Every day, thousands of men and women all over America lose their lives to heroin addiction. In every state, there are families and communities suffering from the loss of friends, neighbors and loved ones. Heroin addiction is more prevalent than ever before in our country.
At the same time, there are people every day trying to give up using heroin and other opioid drugs. Some people try to do it on their own, and very few of them succeed. Many end up relapsing due to the pain of withdrawal and the intense dependence on this life-threatening drug.
But there is hope. With professional help and safe, medically assisted heroin detox many people have the opportunity to build a strong foundation for recovering from their addiction.
Let us look at what you need to know about heroin detox when you reach out to get help.
Heroin Detox: Understanding Drug Dependence
Like most drugs, excessive and prolonged abuse of heroin leads to a medical condition called Substance Use Disorder (SUD). But a crucial part of the development of a SUD is drug dependence, and there are two particular kinds of dependence that people should understand.
This is about how your body adapts to substances. When the cells of your body can’t function without a substance, that is a clear indication of physical dependence. The body gets used to the presence of a chemical over time, so when the chemical is no longer present the body is forced to regulate itself.
The body also stops producing certain chemicals in the brain naturally because it gets them artificially through drugs. However, once you stop using the drugs the body is no longer producing what it needs.
Physical dependency becomes pretty apparent when you try to stop using heroin without any medical help. When you try to stop using abruptly you experience extremely uncomfortable physical withdrawal symptoms because of the imbalance in the body.
Psychological or emotional dependence is a result of the changes a drug creates in the mind. It is defined as a compulsion or perceived obsession for the substance. So while the individual may not be experiencing intense physical withdrawal, they may be psychologically impaired by the abrupt absence of a substance they have adapted to.
Instead of developing healthy coping skills, most heroin users tend to rely on the drug for dealing with emotional or behavioral issues. If they suddenly remove the drug, they are left defenseless against their issues.
If someone relies heavily on drugs for feelings of pleasure and stimulation, removing the drug may cause them to feel they cannot be happy without it. This is impacted by the drugs chemical interaction with the brain.
And at the end of the day, physical addiction can have psychological side effects, and vice versa. That is why heroin detox should not only offer medical assistance, but also therapeutic resources.
Heroin Detox: Withdrawal Symptoms
Suddenly stopping heroin without any medical assistance is called going “cold turkey” and it throws you almost immediately into withdrawal. “Cold turkey” is not just uncomfortable, it is dangerous. These heroin withdrawals manifest both physically and psychologically, and the symptoms can range in severity and frequency. Some examples of heroin withdrawal symptoms including:
- Extreme anxiety
- Excessive yawning and sneezing
- Runny nose
- Cold sweats
- Cramp-like pains
- Involuntary spasms in the limbs
- Severe muscle and bone aches
Trying to go through withdrawal from heroin without help is extremely difficult. Some people find it impossible due to the severity of their symptoms. Many people find themselves trapped in a cycle or relapse and attempts to recovery because withdrawal symptoms can be so hard to overcome.
This is why heroin detox is so important. This level of care can help ease you off of heroin and other opiates gradually with the use of medications specifically designed to assist with heroin withdrawal symptoms. Having a safe and experienced medical staff makes this process much more manageable. With a physically and emotionally healthy environment, you can start to establish a comprehensive recovery plan.
Heroin Detox: Safe, Medical Care
Heroin detox should always consist of two phases: evaluation and stabilization.
During this first stage of heroin detox, the individual will be given an assessment in order to determine the best course of treatment. It will include obtaining information about:
- What drugs they have been using
- The presence of drugs in their system
- What quantities of drugs have they been using
- How long have they have been using these drugs
- Other medications
- Co-occurring conditions
This is done through a drug screen, along with any further information you provide during the assessment. Because programs for heroin detox are in a medical setting, the results of your drug screen and information disclosed during your assessment are strictly confidential just like any other medical information is.
During a heroin detox program, the stabilization stage will utilize all the information you provide during your initial assessment to design an effective detox plan. Taper medications are often used in order to wean you off of heroin in both a safe and comfortable way. Detoxing from heroin and other narcotic opiates like prescription painkillers should always be done in a professional and effective manner.
There are many kinds of medication designed to help combat opioid addiction. Carefully consider your options with the medical addiction specialist to ensure you are getting the best possible care. Be sure to provide them with accurate health information for the best results.
Quality care during stabilization should also include providing therapeutic resources for the emotional and psychological side effects. Having support for your mental and emotional well-being is also extremely important for relapse prevention. It lays the groundwork for developing healthy and sustainable coping skills. With the right care, you can take this time to design a personalized recovery plan that is right for you and addresses all of your specific needs to help you be more successful in recovery.
Are you struggling with a dependence on heroin? Are you trying to quit but have failed on your own? Consider reaching out to the caring and compassionate professionals of Palm Partners Recovery Center. If you or a loved one is struggling with heroin abuse or addiction, please call toll-free now. We want to help.
CALL NOW 1-800-951-6135
Author: Justin Mckibben
For anyone who is struggling with an addiction to heroin, a heroin detox in West Palm Beach can be the thing that changes your life, and can even save your life. Too many people get dependent on heroin, and when they want to quit they never do because when they try they experience serious and intense side effects called withdrawals, and the fear of experiencing that all over again often keeps people who need the help from ever giving another attempt at kicking the habit.
Fortunately, there is help out there, and heroin detox in West Palm Beach is the perfect place for many people to start their journey of recovery.
Heroin Detox in West Palm Beach: Heroin Abuse and Dependence
The excessive abuse of heroin leads to a medical condition known as chemical dependence, physical dependence or substance dependence. What this means is that you have become both physically and psychologically dependent on heroin. This is the first element of severe addiction.
Physical dependency becomes pretty apparent when you try to stop using heroin. When you try to stop using abruptly you will experience extremely uncomfortable physical and mental withdrawal symptoms, as well as obsessive and compulsive thoughts. Heroin detox in West Palm Beach can help you stop your heroin use by helping you address a physical dependence directly.
This kind of physical and psychological dependence can develop into a full-blown heroin addiction, which is a serious illness. Heroin addiction leads to devastation all many aspects of life, including:
- Physical health
- Mental health
Addiction to heroin is profoundly injurious to your personal relationships. A heroin addict is never the only one who they hurt, but their family and loved ones suffer, too.
Despite the devastating effects, the person struggling with a heroin addiction will typically continue to use until they are ready to make a change, if they are ever that fortunate. While in the grip of addiction, it is difficult to imagine life without heroin. Facilities for heroin detox in West Palm Beach can help.
Heroin Detox in West Palm Beach: Withdrawals
You don’t have to kick the habit on your own, and you don’t have to come up with all the answers alone. A heroin detox in West Palm Beach can help ease you off of heroin and other opiates gradually with the use of medications specifically designed to assist with your heroin withdrawal symptoms, so that they are much more manageable and so that you are kept in a safe and healthy environment, both physically and emotionally.
When you suddenly stop using heroin, it’s called going “cold turkey and it throws you almost immediately into withdrawal syndrome. Withdrawals are a set of specific symptoms, and for heroin there is a long and severe list of withdrawals including:
- Extreme anxiety
- Excessive yawning and sneezing
- Runny nose
- Cold sweats
- Severe muscle and bone aches
- Cramp-like pains
- Involuntary spasms in the legs, arms, and neck
Withdrawing from heroin on your own is difficult and pretty much impossible. In fact, many people break down and use again just to make the pain and discomfort go away; they are caught in a vicious cycle.
Heroin Detox in West Palm Beach: Gets You Started On the Right Foot
Heroin Detox in West Palm Beach consists of two phases: evaluation and stabilization. During the first stage you will be given an assessment in order to find out how much heroin is currently in your system, as well as how much you have been using and over what length of time. This is done by way of a urine drug screen, and with any further information you provide.
Because programs for heroin detox in West Palm Beach are in a medical setting in which you are treated for both physical dependence and addiction, the results of your drug screen and information disclosed during your assessment are strictly confidential just like any other medical information is. All of this is done in order to make a treatment plan that will best serve you.
During a program for heroin detox in West Palm Beach, you will be giving taper medications in order to wean you off of heroin in both a safe and comfortable way. Detoxing from heroin and other narcotic opiates like prescription painkillers should always be done in a caring and professional manner, where you will be given care specific to your needs. Heroin detox in West Palm Beach is one place to find this kind of quality care.
Are you struggling with a dependence on heroin? Are you trying to quit but have failed on your own? Are your seeking a Heroin Detox in West Palm Beach? If you or a loved one is struggling with heroin abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135. We want to help. You are not alone.
If you have become addicted to heroin, you are probable to experience some withdrawal symptoms when you stop using, but withdrawal can also occur after heavy use. The early comedown of heroin withdrawal can differ in time and strength, and even though usually withdrawal symptoms will begin 6 to 12 hours after the previous dosage, climaxing within 1 to 3 days, and slowly descending over 5 to 7 days. Yet, some users experience weeks or months of withdrawal symptoms, recognized as post acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS).
Heroin Detox and Cravings
A majority of individuals who are withdrawing from heroin experience an intense need to take more heroin. This is recognized as feeling cravings, and cravings are common amongst people withdrawing from several addictive substances. Part of the craving is motivated by the desire to decrease the symptoms of heroin withdrawal, and part of it is the want to re-experience the pleasure of the heroin high.
Heroin Detox and the Mood Changes
Feeling unhappy, uneasy or ill-tempered, also known as having a dysphoric mood, is a usual part of heroin withdrawal, and is the responsibility for the euphoria you experienced during the heroin high. Even though these feelings are often strong during heroin withdrawal, they have a habit of passing once the withdrawal phase is finished. If they do not pass, you should see your doctor for suitable treatment.
Heroin Detox and Physical Withdrawals
Part of the way heroin works is to block the body’s pain passageways. When you detox from heroin, there is a rebound effect, and you feel aching, predominantly in the back and legs, and feel more delicate to pain. As you go through heroin detox, you may experience an overproduction of physical fluids, such as sweat, tears, and a runny nose. You may also recognize your hairs standing on end. As with other physical withdrawal symptoms, this is part of your body bringing itself into stability.
A typical response of the body to heroin detox is diarrhea. It may be supplemented by stomach pain caused by tremors in the digestive system. Nausea and vomiting are standard (albeit distressing) aspects of heroin detox. It wears you out, makes you feel very uncomfortable, puts you off your food, and keeps you near the restroom. A fever is an elevated body temperature. A fever is one way your body fights illnesses or infections, but when you are going through heroin detox, the fever is not serving a useful purpose in fighting infection, so there is unlikely to be harm in taking steps to control it.
People going through heroin detox often feel agitation, which, joined with angst and sleeplessness, can make you feel quite restless. Heroin detox frequently causes sleep difficulties, mainly insomnia (having trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep). Yawning is also common during heroin detox. In my experience, heroin detox usually can last anywhere from 3 days to 2 weeks. If it goes on longer than that I would seek medical attention. If you or a loved one are struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll free 1-800-951-6135.
Heroin has a really, really bad reputation. It is touted as the worst drug on the face of the planet. Pictures of its users usually include homeless people in alleys shooting it up with dirty needles. What many people know about heroin is from what they see portrayed on television. Heroin and heroin users are surrounded by a cloud of hysteria, horrific media, and quick judgment. We are here to set the record straight. Because while heroin, yes, is very dangerous and addictive, some of what you may or may not know about this drug and its users are myth not fact.
And it is time to debunk the myths. This is drug myths debunked: Heroin.
Myth #1: Heroin users are dirty, broke, homeless people who use needles
The recent death of Glee star Corey Monteith should have laid this myth to rest but this myth will probably go on for as long as there are homeless people in alleys that are using heroin. Because the truth is yes, many homeless people shoot up heroin in alleys but they aren’t the only ones. Heroin use is not resigned to the broke “junkies”. There are many white collar, kids even, who are snorting or smoking (not shooting up) heroin with their weekly allowance. Not only that but there are people who seem very clean cut and put together such as Corey Monteith that use heroin. Heroin use doesn’t discriminate and heroin users are not as easily characterized as you may think. There are kids who go to a great college, get a degree, and all the while have an intense and life threatening heroin addiction. Heroin addiction can affect anyone despite their economic standing, education, race, sex, and location.
Myth #2: Heroin is more dangerous than alcohol.
This myth is false. Heroin is not more dangerous as alcohol. Alcohol is just as dangerous as heroin. The truth is alcohol in a lot of ways is even more dangerous than heroin. Alcohol just happens to be more socially accepted. The reasons that alcohol is more dangerous than heroin could go on and on. For instance, that the withdrawal from alcohol could kill you and heroin withdrawal is not fatal. Alcohol’s effects on the body and brain are much more intense and long lasting. Heroin has some medical benefit as an opiate even though it is an illicit drug whereas alcohol has none. Just because a drug is socially accepted or not socially accepted doesn’t make it any more or less safe.
Myth #3: If you try heroin even once you will become addicted immediately
Addiction is a complex disease that takes a while to develop. It is not the same as physical dependence – you can be physically dependent on a substance but not addicted. It takes time for a heroin user to develop physical tolerance and even though it is a very addictive substance the true state of addiction will also take some time to manifest. This doesn’t mean that trying heroin even once is safe. It just means that if you do or have done heroin once and then never used it again this is why.
Myth #4: About what to do when someone overdoses on heroin
There are many myths about overdosing and what to do if someone is overdosing or on how to prevent overdosing. These myths include putting someone in a bath or shower which can lead to drowning and death. Slapping, hitting or pinching a person will not rouse a person into consciousness nor will trying to make them walk around when they are slipping into unconsciousness. Some people believe that inducing vomiting will reduce the drug affects but this is dangerous and may lead to choking. Some intravenous drug users believe that injecting a person with another drug, such as amphetamines or adrenaline when they are overdosing on heroin, will reverse the overdose (remember the scene from Pulp Fiction? In reality, intracardiac injection is old fashioned and an extreme last resort, and, Narcan, not adrenaline, is used to revive a heroin OD). Salt water and milk injection are also other common myths. The fact is if someone is overdosing on heroin you need to call 911 immediately. Someone who is overdosing on heroin is not going to just kill over like many people think either. Many times a heroin overdose is gradual and the breathing will slowly stop. So there is time. Get help!
Heroin is a dangerous drug that should not be taken lightly. The best way to prevent heroin use and heroin overdose is to know the facts. Heroin abuse and knowledge about heroin that is based in myth is not effective and can lead to many problems and in the worst case scenarios such as heroin overdose, death. Know the facts, know the truth and share it.
If someone you know is in need of treatment for heroin addiction, please give us a call at 800-951-6135.
What Are Opiates?
Opiates refer to a class of narcotic drugs that are originally derived from the Opium plant but may be synthetic, or man-made. Opiates include Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone – basically, any of your prescription painkillers. Oh and of course heroin.
People take and abuse opiates because of their painkilling effects: decreased perception of pain, decreased reaction to pain and increased pain tolerance. Opiates produce a sedating effect as well as a strong sense of euphoria, called the “rush” or “high.”
What is Opiate Withdrawal Syndrome?
Abruptly stopping opiates will cause what is known as withdrawal syndrome: a set of symptoms that you will experience when you suddenly no longer have opiates in your system. These symptoms include: sweating, chills, vomiting, diarrhea, restlessness, insomnia, anxiety, depression, excessive yawning, runny nose, muscles aches, and more. The withdrawal from opiates is very uncomfortable and many people find themselves going back to using because they cannot stand the pain and discomfort. This is why an opiate detox should be considered.
Why go to an Opiate Detox in Florida?
Plain and simple: an opiate detox is the best alternative to going cold turkey and stopping on your own. It is a safer and more comfortable environment than say your friend’s couch. Many people seek an opiate detox in Florida because of its warm weather, sunshine, and beaches. Believe me, when you are detoxing from opiates, you will want to be in this kind of environment: comfort is key.
What is an Opiate Detox?
An opiate detox is a facility that provides a medical detoxification program to specifically help you get off opiates with diminished withdrawal symptoms. There is a trained medical staff at the opiate detox that can administer medication(s) to ease withdrawal symptoms and who monitor you while you go through the process of detoxification from opiates.
The 5 Steps of Opiate Detox in Florida
1. Admission to the Opiate Detox in Florida
The first step is checking into a detox program for opiate dependence. Assuming you have done research as to what and where the program for opiate detox in Florida are, you will follow their instructions for what to bring and when to come for check-in.
During evaluation at the opiate detox in Florida of your choosing, you will meet with a staff person who will take your social and medical history. This means that you will tell them about your drug use and health conditions, if any. You will also do a drug screen so that the medical staff can know exactly what drug or drugs you have been taking and the level or amount of those drugs that are in your system at the time of check-in. This is not done for legal reasons and you will not get in any trouble. It is necessary to do a drug test so that you can be treated properly during your detox process. And you will want the staff to know what and how much you’ve been taking so that they can treat you accordingly and make the process as comfortable as possible.
3. Meet with Medical Doctor/Psychiatrist
You will meet with a medical doctor to have the necessary medications prescribed to you for your opiate detox. You will also meet with a medical doctor to have any other medications prescribed to you if you have other health issues. Also, you will meet with a psychiatrist to be evaluated and prescribed any psych meds that you may need. Oftentimes, people who abuse drugs have a co-occurring diagnosis, also called dual diagnosis, such as depression, anxiety disorder, or bipolar disorder.
4. Stabilization at the Opiate Detox in Florida
During the stabilization stage of opiate detox in Florida, you will be given certain medications to ease the withdrawal systems that you will begin to experience. Stabilization means to regulate and maintain your condition. So that once you are on your meds, you will be kept at a certain level of medication and slowly tapered off so as to reduce the shock to your system of being without opiates.
5. Discharge from the Opiate Detox in Florida
Opiate detox in Florida can last from 4 to as many as 10 days, depending on the amount of opiates you had been taking and how you are feeling from day to day. You will meet with a therapist to evaluate your progress. The therapist may make recommendations as to continuing care such as rehabilitation so that you do not go back to using opiates.
If your loved one is in need of opiate detox in Florida, please give us a call at 800-951-6135