However, you’re not required to make sustaining a heroin habit easier. Some people may also experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking heroin suddenly. If a person takes too large a dose, they may unintentionally overdose. Healthcare experts may also refer to heroin misuse as a substance use disorder (SUD). This has similar criteria to an OUD but refers to the misuse of a variety of substances rather than opioids, such as heroin, specifically.Learn more about addiction symptoms.

A quality addiction treatment facility will have the tools and expertise to avoid or address these symptoms through medical detox. Rather than quit “cold turkey,” patients are given medication therapy, which relieves symptoms and stabilizes brain chemistry so they can benefit from other forms of therapy like group and individual counseling. Recovery from heroin addiction should always be comprehensive, including an inpatient and/or outpatient treatment program following detox.

How to Respond to a Heroin Overdose

These different forms of heroin can be smoked, snorted, or injected under the skin, into muscle, or directly into the veins. New health issues, such as changes in sleep schedule, often appearing fatigued or run-down, pronounced weight loss or weight gain, glassy or bloodshot eyes, and forgetfulness or other cognition problems. Depending heroin addiction treatment on the type of drug they’re abusing, they may also exhibit frequent sniffing, nosebleeds, or shaking. You could provide the gentle pressure your loved one needs to change life for the better. Organizations like Nar-Anon and Al-Anon offer people touched by addiction the opportunity to come together to learn, grow and connect.

The red spots indicated a build up of those beta-amyloid proteins…the so-called brain plaque…a marker of Alzheimer’s. Dr. Rezai explained to Miller he couldn’t cure him of the disease, but he hoped to slow its progression. That kind of implant surgery is now routine for advanced Parkinson’s.

Is Heroin Addictive?

You don’t have to wait for your loved one to hit rock bottom—to get arrested, lose their job, suffer a medical emergency, or publicly humiliate themselves—to speak out. The clinical services offered through this website are provided by Bicycle Health Medical Group, PA and Bicycle Health Provider Group Inc., that are independent, physician-owned medical groups. For more information about the relationship between Bicycle Health, Inc. and the Bicycle Health Medical Group, PA and/or Bicycle Health Inc. and the Bicycle Health Provider Group Inc., click here. Naloxone, the main ingredient in Narcan spray, is an opioid agonist. A dose removes heroin from its receptors, pushing the person into immediate sobriety. Life with an addiction is incredibly dangerous and difficult.

Ultimately, all you can control is how well you look after your own health and welfare. Despite your efforts and your loved one’s best intentions, the truth is that recovery often involves relapse. If that happens, encourage the person to recommit to getting clean and support them as they try again. Each relapse is an opportunity for your loved one to learn from their mistakes and find a new way forward. Recovery for one person may mean total abstinence from drugs. For another, it could mean cutting back or staying mostly drug-free.

Opioid Treatment Program Directory

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides a free national helpline. The service is confidential and available 24-7, every day of the year. Doctors tailor their treatment approach to the individual needs of the person. If a person experiences an overdose or poisoning due to taking heroin, doctors will administer naloxone (Narcan). People who are in withdrawal may exhibit signs of agitation and anxiety. All Addiction Resource content is medically reviewed or fact checked to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

help for heroin addiction

A person on heroin may not look like they’re “on drugs.” They may just seem sleepy. People who are addicted almost always deny that they’re using. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps you pay attention to the things you think and do when it comes to drug use.

Prepare for a Potential Heroin Overdose

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable media sites, academic research institutions and, whenever possible, medically peer reviewed studies. Select a few addiction counselors in your area and take into account the preferences your loved one may have, such as the gender and age of their counselor. Addiction, tolerance, and dependence are three likely outcomes once someone begins using heroin. Mental health and wellness tips, our latest guides, resources, and more. Take the assessment and get matched with a professional, licensed therapist.

  • When someone you love has a problem with drugs, it’s easy to fall into the trap of shielding them from the consequences of their addiction.
  • Another type of therapy called contingency management offers rewards such as vouchers or money if you can stay drug-free.
  • Starting a conversation with someone about their drug addiction is never easy, but it’s important you come from a place of compassion and understanding.
  • Your loved one may run up credit card debt to support their drug use, seek loans, or ask to borrow money without any solid reason.
  • Find treatment programs in your state that treat addiction and dependence on opioids.

Mental health disorders such as depression may develop or worsen, and men may experience sexual disfunction while women might have irregular menstrual cycles. Like any other drug, various processing methods yield different forms of the same drug with varying potencies. Heroin has three primary forms that are ingested in distinct ways, as described below. If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, out-of-date, or otherwise questionable, please contact at

They may even neglect their appearance and personal hygiene, and suffer withdrawal symptoms if deprived of their drug of choice. Send your loved one links to treatment providers and online resources. Open up a conversation, ensuring that the person understands that MAT is an option, and you’re willing to make it happen. Yes, the person you love chose to take heroin the first time. And yes, the person keeps using heroin when you don’t want them to do so.