Understanding the Dangers of Heroin Abuse and Addiction


Understanding the Dangers of Heroin Abuse and Addiction

Heroin, bought by users illegally, is a highly addictive drug that can be smoked, snorted, or injected. Heroin abuse and addiction can cause harmful psychological and physical effects on a person, even fatal consequences. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, from 2002 to 2011, the number of drug poisoning deaths involving heroin doubled, from 2,089 deaths in 2002 to 4,397 deaths in 2011.


Once a user gets addicted to heroin, they cannot stop. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, because drugs can change the brain in ways that promotes compulsive drug abuse, it makes quitting difficult, even for those that are ready to do so. The best way to protect your health, or a loved from the dangers of heroin use is to learn about the negative effects it causes.

The Dangers of Abusing Heroin

Taking a drug in ways other than how it should be used is considered drug abuse, such as taking a medically prescribed drug more often than directed. Using illicit drugs is drug abuse, heroin is an illegal drug, and those that use heroin are abusing it. The probability of a heroin abuser becoming addicted to heroin is extremely high.

Effects and Signs of Heroin Abuse

  • Behavior Changes
  • Weight Loss
  • Increased Sleeping
  • Needle Marks on Arms or Legs (If Injected)
  • Loss of Interest in Work or School
  • Slurred Speech
  • Difficulty Focusing
  • Disoriented
  • Hyper Alertness Followed by Fatigue

Signs of Heroin Addiction

  • Stealing Money to Get More Heroin
  • Unable to Control the Need for More Heroin
  • Showing Hostility and Anger Towards Others
  • Lying About Drug Use (Even When it's Clear They Are Using)
  • Lack of Interest in Family Activities
  • Poor Hygiene
  • No Care for Physical Appearance
  • Abscesses Around Areas of Needle Marks
  • Constant Runny Nose (Due to Snorting)

The effects, signs, and symptoms of heroin abuse are not limited to those above. Heroin can affect individual users in various ways. Factors that can cause different effects on people that use heroin include the amount used, the length of time using heroin, and even their current health and life circumstances. Heroin builds tolerance in the body and can lead to addiction easily, trying to abruptly quit can produce painful withdrawal effects.

Heroin Use Withdrawal Symptoms

Heroin addicts that try to abruptly stop using heroin can experience seriously painful symptoms from withdrawal. Some of the withdrawal symptoms that a heroin user can experience when trying to stop include:

  • Intense Craving for Heroin
  • Sweating
  • Nausea and Vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle Pains and Spasms


The safest way for a heroin addict to quit is with treatment for heroin addiction, and detoxification under medical supervision to assure safety. Heroin addiction has many dangerous consequences that should not be ignored.

Dangerous Consequences of Heroin Use

Heroin abuse can lead to an overdose, even from first time use. An overdose can put a person in a coma, cause a stroke or heart attack, and even death as mentioned earlier. If you or someone you love is using heroin, the best you can do to avoid further harm, is to contact an addiction specialist 800-853-1387 that can give you the guidance and knowledge needed to seek help for heroin addiction.

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