Heroin Detox and How to Quit Heroin
Heroin is a powerful and dangerous drug that has devastating consequences for users and their families. The effects of heroin are immediate and intense, and include feelings of euphoria, relaxation, and sedation. However, heroin use also comes with serious risks, including overdose, respiratory depression, and viral infections. These risks are especially high for first-time users or those with a history of substance use disorders. In addition, heroin use can lead to criminal activity and financial instability.
Despite these risks, heroin use and heroin addiction has increased in recent years among all age groups and demographics. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), there were about 691,000 people in the United States with a heroin use disorder in 2020.
It is important to be aware of the dangers of heroin addiction and to seek help if you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse.
Keep reading to see how Icarus Behavioral Health in Nevada can help you with any form of opiate use and provides effective heroin detox.
What is Heroin Detox?
Heroin detox is the process of ridding the body of the drug and other toxins. It can be a difficult and uncomfortable process, but it is an important first step in recovery. There are a few different ways to detox from heroin, and the best method will vary depending on the person.
How Does Heroin Detox Work?
The first step in recovering from heroin addiction detox is to stop using heroin. Some people choose to detox at home with the help of family and friends. This can be difficult because it requires a lot of willpower and ongoing support.
Other people choose to detox at an addiction treatment center where they can receive medical care and support 24 hours per day. Residential detox and addiction treatment programs provide a safe and comfortable environment for detoxing from heroin.
How Long Does it Take to Detox From Heroin?
Detoxing from heroin usually takes several days, but some symptoms of heroin withdrawal may last for weeks or even months. During the detox process, you’ll be closely monitored by medical staff to ensure that you’re as comfortable as possible and that your vital signs are stable. You may also be given medication to help relieve some of the physical symptoms and emotional symptoms of withdrawal.
The length of time it takes to detox from heroin will depend on a number of factors, including:
The severity of your addiction
The more severe your substance abuse, the longer it will take to detoxify your body.
The method of detoxification
There are different methods of detoxifying from heroin, including medically-supervised detoxification and self-detox. Medically-supervised detox is usually more successful because it provides around-the-clock care and supervision from licensed medical professionals. However, self-detoxification is sometimes necessary when someone doesn’t have access to medical care.
Your overall health
Your overall health plays a role in how quickly you’ll be able to detox your body from heroin. If you have other underlying health conditions, you’re more likely to feel the withdrawal symptoms for longer and detox could be prolonged.
After you’ve completed detox, you’ll be ready to begin addiction treatment to help with your substance abuse and mental health disorders.
Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms
Heroin withdrawal symptoms can be tough to deal with, but understanding them is the first step in getting through them. Heroin withdrawal symptoms can include both physical and mental symptoms that can be painful and difficult to cope with. However, there is a treatment process available to help ease the most intense symptoms of heroin withdrawal and make the heroin withdrawal process more manageable.
Physical Withdrawal Symptoms
- Body aches and pains
- Nausea and vomiting
- Muscle aches
- Stomach cramps
- Loss of appetite
- Shakiness or tremors
- High blood pressure
Mental Withdrawal Symptoms
- Drug cravings
- Mood swings
- Suicidal Ideation
To help ease these specific symptoms, it’s important to drink plenty of fluids, eat a healthy diet, and get plenty of rest. You may also want to create a plan that incorporates medications, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief if approved by your medical team. It’s also important to avoid using drugs or alcohol during this time.
After you detox, you may still have intense cravings for heroin. These intense cravings can last for weeks or even months. It’s important to find ways to cope with them. Some people find that exercise, meditation, and deep breathing help. Others find that attending support groups like Narcotics Anonymous is helpful. The most important thing is to stay busy and distracted so that you don’t think about using drugs.
When Does Heroin Withdrawal Begin?
Heroin withdrawal symptoms can begin as early as a few hours after the last dose, and common symptoms can peak within 1-2 days of your last dose. They gradually subside over the course of 5-10 days. However, some people may experience post acute withdrawal symptoms that last for weeks or months. These prolonged symptoms can include anxiety, depression, insomnia, irritability, and fatigue.
Quitting Heroin: Cold Turkey vs. Medical Detoxification
There are two main of stopping heroin: going cold turkey or seeking professional help through medical detox. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of each method.
Quit Heroin Cold Turkey
This is when you simply stop using heroin without any help from a medical professional or tapering off of the drug gradually. Going cold turkey has a few advantages. First, it’s usually cheaper than medical detox since you don’t have to pay for professional help. Second, it can be done anywhere since you don’t need access to a professional detox facility.
However, there are also some serious disadvantages to a cold turkey detox. First and foremost, it’s extremely difficult to do successfully. Without professional help, most people who try to go cold turkey will eventually relapse because of the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. It’s not unusual for this type of relapse to lead to a fatal overdose.
Now let’s take a look at medical detoxification. This is when you receive professional help to quit using heroin and manage your withdrawal symptoms. Medical detox has a number of advantages over going cold turkey.
First, it’s more likely to be successful since you have professional help every step of the way. This makes the withdrawal process more bearable since you have access to medication that can help relieve some of the worst symptoms. Additionally, if you have any pre-existing medical conditions (such as heart disease or diabetes), quitting with medical supervision can ensure that your health isn’t put at risk during withdrawal.
Of course, there are also some disadvantages to medical detoxification. First and foremost, it’s more expensive than going cold turkey since you have to pay for professional care. Additionally, it takes place in a treatment center where you’re cut off from your usual support system (such as family and friends), which can make the process more difficult emotionally.
As you can see, there are pros and cons to both quitting methods. The best way to decide which one is right for you is to speak with an addiction medicine specialist or mental health professionals who can assess your situation and make a recommendation based on your individual needs. Whichever method you choose, remember that recovery from addiction is possible—and there is help available if you need it.
Medications Can Help With Heroin Withdrawal
Heroin withdrawal can be an extremely difficult experience, but there are certain medications that can help ease the process. These medications can help lessen severe withdrawal symptoms and make the road to recovery a little bit easier.
There are three main types of medication that are commonly used to help with heroin withdrawal: methadone, buprenorphine, and clonidine.
Methadone is an opioid medication that is used to treat moderate to severe pain. It can also be used in the treatment of heroin detox by reducing the severity of withdrawal symptoms and cravings for heroin. Buprenorphine and clonodine can also be used in detox to help reduce common withdrawal symptoms and cravings for heroin.
Can You Die From Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms?
The withdrawal process from heroin withdrawal can be painful and uncomfortable.
One of the most serious complications of heroin withdrawal is dehydration. When you’re going through withdrawal, your body sweats a lot and you lose a lot of fluids. This can lead to dehydration, which can cause dizziness, lightheadedness, and even fainting. It can also make it difficult for your body to regulate its temperature, which can lead to hyperthermia or hypothermia. If not treated properly, these condition could be fatal, but it’s not common.
Another serious complication of heroin withdrawal is respiratory depression. This is when your breathing becomes very shallow and slow, and it can eventually stop altogether. This is extremely dangerous because it means that your body isn’t getting the oxygen it needs, which can be life threatening in some cases.
Heroin Withdrawal Tips
It can be difficult to experience withdrawal symptoms from heroin detoxification. The symptoms can be intense and uncomfortable, but there are things that you can do to make it through withdrawal as safely and easily as possible. Here are some tips for dealing with heroin withdrawal.
Reach out for help
Quitting heroin is not something that you have to do alone. There are many people who have been where you are and who want to help you through this difficult time. There are also numerous professionals who can help you get through opioid withdrawal symptoms and on the road to your recovery process. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help from friends, family, or professionals.
Follow a detox plan
There are different detox plans that your doctor can recommend based on your individual situation. It’s important to follow the detox plan that your doctor recommends in order to minimize the risks associated with withdrawal.
Be prepared for the symptoms
Symptoms of heroin withdrawal can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, body aches, muscle pain, sweating, goosebumps, anxiety, depression, irritability, and insomnia. These symptoms can be difficult to deal with, but it’s important to remember that they are only temporary and that they will eventually go away. Try to prepare yourself for this.
Take things one day at a time
Recovery is a process that takes time. Don’t expect to be cured overnight; it takes time to heal both physically and emotionally from addiction. Focus on taking things one day at a time and eventually the days will turn into weeks and the weeks will turn into months and years.
How You Can Support a Loved One Going Through Heroin Detox
If your loved one is struggling with heroin addiction, you may be feeling helpless. After all, substance use disorder is a powerful disease, and going to a detox center can be scary. However, there are things that you can do to support your loved one during this difficult time.
- The first thing you need to do is educate yourself about heroin addiction and detox. There are a lot of myths and misconceptions out there about addiction and detox. It is important to understand the truth so that you can be an effective support system for your loved one.
- Next, you need to be supportive without enabling. This can be a delicate balance, but it is important. For example, you should not give your loved one money to buy drugs. However, you can offer to help them with expenses related to addiction treatment or recovery.
- Finally, you need to take care of yourself. Caring for a loved one who is going through detox can be emotionally and mentally draining. It is important to make sure that you are taking care of yourself so that you can be there for your loved one when they need you most.
If you have a loved one who is going through heroin detox, know that you are not alone.
What To Do After Heroin Detox
You’ve completed detox and are now ready to begin the journey of recovery. But what’s next? How do you ensure that you stay on the path of sobriety? The answer is different for everyone, but there are some general things that everyone in recovery should do.
Get involved in a recovery program
You’ve taken the first step. You’re ready to put heroin behind you and move on with your life. But now you may be wondering, what’s the best way to do that? Ideally, you could go to an inpatient facility. In an inpatient setting, you’ll have 24/7 access to care and supervision. This is important because it allows you to address any cravings that may arise immediately before they have a chance to take hold. You’ll be in a safe environment where you can focus on your recovery without having to worry about relapse.
If you can’t attend inpatient treatment programs, you should look into outpatient options as well, such as a partial hospitalization program (PHP) or intensive outpatient programs (IOP).
A partial hospitalization program (PHP) is a type of addiction treatment that allows patients to live at home while receiving intensive daily care. PHP programs typically last for 6-8 hours each day and include individual and group therapy, as well as other activities such as recreation and life skills training. Patients in a PHP program are typically monitored closely by staff members, who provide support and structure throughout the day.
Intensive outpatient programs (IOP) for addiction are treatment programs that allow patients to live at home and continue working or attending school while receiving intensive addiction treatment for their addiction. IOPs usually consist of group and individual therapy sessions several times each week, and may last for a period of several weeks to several months.
Seek out sober living options
If you’re struggling to stay sober after completing heroin detox, sober living options may be a good fit for you. Sober living homes provide a structured environment where residents are expected to follow certain rules, such as abstaining from drugs and alcohol, maintaining regular employment, and paying rent on time. This structure can be helpful for those who are still adjusting to life without drugs or alcohol.
Develop a support system
In addition to a formal recovery program, it’s also important to develop a support network of people who will be there for you during your recovery. These people can provide emotional support and practical assistance when needed. They can also hold you accountable for your sobriety.
You can also do this by being a part of different support groups. There are many different groups out there designed to help people in recovery stay sober. Some programs, like Alcoholics Anonymous, follow a 12-step program. Others, like SMART Recovery, focus on helping people develop coping and problem-solving skills.
Make healthy lifestyle choices
After completing heroin detox, it’s important to make healthy lifestyle choices. This includes eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and managing stress in healthy ways. Making these changes can be difficult, but it’s worth it if it means staying sober and healthy in the long run.
Seek professional help
Finally, if you feel like you need additional help beyond what a formal recovery program and your support system can provide, seek out professional help from a therapist or counselor who specializes in treating addiction. This professional help can supplement your other efforts and give you the tools you need to succeed in recovery.
Detox is only the first step on the road to recovery. By taking the steps above, you’ll be setting yourself up for success in sobriety.
The Benefits of Our Heroin Detox Program
There are many benefits to our medical detox program, including:
- 24/7 medical supervision- Our medical staff is available around the clock to help you manage withdrawal symptoms and make sure that you are as comfortable as possible.
- A comfortable setting- We believe that the environment in which you detox should be as calming and peaceful as possible so that you can focus on getting better. That’s why our facility is beautiful and serene, with plenty of natural light and welcoming common areas.
- Low staff-to-patient ratio- We believe in providing individualized care, which is why we have a low staff-to-patient ratio. This allows us to get to know each of our clients on a personal level and create an addiction treatment Plan that is tailored specifically for their needs.
Contact Icarus in Nevada for Help with Heroin Today
If you think you may have a problem with heroin abuse or addiction, it’s important to seek professional help right away. Here at Icarus Behavioral Health in Nevada, we have a variety of addiction treatment options available that can help you get on the road to recovery. Contact us today.
All information you provide to our admissions team is confidential. Please reach out today to get the help you deserve for you and your loved ones!