and symptoms include:

Physical changes like-

  • agitation or drowsiness
  • Speech impairment
  • Drowsiness
  • Runny nose
  • Memory loss
  • Pupil contraction
  • Loss of awareness of pain
  • Reduced senses

 Social and behavioural changes like-

  • Change in friend circles
  • Change in looks
  • Social isolation
  • Major mood swings
  • Often getting into fights
  • Financial issues
  • Drop in academic performance

 Effects of Herione

Heroin enters the brain quickly and attaches to opioid receptors on neurons, particularly to those responsible for mediating pain and pleasure sensations.

There can be short term as well as long term effects of heroine usage depending on its usage over the period of time.

 Short term effects of heroine include -

  • Dryness in mouth
  • Heaviness in body
  • Vomiting and Nausea
  • Loss of critical thinking
  • Itching
  • Low respiration rate
  • Low Blood Pressure
  • Warmness on skin

Long term effects of heroine include -

  • Insomnia
  • Kidney and liver disorders
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Cardiac issues
  • Constipation
  • Lung diseases
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Irregular menstruation in women
  • Male sexual dysfunction
  • Respiratory problems
  • Collapsed veins from injection
  • Nasal tissue damage from snorting
  • Mental Disorders and brain damage

Other problems -

HIV and the hepatitis C (HCV) virus are highly contagious among those who inject substances like heroin through needles and syringes. Sharing needles or other injection drug use equipment can result in direct contact with blood or other bodily fluids, which results in spreading of these infections. 

 How can it be treated

The use of heroin can be reduced or eliminated with the help of a variety of treatments, including medications and behavioral therapy. Each patient has unique demands, therefore it's critical to match the best treatment strategy to their needs.

Medicines are being created to help with the withdrawal process.

  • Lofexidine is a non-opioid medication approved by the FDA which is intended to lessen opioid withdrawal symptoms.

Some medications containing opioids are also used which are safe, efficient, and life-saving. These medications interact with the same opioid brain receptors that heroin does, but they have different outcomes.

  •  Methadone is an opioid drug which is used in order to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. It binds the opioid receptors and activates them to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
  •  Buprenorphine does the same function of opioid receptors by partially activating opioid receptors.
  • Another opioid receptor antagonist is naltrexone which stops heroin from binding to those receptors, hence blocking its effects.

 Seek help from Simran shri rehabilitation center in Hapur 

It could take time to break the habit. Some people need several tries before they can permanently quit using heroin. But perseverance and commitment are tremendously helpful in promoting recovery. The first step in that process is realizing that you, or someone you care about, has a problem with substance misuse. Recognize the problem and seek help from Simran Shri Rehabilitation Center. With proper medication, treatment and therapies we have helped hundreds of people in their recovery. Let our experts guide you for the process.

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