One of the most dangerous and addictive substances in the United States today is heroin. Heroin is an opioid that is derived from the poppy plant. It has similar properties to morphine, oxycodone, and codeine. Many people seek out heroin and other opioids because of their pleasurable and pain-relieving effects. However, many people do not consider the dangers of heroin withdrawal symptoms.
Heroin has gained popularity due to the increase of addiction to prescription painkillers as it costs less and is more readily available. When people can no longer afford or maintain access to prescription opioids, they may turn to heroin.
About Detox and Withdrawal
Detox is often the first step of recovery. Detox is the process in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances. Going through the detox process will allow the individual to have a fresh start when beginning treatment.
However, detox is not simple. When a person begins detox, they will experience heroin withdrawal symptoms. Since the body has developed a dependence on the substance to function normally, the body reacts negatively to its absence.
Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms
Heroin withdrawal that is not treated with medication assisted treatment typically occurs in three phases. Each phase is marked by distinct heroin withdrawal symptoms and has a rough timeline of duration. Overall, heroin withdrawal symptoms should last no longer than two weeks.
During the first stage of heroin detox, heroin withdrawal symptoms will be mild. This occurs within the first three days of last use. They may include symptoms such as:
- Muscle aches
- Sweating and trembling
In the second stage, symptoms become more uncomfortable. This is the peak of heroin withdrawal symptoms and can last anywhere from three to five days. These symptoms may include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Stomach cramps
During the final stage of heroin withdrawal, the symptoms will begin to decline. There are a few withdrawal symptoms that may continue. These may include:
Entering a detox program where the symptoms of heroin detox can be alleviated with medication makes the detox easier and more manageable.
Long-Term Health Effects of Heroin Use
Of course, the use of addictive substances can lead to long-term health problems. The longer and more severe a person’s addiction is, the more likely they are to experience long-term heroin health effects. These effects may resemble withdrawal symptoms, but persist long after the typical detox timeline. Some of these health effects include:
- Difficulty making decisions
- Inability to regulate behavior
- Memory problems
With the help of a qualified heroin detox center in Berkeley, California, those struggling with heroin withdrawal symptoms and health effects can learn how to manage their symptoms and prevent relapse in the long-term.
Treatment at New Bridge Foundation®
Heroin addiction can consume all parts of a person’s life, but there is hope. New Bridge Foundation® in Berkeley, California offers comprehensive addiction treatment programs that will help clients overcome drug dependence. Our programs include:
- Short-Term Residential Rehab (Helios)
- Short-Term Outpatient Program (Helios)
- Long-Term Residential Treatment (START)
Recovery begins here. Contact New Bridge Foundation® today at 866.772.8491 to learn more.