It is an unfortunate fact that many Americans today, some of them as young as 15 or so, abuse dangerous drugs such as heroin or opiates either to numb pain or recreationally. Such drugs habits are not only highly illegal, but they can completely twist a person’s life out of shape, and a person’s work life, personal life, and finances may be ruined by addiction to heroin or addiction to opioids. Not to mention the great health risks that an addict faces, especially if he or she lives alone where a person cannot help them if they overdose. But it may never be too late for an addict to seek recovery with the aid of medical professionals, and treatment for heroin addiction can be done by the addict’s own will or an intervention by family members and concerned friends. Treatment centers can be found in most major American cities, and a person can look online to find local ones, with an online query such as “heroin addiction treatment Chicago” or “methadone center Los Angeles CA”. For those unaware, methadone is a medically prescribed drug that can help heroin addicts recover from their addiction, and is often successful at this. Treatment for heroin addiction may never be far away.
Addiction and the Need For Treatment For Heroin Addiction
How often are Americans becoming addicted to dangerous drugs, and when is it time for them to get treatment for heroin addiction? Statistics are kept to find out how often Americans are abusing such substances, and even their age or how likely they are to die from an overdose. Back in 2015, for a fairly recent example, nearly 591,000 people suffered from a disorder of heroin use, and among them, 6,000 were teenagers, and 155,000 were young adults, such as in their 20s. And as of that year, among the 20.5 million Americans aged 12 or over who abused substances, two million of them had an addiction to prescription pain relievers and 591,000 of them were those with heroin abuse problems, as mentioned earlier. Four in five new heroin users, in fact, started out by using prescription pain relievers, and it is generally believed that 23% of those who use heroin develop an opioid addiction at some point. It is possible to use such drugs without developing an addiction, but in all cases, misuse of these drugs if of course illegal, and an overdose is always possible. And sometimes, an overdose can kill. What can be done?
A number of steps can be taken to help an addict get treatment for heroin addiction, and this may start with an intervention for the addict by concerned friends and family, who will highlight the problem and how it negatively impacts them. Interventions often involve emotional appeals and the expressed desire to see the addict recover for everyone’s sake. Given that the addict agrees, they can take another step: detox. Detox from a drug addiction can be difficult, and in some cases even dangerous, so an addict is discouraged from attempting this at home. Rather, an addict should find and visit a local detox center, where medical professionals can oversee the process and make sure that it is safe and proceeds smoothly.
A drug addict will be supervised and given time for a drug to leave their body, and the symptoms of this will vary based on the drug, such as goosebumps, shivers, aches, vomiting headaches, insomnia, racing thoughts, or even seizures. This is one reason why the detox process is medically supervised, and it may in fact be dangerous for a person to attempt this alone at home, aside from the temptation to use the drug again to relieve those symptoms.
Once detox is complete after a day or two, the patient will be given therapy and counseling services to confront their addiction and its causes, and any number of medical and psychological treatments will be used to help the patient rid themselves of their addiction and live without the drugs. This may include anonymous support groups, and a social circle can help recovering addicts reinforce each other positively on their attempts to clear themselves of drug use. This can often prove highly effective for those seeking recovery.