September 15, 2019 2 min to read
What you need to know about heroin addiction and withdrawal
Category : Health
Heroin is one of the most addictive and dangerous substances on the planet. There is extensive coverage of the damage that this substance is doing nationwide.
However, living through it is a different story. Between 2010 and 2017 there was over a 400% increase in heroin-related overdose deaths, according to the Center for Disease Control.
Statistics like this don’t do heroin justice. Tori Herr died in a Pennsylvania prison due to her withdrawing from heroin on April 5, 2015.
While held in jail, Tori couldn’t keep fluids down and was suffering from dehydration. Eventually, she collapsed and went into cardiac arrest. She died a few days later in a local hospital.
The coroner ruled the death accidental and in 2016 her family sued Lebanon county where she died. Recently, news that Tori’s family will be awarded $4.75 million dollars to settle their wrongful death lawsuit against the county.
This heartbreaking story just highlights the immense problems opioids are causing nationwide. The National Institute of Health, NIH, reports that 11.5 million Americans abused prescription pain medicine in 2016.
Many people start out on prescription painkillers like Oxycodone. However, these drugs are expensive and the cost can quickly become prohibitive.
People often turn to heroin for financial reasons. The potency of heroin is hard to match, and when a person runs out, it’s heroin they need more of.
The prescription opioids cease to have much effect after the switch, causing people to go to great lengths to get more heroin.
The nature of illicit drug addiction involves periods where obtaining the drug seems impossible. During these times, people often start to experience the beginnings of withdrawal.
The pain is enough that many are terrified of running out after their first experience with the withdrawal symptoms.
Disease of Addiction
In the past decades, the common belief about addicted individuals was that the person lacked in moral character. People mistakenly thought that people who kept using a substance wanted to continue and had complete control over their using.
Today, we know better. Substance Use Disorder, SUD, is a mental illness that can be mild to severe. Mild substance abuse means that the person has two or three symptoms of SUD. Severe SUD is diagnosed when someone has six or more symptoms.
Symptoms can vary between people; however, some are common to most. Compulsive using, plotting to get more and continuing to…
Read more about heroin addiction on Daisy Linden’s blog.