Heroin addiction is a nightmare for anyone who has been unlucky enough to experience it. The drug, which gives its users a euphoric high, is often followed by a cycle of highly uncomfortable physical withdrawal that, in many cases, perpetuates the abuse of the drug. Addicts will do whatever is necessary to avoid withdrawal, even if it means having to take the drug just to keep from being sick.
Early warning signs of heroin abuse may not be easily spotted unless you as the onlooker know exactly what to look for. Learning some of these key indicators of opiate use could save a life.
Is Your Loved One Using Heroin?
Although there are some telltale signs of opiate use that are more easily spotted than others, some indications canremain hidden until it’s much too late.
Early-Stage Signs of Heroin Use
At the onset of a heroin habit, you might notice some of the following changes in the user:
- Loss of interest
- Lack of personal hygiene or a poor physical appearance
- Unexplained absences from work, school or other commitments
- Little or no motivation
- Mood swings (ranging from depression and listlessness to anxious or violent outbursts)
Early physical signs that someone may be under the influence of heroin include a generally “heavy” appearance, runny nose, drowsiness or nodding off at odd times, dry mouth, disorientation, nausea and constricted pupils.
Later-Stage Signs of Heroin Use
As a heroin dependency grows more severe, some of the following more blatant signs may present themselves:
- Excessive weight loss
- Odd sleeping patterns
- Bruised or scabbed skin
- Infected open sores
- Long-sleeved clothing in warm weather (to cover injection site wounds)
If a user is experiencing opiate withdrawal symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle/bone aches, etc.), this is a tell-tale sign that the heroin habit has become so severe that the body needs the drug in order to function properly without becoming ill.
Narconon Treatment for Opiate Addiction
“Heroin addiction can be tough an addict’s thoughts and efforts are consumed with how they will get more drugs or how they will get money for more drugs,” says Derry Hallmark, Senior Director For Expansion at Narconon Arrowhead. “It can seem like an unending cycle, a downward spiral but with the right type of treatment, heroin addiction can be fully overcome.”
Narconon has been successfully treating heroin addicts for over 40 years. Narconon’s founder, Mr. William Benitez, established the program as a solution to his own heroin addiction and began to offer its workable technologies to others struggling with substance abuse. The program now achieves a more than 70% success rate for permanent recovery and addresses addictions to heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, prescription drugs, ecstasy and more.
As is the case with many other severe medical conditions, early prognosis is a highly important factor in effectively treating an addiction. “Knowing the signs and symptoms of heroin addiction is the key to getting someone help early on,” adds Hallmark. “Long-term, individualized treatment is the key to really ensuring the addiction is overcome.”
According to statistics reported in the 2012 National Survery on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), the number of those who have used heroin in the past year increased between 2007 and 2012. The estimated 669,000 heroin users in the United States indicates a serious and growing problem.
For more information or to get help for yourself or a loved one contact Narconon Arrowhead today at 800-468-6933.