Heroin is an incredibly powerful and devastating drug that falls into the opioid class of drugs.
The word opioid alone most likely conjures thoughts of the enduring epidemic the United States is still struggling with.
“From 1999–2019, nearly 500,000 people died from an overdose involving any opioid, including prescription and illicit opioids”, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Of course, that’s not all related to heroin but as an opioid, it does play a role and in that same stretch, 1999 to 2019, 130,00 people died from overdoses related to heroin. The amount of those deaths was 7 times higher in 2019 than in 2019.
It’s important to note here that heroin is illegal, an illicit opioid as it’s commonly phrased. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) labels it a Schedule I drug it has “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse”.
As we’ve all collectively come to find out in the last couple of decades, that abuse has come to pass and the devastation that heroin and other opioids have left in their wake have been catastrophic.
What Is Heroin?
What exactly is this drug that in 2019 was involved in nearly 20% of all drug overdose deaths?
As defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), “Heroin is an opioid drug made from morphine, a natural substance taken from the seed pod of the various opium poppy plants grown in Southeast and Southwest Asia, Mexico, and Colombia. Heroin can be a white or brown powder, or a black sticky substance known as black tar heroin.”
It can be taken in a variety of ways; smoked, injected, sniffed or snorted.
You may naturally be wondering if there is some sort of link between prescription opioids and heroin given that they function in essentially the same way.
Research shows that to some extent that does look to be the case.
Data from 2002 to 2012 showed that the “incidence of heroin initiation was 19 times higher among those who reported prior nonmedical pain reliever use than among those who did not”. Additionally, and more to the previous point, “data from 2011 showed that an estimated 4 to 6 percent who misuse prescription opioids switch to heroin and about 80 percent of people who used heroin first misused prescription opioids.”.
Some contributing factors that drive the transition to heroin and its use in general are the extremely high availability and the low price compared to prescription opioids.
As NIDA notes, “a number of studies have suggested that people transitioning from abuse of prescription opioids to heroin cite that heroin is cheaper, more available, and provides a better high”.
Does a Heroin Addiction Require Rehab?
Given what we’ve come to learn as a society about the ravages of opioids and heroin, it has become increasingly clear that rehab goes a long way in helping people beat their addiction.
Heroin is a powerful, powerful drug that sinks its teeth deeply into people and doesn’t let up without a lot of fight.
Dedicated treatment gives you the support system and guidance you need to create a solid foundation upon which to build the rest of your life on. Heroin rehab in Los Angeles at Inneractions is honed and shaped by over 30 years of impassioned experience in helping people get through their darkest and lowest times.
Treatment is designed to help you discover the root causes of your addiction to heroin and learn new, healthy ways to deal with those issues as well as the triggers that will continue to arise going forward. In both individual and group sessions – utilizing evidence-based modalities and complementary therapies – you’ll work with our addiction specialists to break the cycle.
Reach out to us today to learn more about our program for heroin addiction.