Overcoming Heroin Addiction with Effective Support
Heroin is one of the most commonly abused drugs in the United States, with an estimated 1.1 million people aged 12 and older using it in some form last year alone. Unfortunately, heroin addiction is also one of the toughest addictions to beat, which makes seeking out the right form of treatment all the more important.
Heroin addiction is one of the most difficult and painful addictions that you can contend with. Heroin can sink its claws in so deep that it can seem impossible to overcome. Fortunately, it is possible for every heroin addict to climb out of their addiction. Even those with long and severe heroin dependence.
To that end, we have created a comprehensive guide on the best approaches for heroin addiction treatment, including everything from medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to the different types of therapy available for overcoming dependence and what to expect from a treatment center.
In this article, we look at what treatment for heroin addiction involves at Icarus Behavioral Health in Nevada, so you can have a clear understanding of how you or your loved one can get clean from heroin for good!
What are the Effects of Heroin Addiction?
Heroin addiction can cause physical health problems that may be difficult to reverse. You may experience a range of symptoms, from chronic pain to intestinal issues and even organ failure.
Your skin, too, will suffer due to the toxic effects of heroin and other drugs used in combination with it. Not only is your appearance likely to suffer, but you are also at risk for developing more serious medical conditions such as hepatitis B and C or HIV/AIDS.
As heroin use continues and develops into severe heroin addiction, so does the risk of overdose. Overdose is a leading cause of death among people who use heroin – which can occur after just one use or over time as tolerance increases or drug purity changes. If an overdose occurs, your breathing can slow or even stop, leading to brain damage or death.
The Mounting Long Term Effects of Opiates
Long-term use of heroin will also take its toll on your heart and respiratory system. Heroin users have an increased risk for developing infective endocarditis, a bacterial infection that affects the inner lining of the heart chambers and valves, as well as pulmonary edema – fluid buildup inside the lungs that can cause difficulty breathing. These conditions are both serious and potentially life-threatening.
Using needles to inject heroin also puts you at risk of contracting infections such as cellulitis and abscesses due to unsanitary needles used in combination with other drugs (e.g., cocaine). This type of injection drug use increases the chances of transmitting bloodborne diseases like hepatitis B and C or HIV/AIDS.
Because of the effects of heroin on your central nervous system (CNS), you may suffer from chronic pain as well as problems with balance and coordination. The CNS is responsible for controlling movement, heart rate, breathing, digestion, and blood pressure – so any damage to this system can have far-reaching health implications.
Mental Health and Heroin: A Toxic Cocktail
Heroin addiction can have a devastating impact on your mental health. When you become addicted to heroin, your brain’s natural chemical balance is disrupted and this can cause long-term changes in how you think, feel, and behave.
As the intensity of your substance abuse increases, so too does the risk of developing serious mental health symptoms.
Depression is one of the common mental health disorders linked to drug addiction in general, and heroin use specifically. Those addicted to the drug may experience persistent feelings of sadness, lethargy, and hopelessness that interfere with daily life. People who engage in drug abuse often self-medicate their depression with more drugs, creating a dangerous cycle of dependence and addiction.
Heroin addicts are at significant risk for anxiety disorders as well. Chronic use of the drug can cause strong cravings and intense physical withdrawal symptoms, making it difficult to remain abstinent from heroin over time. This fear of relapse can lead to heightened levels of anxiety which can be paralyzing and further impede progress in recovery.
People who misuse heroin may also experience changes in their thinking processes and behavior patterns that indicate psychosis or schizophrenia. This can manifest in the form of paranoia, delusions, and hallucinations.
These mental health disorders can be alarming for both the person suffering from them and their loved ones, as they may lead to dangerous behaviors or feelings of intense guilt.
Heroin addiction can also lead to complex post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This can occur when a person experiences extreme trauma as a result of their addiction, such as witnessing violence while using drugs or being arrested due to drug use, and is unable to process it in an effective way.
combination of flashbacks, nightmares, and intrusive memories from these traumatic events can be extremely debilitating for those affected by them.
Heroin and Opioid Receptors
Heroin is one of the most dangerous drugs available, and its use can cause severe damage to opioid receptors in your body. These receptors are responsible for pain relief and pleasure, as well as producing hormones that help with mood regulation. When heroin is abused, these receptors become overstimulated and stop functioning correctly, leading to a number of physical and psychological problems.
Since heroin affects your opioid receptors, the use of this drug can lead to changes in your body’s ability to feel pleasure and pain, something which happens from substance use disorder of other drugs too. This can cause an increased tolerance for opioids, which means that you will need higher doses of heroin in order to get the same effects as before. Over time, this can lead to physical dependence, where you need heroin just to feel normal.
Our Approaches to Heroin Addiction Treatment
Heroin addiction treatment is an important step for anyone who is struggling with heroin use. Treatment usually involves both detoxification and therapy, which work together to help you get clean and start living a healthy life again.
The first stage of heroin use treatment is detoxification. This process involves removing the drug from your system so that your body can start to recover from the physical addiction. Detoxing from any drug, including heroin, can be a difficult and uncomfortable process.
During detox, you may experience withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, insomnia, and intense cravings for the drug. However, with proper medical supervision and support during treatment for heroin use addiction, these effects can be managed to make sure you are as comfortable as possible.
Once detox is complete, therapy becomes an important part of heroin addiction treatment. Therapy helps you explore the psychological issues behind your addiction in order to understand your triggers and learn how to cope in a healthy way. You will also work on developing new coping skills and strategies so that when faced with difficult situations or cravings you will have tools to help you stay sober. Here are just a few of the different types of therapy for heroin addiction treatment:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a form of talk therapy that encourages self-awareness and the ability to identify and challenge negative thoughts and behaviors. This type of therapy can help those suffering from heroin addiction learn how to modify their behavior in order to prevent relapse.
- Contingency Management (CM) – A form of behavior modification based on the principles of positive reinforcement, Contingency Management helps those with heroin addiction fight their cravings by providing rewards for good behaviors. This type of therapy can help individuals stay motivated and engaged in their recovery process.
- Motivational Interviewing (MI) – Motivational interviewing is a form of psychotherapy that focuses on helping individuals develop the internal motivation to change their behavior and overcome addiction. This type of therapy can help those struggling with heroin addiction tap into their own inner strength and resources in order to make healthier choices.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) – Dialectical Behavior Therapy is a form of cognitive-behavior therapy that helps individuals learn to cope with difficult emotions and manage their distress. This type of therapy can help those suffering from heroin addiction develop the skills they need to make positive changes in their lives.
- Group Therapy – Group therapy is a great way for those with heroin addiction to find support and understanding from others who are experiencing similar struggles. This type of therapy can help individuals find a sense of community and hope in their recovery process.
Medication Assisted Treatment
In addition to therapy, your recovery plan may include medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT is an evidence-based approach that uses medications such as buprenorphine to reduce the intensity of withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist that helps ease cravings and treat physical dependence.
This can make it easier to stay in a treatment program for a longer period of time and increase the chances of long-term success.
Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) is a comprehensive form of treatment for heroin addiction that combines medications with counseling and other behavioral therapies. MAT helps people reduce or stop their use of opioids, such as heroin, while also addressing any associated medical, social, vocational, and psychological problems.
Choosing MAT for Recovery from Opioid Drugs
MATs are offered at many addiction treatment centers, Icarus included and can help you become more aware of your addiction, resist cravings, and manage withdrawal symptoms. These treatments involve medications such as buprenorphine or methadone combined with counseling sessions and other forms of support.
MATs are safe for people who use them properly while providing an effective way to reduce the risk of overdose and other medical complications associated with heroin addiction. By helping to reduce cravings for the drug, MATs may also help you avoid a relapse and stay in recovery longer.
Studies show that people who take part in MAT programs are more likely to remain abstinent from opioids than those who do not receive such treatments. Additionally, research suggests that MAT programs reduce the risk of HIV, Hepatitis C, and other infectious diseases related to heroin use.
MAT can provide a sense of comfort and security as you work through your recovery and adjust to life without drugs.
Addiction Aftercare and Alumni Programs
Ongoing support is essential for successful heroin addiction treatment at heroin addiction treatment centers. Aftercare programs provide a safe place to continue working on your recovery after formal treatment has ended.
These programs typically involve group therapy sessions with other recovering addicts, as well as individual counseling and peer support groups. By continuing to attend these meetings you will be able to keep up the progress you have made and make sure your recovery stays on track.
Managing Withdrawal From Heroin
If you are considering heroin addiction treatment, you may be wondering what to expect from the withdrawal process. Heroin withdrawal is an incredibly difficult and uncomfortable experience that can last anywhere from a few days to several weeks. The severity of your symptoms will depend on how long and how often you’ve used heroin.
One of the most common symptoms of heroin withdrawal is intense cravings to use again. These cravings can be incredibly strong and may lead you to relapse if not managed properly.
Physical symptoms include sweating, nausea, vomiting, muscle aches and pains, insomnia, fatigue, dilated pupils, and tremors. These typically peak at day 2 or 3 of heroin withdrawal, and get better from then.
Mental or emotional symptoms of heroin withdrawal can include anxiety, depression, irritability, mood swings, restlessness, and feelings of hopelessness. During this time remember that these symptoms are only temporary and will pass with treatment.
Strong support system
It’s also essential to have a strong support system in place during the withdrawal process. This includes family and friends, as well as healthcare professionals who can provide emotional support and medical assistance when needed. Many treatment centers also offer support groups where you can connect with people who understand what you’re going through.
If you’re considering treatment for heroin addiction, reach out to an experienced addiction specialist at Icarus Behavioral Health for help. They can give you support and guidance on what to expect during the withdrawal process so that you can be better prepared for a successful recovery.
How To Find A Heroin Addiction Treatment Center
Finding a suitable addiction treatment center for heroin addiction can be a difficult task. Make sure you take the time to research and understand the different types of centers available, as well as their policies and procedures. This will ensure that you find the right center for yourself or your loved one who is struggling with heroin addiction.
Identify The Drug Abuse Treatment Care You Need
The first step in finding an effective addiction treatment center is to identify what type of care you need. There are many different forms of treatment available, including outpatient services, residential programs, detoxification programs, and therapy. Depending on the severity of the addiction, each option may be more or less suitable than another. Consider both long-term and short-term goals when looking into possible treatment centers.
Figure Out Quality of Care
When researching addiction treatment centers, consider the quality of care they provide. A quality addiction treatment center should be licensed and accredited by an official organization. Make sure that the center has experienced staff on hand who are knowledgeable about treating heroin addiction. You should look into their accreditation status, as well as any complaints that have been filed against them in the past few years.
Cost is another factor to consider when choosing a suitable addiction treatment center for yourself or your loved one. Most centers will provide a sliding scale fee structure based on income level, but it’s always important to understand what you can afford before making a final decision. Additionally, many centers offer payment plans and accept insurance, so be sure to find out if this is an option.
Available Support and Aftercare
Consider the support available from the center. Having a strong support system in place during drug abuse treatment can make all the difference in a successful recovery. Make sure that you or your loved one feels comfortable with the staff and environment of the addiction treatment center before committing to any program. Additionally, inquire about aftercare services such as peer counseling and alumni groups that may be available through the center.
Get a Life Free from Heroin: Reach Out Now
Finding the best treatment for heroin addiction for you or your loved one can be a daunting task. Heroin addiction is clearly an incredibly serious issue, and you want to go with the treatment center where you have the best chance of success.
There are many heroin addiction treatment centers across the US, and it can be difficult knowing which to go for. You need to go with a center that has plenty of experience treating opioid dependence, particularly heroin addiction. You must make sure that the center you go with really cares about you or your loved one getting better.
At Icarus Behavioral Health, we have helped hundreds of people recover with programs for effective heroin addiction treatment, and our only concern is seeing people getting better. If you would like to talk with us about how we can help you or your loved one, please contact us today for a confidential consultation!