The effect of heroin on your body
The long-term use of heroin causes serious and chronic health problems throughout the body.
The immune system is compromised and problems with the heart are common.
The use of heroin can also trigger acute diseases in major organs and systems in the body and leave your body vulnerable to dangerous infections.
Here are some of the most common effects on the body of long-term heroin use.
Heroin causes a number of mental problems including compulsion, delayed memory, mood imbalance and hyperactivity followed by fatigue.
NOSE AND THROAT
Damage to the lining of the nose and throat and tooth decay.
Heroin weakens the lungs over time which can lead to collapse or infections like pneumonia.
Long term heroin use can damage the heart causing arrhythmia, infection of the heart lining and valves and lead to heart attacks or stroke.
The burden of dealing with heroin in your system can lead to permanent damage of the liver and conditions such as hepatitis B and C.
Heroin use causes high blood pressure which damages the blood vessels supplying the kidneys and can lead to infection and chronic kidney disease.
Heroin weakens the immune system and increases risk for HIV and other infections.
Heroin use damages the skin leading to abscesses, sores and peripheral edema.
Damage to the cardiovascular system can lead to blood poisoning, bradycardia, damaged veins and hypotension
LENGTH OF USE AND ADDICTION
Heroin is a very powerful opiate and for many users it leads to dependence and addiction. There is no hard and fast rule for when use turns into addiction. Even with a single use, this introductory experience can be the start of a compulsive cycle that quickly leads to addiction.
The more frequently you use the drug, the more rapidly your brain and nervous system adjusts to the chemical changes it causes.
Heroin is a central nervous system depressant, which means as well as the euphoria it also causes sedation or drowsiness. At high doses, heroin can slow the heart rate and respiration to dangerous and life-threatening levels.
Long-term use of heroin has been linked to a form of brain damage that looks like Alzheimer's disease. It has not been determined yet as to whether this condition can be reversed.
HEROIN ADDICTION TREATMENT
Withdrawal from heroin addiction can be painful and very unpleasant. Due these often severe symptoms and the psychological grip heroin has on users, a professional, residential treatment centre offers the best chance of success. It allows the user to be cared for and symptoms minimised through medicated detoxification.
Once the body is clear of heroin, the essential rehabilitation process needs to take place, where the user tackles the underlying behaviours that have led to their heroin use and they learn techniques and tools to manage these triggers once they re-enter society.
If you would like to discuss residential detox and rehabilitation for heroin or other drug addiction, call Linwood House on 01226 422 643 for a confidential chat.