Quitting heroin may be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. However, overcoming an addiction is possible even when you think otherwise. Learn how to quit heroin safely in this post, and find other resources to help you overcome addiction as well as other related mental health problems.
Heroin is one of those drugs that will never seem to be ‘enough’. Even the first moments of getting high can hook you, and it easily controls people to want more until it turns deadly. This pattern of addiction to heroin is simply one of the reasons why there is an opioid epidemic in the United States. Along with prescribed opioids, heroin is a street drug easily obtained that contributes to this growing substance abuse problem.
If you’re thinking about ways on how to stop using heroin, you’ve come to the right post. We will be discussing the extent of the typical heroin addiction, ways to quit heroin safely, plus some resources to get you started on recovery.
How Addictive Is Heroin?
How hard is it to quit heroin? This is a common question asked by people contemplating being drug-free for the first time. To better understand this, let us also take a closer look at the composition of this drug.
Heroin was first created as a drug to treat tuberculosis and morphine addiction. Back in the day, there was a growing morphine substance abuse problem, and some researchers claimed that heroin could be the ‘solution’. Unfortunately, heroin turned out to be a bigger problem than morphine because it was substituted with a more addictive substance.
Heroin binds to the brain’s opioid receptors, sending out excessive amounts of dopamine which is responsible for the pleasurable and relaxing feeling it gives. Unfortunately, these chemical reactions are highly unnatural and addictive, making the person dependent on the drug. Since heroin suppresses brain, heart, and lung activity, the tolerance and gradual increase of dosage can turn deadly for many users.
Other people may have the will to quit before it’s too late. However, the brain and the body are just so used to the drug that many suffer from intense withdrawal symptoms which can be uncomfortable, to say the least. Even if you find ways on how to quit heroin on your own, you will discover that this isn’t the safest choice as withdrawal symptoms can also put a risk on your life. Quitting heroin safely requires the help of addiction specialists. It’s not just about stopping your use–it is also about understanding why you are triggered to take them in the first place. There are internal and external factors you have to consider when quitting heroin.
How Do I Quit Heroin Safely?
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Quitting heroin safely requires the help of addiction specialists. It’s not just about stopping your use–it is also about understanding why you are triggered to take them in the first place. There are internal and external factors you have to consider when quitting heroin.
Reach out to a trusted drug treatment facility
Quality drug treatment centers are trained to help people even if they have no experience with addiction rehabs in the past. Simply call a hotline of a trusted rehab center, and they can guide you through the process of verifying your insurance while answering any questions you may have.
Upon reaching out to an addiction treatment center, the things you will commonly expect in a heroin recovery program includes:
- Medical detox: Heroin is a highly addictive substance and withdrawal symptoms can be severe when left untreated. Most patients who have heroin addiction may need to complete a medical detox treatment. During detox, attendees are given round-the-clock care, comfortable lodging, nutritious meals, IV fluids, and other medications to ensure that they can go through the heroin withdrawal safely.
- Treatment: The approach recommended will depend on your preferences and specific background. For heroin addiction, patients may opt for 12-Step rehab, Non-religious rehab, or a combination of both depending on their needs.
- Aftercare: Most treatments last for 30 to 90 days. After this intensive period, patients may be recommended a home program or given a referral to support groups as well as other outpatient maintenance programs to help in their sobriety.
Do not quit heroin on your own
Some individuals assume that quitting drugs, especially heroin is a simple as stopping their use abruptly. Doing this is not only problematic but also dangerous as many outcomes could happen.
Quitting heroin on your own could increase your risk of withdrawal complications. For example, one of the symptoms of heroin withdrawal is nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Without medical help, a person under withdrawal can suffer from dehydration, seizures, and loss of consciousness, which can be life-threatening.
Another potential risk of quitting heroin on your own is experiencing a relapse. Heroin relapse is dangerous as some people may not realize that their tolerance of the drug is currently reduced. They end up taking the usual dose they can remember, potentially causing overdose symptoms and even death.
These risks can be avoided by having medical professionals on standby during addiction treatment. Talk to a Intake Coordinator
Take The First Step Towards Recovery
Talk to a Intake Coordinator
Find a supportive community
Family and friends can give you moral and financial support to finally quit heroin. Tell your trusted loved ones about your decision to quit, so they can also make environmental adjustments to keep you away from addiction triggers.
Another example of a supportive community is peer groups in your area. You can join faith-based or secular groups where you can get support, accountability, and companionship throughout your recovery journey. Knowing that you are not alone in your decision can empower you to keep going.
Quitting Heroin Is For Winners
Quitting is often associated with ‘losers’, but not when it comes to drug addiction. The decision to overcome heroin addiction could easily be the bravest move you’ll make, making you win for your health, your loved ones, and your life.
- Pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov – “The history of heroin”.
- Journals.plos.org – “Genes and (Common) Pathways Underlying Drug Addiction”.
- Ndarc.med.unsw.edu – “Yes, people can die from opiate withdrawal”.
Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.
Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.