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4 Signs of Heroin Abuse

Woman looks out window pensively, thinking about signs of heroin abuse

Heroin addiction is a monster. The drug has the ability to temporarily numb a person’s pain, but it does not allow people to heal and flourish. The feelings of euphoria associated with heroin use are short-lived, while heroin addiction is not. Looking for “substance abuse treatment near me?” Rise Above Treatment offers addiction treatment and detox to help you or a loved one recognize the signs of heroin abuse and get on the road to recovery. Reach out to an addiction specialist at (877) 641-0717 today.

4 Signs of Heroin Addiction

When someone becomes addicted to heroin, the changes are unforgettable. Below are five signs of heroin abuse:

1. Changes In Appearance

When someone begins abusing heroin consistently, they often stop caring about their appearance. Heroin users often lose weight rapidly as a result of not eating enough and vomiting often. In addition, heroin users sleep excessively and always appear drowsy.

People with opioid addiction often have collapsed veins or skin infections due to intravenous drug use. You may also notice other physical signs like skin infections or collapsed veins.

2. Track Marks

Needle injection is the most popular method of using heroin. Using needles to inject heroin comes at a cost as there will be track marks in the form of needle marks, scars, bruises, and scabs. These marks will be present on their hands, arms, feet, and legs. If users heat needles before injecting, there will also be a black material present near the injection site.

Patches of dark skin are also signs of inflammation and infection that are a result of heroin use. Heroin users will typically wear long-sleeve shirts and pants even in hot weather to conceal the appearance of their track marks.

3. Nodding Off

When people use heroin, it suppresses the central nervous system, making the body slow down. When a person’s body slows down, a person’s blood pressure, temperature, and heart rate also slow down. This makes users drowsy and prevents them from remaining focused and aware of their surroundings. Many people refer to this drift between consciousness and unconsciousness as nodding off. Nodding off is a clear indication that someone is using heroin because they will lean over or hunch their bodies down when drifting in and out of consciousness.

4. Behavioral Changes

Differences in appearance and behavior are major signs that people abuse heroin. They often stop caring about their physical health and hygiene. Most of the time, they lose weight quickly and sleep for excessive amounts of time. Mood changes are common as well. Using heroin makes people erratic and sometimes aggressive. They might also develop depression.

In addition, those who abuse heroin obsess over the drug. Because of that, they lose interest in hobbies, neglect family obligations, and perform poorly at work. These actions can damage their relationships and cause job loss.

Drug Paraphernalia Associated With Heroin Addiction

Heroin users rely on specific paraphernalia in order to use. These tools include:

  • Burned foil
  • Syringes
  • Burned spoons
  • Rubber tubes
  • Belts
  • Lighters
  • Cotton balls
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Straws
  • Rolled-up dollar bills

Having drug paraphernalia is a sign of heroin abuse. And an even bigger indication of addiction: hiding paraphernalia. It is not uncommon that these items can be found in a heroin user’s bedroom, car, bathroom, or other living space.

Heroin Addiction Treatment

Heroin addiction treatment is designed to help individuals struggling with heroin abuse and dependence. It involves both medical and psychological treatment strategies that focus on helping people overcome their cravings, manage withdrawal symptoms, and achieve long-term sobriety. Treatment typically includes medication-assisted therapy (MAT) such as buprenorphine, individual and group counseling, vocational and educational opportunities, support groups, and relapse prevention programs. With the right kind of treatment and support, individuals can achieve recovery from heroin addiction.

Heroin addiction treatment is personalized based on an individual’s needs. Treatment may include medication to help manage withdrawal symptoms as well as psychological therapy to address underlying issues and help the individual cope with difficult emotions. Also, treatment is designed to provide support for recovery by helping individuals develop healthy coping skills, build supportive relationships, and obtain stable housing and employment opportunities.

This is an ongoing process that requires commitment, effort, and dedication. It’s important to maintain regular follow-up appointments with a healthcare provider and attend support group meetings to ensure sustained recovery. With the right kind of treatment, individuals can regain control over their lives and achieve long-term sobriety.

Fight Opioid Addiction at Rise Above Treatment

If you or a loved one is ready to kick a heroin addiction, we are here to help you through the process. While it is admirable to go cold turkey, the severity of the withdrawal is too great to do without medical guidance and support.

Our residential treatment program will help you fight opioid addiction and heroin addiction by including medical detox, therapy, and a community of sober peers. Get started on the road to recovery by calling Rise Above Treatment at (877) 641-0717 today.

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