The effects of heroin abuse include short- and long-term side effects, life-threatening health conditions, withdrawal symptoms, and complications involved in opiate addictions. At Red Oak Recovery, we offer a dedicated heroin addiction treatment program that includes medically assisted recovery and holistic and evidence-based therapy programs tailored to those with a heroin use disorder. To learn about our heroin addiction treatment center, please contact us today at 866.457.7590.
1. Short-Term Side Effects
The side effects of heroin abuse appear in as little as 10 minutes after use and last about five hours. These effects include the following:
- Skin flushing
- Shallow breathing
- Nausea and vomiting
- Itchy skin
- Dry mouth
- Emotional numbness
- Itchy skin
2. Long-Term Side Effects
As the addiction progresses, the side effects change. Eventually, complications related to this addiction trigger health problems. Many of these complications are life-threatening, such as collapsed veins, a damaged immune system, and bacterial infections. Memory loss and depression affect your ability to think clearly. In addition, heart infections, pneumonia, and liver disease also commonly result from long-term heroin abuse.
Other long-term health impacts include the following:
- Hormonal imbalance
- stomach issues
Individual counseling at Red Oak Recovery can provide the tools you need to stay sober instead of turning to heroin use.
3. Life-Threatening Side Effects
The effects of heroin abuse include many life-threatening side effects beyond those listed above. Serious side effects occur when heroin is smoked, injected, or snorted. All of the vital organs of the body are potentially impacted by heroin use.
Many of those with heroin use disorder develop the following dangerous conditions:
- Heart infections
- Hepatitis C and B (from needle sharing)
Some of these conditions improve with treatment, and others stay with you for a lifetime. That’s why it’s so important to seek help as soon as possible if you have a heroin addiction. This is particularly true if you have a co-occurring alcohol or other substance use disorder. Our dual diagnosis treatment program addresses underlying mental health disorders that may be behind your addiction.
4. Withdrawal Symptoms
Withdrawal symptoms are another unpleasant effect of heroin abuse. Medications such as methadone and suboxone can limit specific withdrawal symptoms. Side effects of heroin and other opioids include the following:
- Muscle spasms
- Nausea and vomiting
- Bone pains
Withdrawal symptoms can last up to three days during detox. Afterward, your mind and body still crave heroin. That’s why it’s crucial to seek professional care while going through withdrawal. Quitting heroin use on your own can result in life-threatening conditions.
Depression and anxiety treatment during recovery can help you deal with these negative emotions in healthier ways.
5. The Particular Risks of Opiate Epidemic
The effects of heroin abuse have something in common with other opioids such as Vicodin, Percocet, and Oxycontin. Prescription drug use is often the first inroad leading to heroin abuse. Sharp increases in opioid prescription abuse have spawned a national epidemic. Opioids such as heroin cause confusion, drowsiness, respiratory problems, and longer-term issues discussed above.
Heroin and other opiates often cause sensitivity to pain and can result in a coma or death during an overdose at much higher rates than other narcotics.
Heroin Addiction Treatment at Red Oak Recovery
If you are ready to quit using heroin, we are prepared to help. The effects of heroin abuse require specialized training. The staff and therapists at Red Oak Recovery have the qualifications needed to help you get on the road to recovery and stay there. Failing to obtain help with heroin detox can result in fatal consequences. After detox, contact us at 866.457.7590 to find out more about our admissions process.