Heroin is a drug that is synthesized from morphine which is a substance that naturally occurs from the seed pod of the Asian opium poppy plant. This is an illegal drug for it is known to have so many side effects in the people who use it. The substance does not necessarily have to be in powder form which is normally white. It can also be black where it is referred to as black tar heroin. Heroin can either be injected, snorted or smoked. Whichever means used the substance gets to the body and straight to the brain. Injection of heroin makes it easier since it goes direct to the bloodstream. Any user of heroin is bound to be addicted to it and this does not matter whether the means of using it are smoking sniffing or injection. The feeling at first feels cool and leads one to the second trial and within a short time, addiction falls in and the use becomes a huge addict. This is not bad news for the consequences of the use are totally complex for there are severe health complications.
How does heroin affect the brain?
Once heroin gets into the brain, it is converted into morphine and joins to receptors known as opioid receptors. You find that these receptors are located in the brain but they are also found in other parts of the body. These are the key receptors that are responsible for detection of pain. At the same time, these receptors are also found at the stem of the brain which is the centre for the most important part for the automatic functioning of the body. For instance, the normal heart beat rate nerves will be sent from here as well as maintaining blood pressure. Breathing is also part of this as we know it is supposed to be automatic. Arousal is also part of the list and when this substance is overdosed, there will be a suppression of the respiration.
When it comes to the users who inject the drug, the initial stages will involve rush “euphoria” which is followed b y mouth drying, a warm flush of the skin, heaviness and also clouded mental functioning. However, the rush will not be experienced by people who administer the drug via other means but then, the rest of the effects are always clearly visible. The more heroin being administered to the body, the lesser effects one experiences. This means by the time the substance is already used to the body, the user basically will be an addict. It is too bad that the addiction level of heroin is completely different from that of any other substance being abused. The fact of the matter is that 23% of the users of this substance have become completely dependent on it.
Other effects of heroin on health
The abuse of heroin is associated with the most complicated health conditions including fatal overdose and also abortion. The chronic users may develop veins, infection of the heart lining and valves. This means there are higher chances of having pulmonary complications which will be accompanies by various pneumonia types. This is due to the fact that there is a lot of effects that heroin has in the respiratory system which will bring about all these different types of pneumonia problems. In addition to that, use of heroin will also lead to clogging of the blood vessels which means the main organs such as heart, lungs, kidneys and brain will be affected which clearly spells trouble. It is due to the chronic use of the drug that has led to so many people living lives of depending on heroin. They basically cannot do anything if there is no element of the drug in the head. It simply means that withdraw of the drug will be the most complicated duty to be administered to anyone. If anyone tries to stop or reducing on the amount of dosage, there will be complications such as restlessness, muscle and bone pain, vomiting and diarrhea. Goose bumps will also follow together with some kicking movements. In most instances, these symptoms will show up after 48 hours or 72 hours of the last intake.
Withdrawal of heroin is always preferred compared to that of alcohol. However, the heavy users of heroine are at fatal positions if they withdraw suddenly. With all the symptoms seen, they could have very hard times when on it especially if they are of poor health. The truth about heroin is that the craving for it will never go within a day. It will always be there for years but then, it comes mostly when the former user is triggered on situations such as stress or when the person is near people or places where the drug is taken. Pregnant women on the drug need to be on the best diets ever considering that poor health on pregnant women who are addicts leads to giving birth to kids with low birth weights which becomes a factor to low developing in the years to come.
The child to be born will not be safe at all since the fact that the mother fed him with the drug while in the womb means he also got addicted to the drug. Therefore, the child comes and becomes a real addict of the drug which turns to be hell for the doctors trying to stop that.
Treatment for addiction
The fact that there is a high addiction of this substance does not mean that there is no treatment that can try stopping it. There are some medications that will help the person in question but then, this medication needs to come along with other types of support. Like stated earlier, the addiction is quite intense and to stop it might be hard. But with the support from the medication and the sacrifice the user will have, it might make the process easier which is better than leaving the substance and assuming all will be well.