Heroin is an illicit drug that is made from morphine, which is derived directly from the seedpod of the opium poppy plant. Also known as dope, horse, and smack, heroin is one of the most commonly abused illegal substances in the United States. In fact, heroin usage has increased significantly due to the opioid crisis that the country is currently facing.
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While detox services are not offered at our JourneyPure Paducah campus, JourneyPure has several other facilities that provide detox. We will make sure you receive the highest care of medical detoxification.
With prescription painkillers like Vicodin, Percocet, and OxyContin being abused on a regular basis, some people who are addicted to these pills simply cannot keep up with the high cost of them. As a result, they turn to the use of heroin, which is significantly cheaper and produces the same effects as prescription painkillers do. And because heroin is often injected, the rates of blood-borne diseases like HIV and hepatitis continue to increase, adding another complex, deadly layer to an already out-of-control epidemic.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), opioid overdoses involving heroin spiked around 2010. Today, heroin is behind countless overdoses that many would argue are more than we have ever seen before. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that an estimated half of all young individuals who are now injecting heroin were originally abusing prescription painkillers. Between 2002 and 2016 alone, overdose deaths including heroin rose by 533%.
Someone who is addicted to heroin is not able to live up to his or her full potential while under the influence of this potent drug. Instead, he or she will likely struggle to maintain and/or find employment, have enough money to buy basic essentials like food and clothes, and uphold any sense of physical or psychological well being. Additionally, someone with an opioid use disorder is also more likely to experience ongoing conflict with family and friends, problems amongst significant others and children, and trouble with the law. These are simply just a few of the many consequences that someone with an opioid use disorder can face.
For those who want to stop their heroin use once and for all, there are several different options for treatment. However, usually, the first step in the treatment process for opioid use disorder includes detox, which some individuals may attempt to do on their own. When done independently, one’s dependence to heroin can be so powerful that they are never fully able to detox on their own, that is why it is important you contact our heroin detox center in Paducah, Kentucky today.
When heroin is consumed, it quickly turns into morphine and finds its way to the opiate receptors in the brain. At that time, the individual who is using heroin experiences the high that he or she has been chasing that is both euphoric and relaxing. The brain also releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter that promotes a strong sense of wellbeing, at an increased amount than what the brain is naturally able to produce. After a while, an individual can begin to struggle with his or her memory, functioning, behavioral regulation, reasoning, and decision-making because of how heroin has impacted their brain.
So, knowing just how intensely heroin interacts with the brain, it is clear that it also interacts with the body in a similar manner. Heroin slows down the functions of the body, meaning that those who use it will experience pain relief, slowed breathing, and decreased heart rate. In a long-term sense, heroin can affect the body by causing oral health problems, trouble with sexual functioning, and a weakened immune system.
Now, abusing heroin can quickly lead to dependence, as the brain and the body begin to work in unison with heroin. When heroin is withheld or is not consumed in the same dose, both the body and brain react by producing distressing withdrawal symptoms that can be relieved by using more heroin. These symptoms can also be relieved by going through these withdrawal symptoms without using again, however that is often extremely painful and out-of-reach for many people who attempt this independently. Thankfully, this process does not need to be as gut-wrenching as it is known to be, and with the help from our heroin detox in Paducah, Kentucky, you can begin on the road to recovery!
Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms
The withdrawal symptoms that one experiences will all depend on his or her level of dependence on heroin. This can be determined by looking at how much heroin he or she has been using, how often he or she has been using for, and what method of consumption he or she is using.
Not all individuals who are going through heroin withdrawal will experience the same symptoms because they are unique in their addiction. However, a multitude of common physical and psychological symptoms can (and likely will) occur during heroin withdrawal. Consider the following:
- Muscle and bone aches
- Abdominal cramps
- Excessive tearing of the eyes
- Runny nose
- Rapid heart rate
- Muscle spasms
- Problems concentrating
- Problems experiencing pleasure
- Drug cravings
Those who have skipped a dose of heroin before, or who have made attempts at detoxing, know that these withdrawal symptoms are very serious and can be overwhelming to manage. For many addicted to heroin, these symptoms are what keep them using, with the help from our Paducah heroin detox, the cycle of addiction can be broken.
Heroin Withdrawal Timeline
It usually takes up to seven full days to effectively detox from heroin, however, during each one of those days, the intensity of withdrawal symptoms can go up and down and up again.
After one’s last dose of heroin, withdrawal symptoms can begin to develop within a mere six to 12 hours. Those symptoms, plus any others that develop in the meantime, hit their peak between days one and three of detox. This is when withdrawal symptoms are the strongest and most powerful. After day three, most symptoms begin to subside and ease their way out. Even though some people detox from heroin within a week’s time, others might need roughly 10 days or so for this process, as it depends on how severe his or her heroin addiction was.
Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS)
There are a handful of people who, if they have used for a long period of time, will develop post-acute withdrawal syndrome, or PAWS, after ending their heroin use. This condition occurs when withdrawal symptoms continue on far past the average time it takes to detox. Symptoms of this condition can last for weeks, months, or years at a time, and can include the following:
- Memory problems
- Mood swings
- Trouble sleeping
One of the best ways to prevent painful withdrawal symptoms and the development of a condition like PAWS is to attend a heroin detox center.
Why Choose Our Heroin Detox in Paducah
Our heroin detox in Paducah, Kentucky can help those who are addicted to heroin detox safely and comfortably, rather than suffer through independent, cold turkey attempts. Since the withdrawal symptoms that can develop during heroin detox can be so disruptive, a medical detox facility can provide medications designed to help minimize the withdrawal symptoms. These medications can include:
- Anti-nausea medications
- Antidiarrheal medications
- Natural sleep aids
- Nutritional support
When in our heroin detox center, clients will not only benefit from some of these medications, but they will also be provided with specific prescription medications designed to help treat opioid use disorder.
Known as medication-assisted treatment, those detoxing from opioids can be prescribed approved medications capable of helping decrease the pain of withdrawal symptoms and stopping powerful cravings from developing. These medications, which includes Suboxone, are controlled within a detox center and only administered by professionals.
Throughout one’s detox process, he or she will be provided with around-the-clock treatment from medical professionals and mental health experts so that if a client needs advanced physical or psychological treatment, he or she can have it immediately.
Detox also offers clients a safe, secure place to go through this process, rather than being in an environment that promotes drug use or reminds an individual of his or her use. This helps prevent relapse, as well as reduces the presence of drug cravings. Clients will also be helped with entering a heroin treatment program once they are medically cleared. Our treatment program can help give them further therapy so that they have the best chance at remaining sober.
Get The Right Help At JourneyPure’s Heroin Detox Center in Paducah, KY
If you are struggling with opioid use disorder, you might not think that it is possible for you to recover. You may have even tried to detox on your own before, but did not have success in doing so. We know how demoralizing that can be, and we understand why you may think that recovery is not something you can achieve. However, a heroin detox can help you start looking at your addiction differently. Rather than viewing sobriety as something unattainable, you can begin to view it as the light at the end of the tunnel.
Do not wait one more second to reach out for the help you need to overcome your opioid use disorder. You do not deserve to remain addicted to this deadly substance, nor do you have to. There are several options for care that you can choose from, and getting your start at our Paducah heroin detox center can help you envision the rest of your recovery.
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