Drug Facts: Heroin

What do you know about heroin? Do you know enough to get at least 5 out of 10 in a trivia game? Better yet, can you help a friend who is an addict by giving them the right information or even understand your own addiction to this illegal substance?

Here are some facts you should know about heroin.

What is it?

  1. It is a highly, physically addictive drug

  2. Its made from morphine

  3. Morphine comes from opium’s seedpod – the poppy plant originally from Asia

  4. It acts as a depressant

  5. It inhibits your Central Nervous System

  6. It has other names such as Ska, Junk, H, Horse, Mud, Skag, Smack, Big H, Dope, Brown Sugar, Blacktar, Poppy, Hell dust.

  7. Other street names also include China White, Thunder, Chiva, Train, and Dead on arrival, among others.

How it looks

  • The purest form is a white powder, but less pure types can be off-white, brown or even black hence, the nickname ‘Blacktar.’

How heroin is abused

  • Injecting, smoking or snorting

Effects of use

  1. Gives one a euphoric feeling or a ‘rush’

  2. Dry mouth

  3. Rubbery and heavy legs

  4. Dulled emotions and reduced mental capacity

  5. The effects last 3-4 hours after administration of a dose

The Health Risk

  1. Collapsed veins

  2. Abscesses

  3. Liver disease

  4. Cellulitis

  5. Pulmonary complications such as pneumonia

  6. Valve and heart lining infection

  7. Fatal overdose is highly likely

  8. Risk of contracting other infections such as HIV/AIDS

Physical Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Insomnia

  • Cold flashes

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Restlessness

  • Muscle jerks, especially in the legs

  • Bone and muscle pain

  • After the last dose these symptoms will peak from 48 to 72 hours

  • The withdrawal symptoms will usually abate after several days

  • For very heavy users who are dependent on heroin and have poor health, sudden withdrawal may be fatal

  • Tolerance develops as one uses it regularly – which means that with time, more heroin is needed to get the same ‘rush’

  • If heroin is used by pregnant women the consequences include reduced birth weight

  • If the drug is not pure then other additives may lead to ones blood vessels clogging – the result is infected or dead cell patches in ones vital organs such as the brain, kidneys, lungs or liver

  • The heroin can be mixed with starch, sugar or quinine, and can also be mixed with strychnine – a poison/pesticide used to kill rodents and birds

  • In overdoses, shallow breathing, coma, convulsions or death

Heroin Addiction Treatment

It can include behavioral therapy and medication

Some of the medications include methadone, naloxone/naltrexone and buprenorphine

If you have a problem with addiction, seek help today by calling 855-441-2449 and get healthy.

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