Heroin is an illicit, powerful, and deadly drug that has the potential to drastically change everything in your life, including your emotional state, the function of your brain, and your physical appearance. While the short-term effects can be tragic, there are many long-term effects of heroin use that could forever alter or end your life. If you or someone you love is struggling with heroin addiction and wants to begin heroin recovery, contact Midwest Recovery online or call us at 833.627.0039 today to learn how our heroin addiction program can help.
The Long-Term Effects of Heroin
Heroin is an opiate that binds to the brain’s opioid receptors when it’s taken. This process creates a rush of dopamine that is intoxicating and addictive because, in part, it is more significant than is possible to receive naturally. This tidal wave of dopamine is what creates the euphoric high a user feels after they take heroin. The brain then develops a desire to replicate this intense, pleasurable feeling, which causes the urge to use heroin again and again, eventually leading to addiction and hopefully the process of recovering from heroin addiction.
Over time, the human body develops a tolerance to heroin, meaning that, in a way, your brain has been rewired to feel normal only when heroin is present inside your system. The long-term effects of heroin begin once your body has adjusted to the heroin use and the dopamine hit. It’s here when you will not even feel a high anymore, not even right after taking heroin, which will cause you to increase the dosage to feel anything even remotely as pleasurable as you once experienced.
The long-term effects of heroin ultimately bring about changes in the structure and the physiology of your brain. And although heroin recovery is possible with the assistance of a heroin rehab program like the one offered at Midwest Recovery, the impacts on your hormone systems are difficult to reverse. Additionally, heroin use can cause a decline in the white matter of your brain, causing problems with:
The physical dependence on heroin can lead to withdrawal symptoms if you stop using it. These symptoms can include:
- Flu-like symptoms
- Severe pain
- Gastrointestinal issues
The Importance of a Heroin Rehab Program
Heroin causes immense pain and problems to your body and quality of life in the short term, but what heroin does to your body in the long term can be catastrophic and deadly. Some of the long-term effects of heroin can include:
- Oral health problems (damaged teeth, swelling of gums)
- Skin problems
- Extreme constipation and malnutrition
- A weakened immune system
- Sleep problems
- Sexual function issue
Along with the ways heroin impacts your body over time, there can be even more dangerous ways the drug can destroy your overall health. This includes:
- Organ damage to the liver and kidneys from infectious diseases (from needle sharing and injection)
- Brain damage from a lack of oxygen occurs during overdoses.
Additionally, users who regularly inject heroin into their bodies may have even more severe health issues, some of which include infections of the heart valves, bacterial infections, and abscesses. While chronic heroin users also often have:
- Lung problems
- Development of tuberculosis
- Irregular menstrual cycles or an end to cycles altogether
Injecting heroin can lead to scarred and collapsed veins, blood infections, and soft tissue infections. Tissue in your vital organs may be damaged or destroyed, and because of immune reactions to contaminants often found in heroin, it can lead to arthritis and other similar problems.
Seeking professional, skilled, and compassionate care in a heroin rehab program and slowly recovering from heroin addiction can help to stem the tide of these horrific long-term effects for heroin. The drug may have a tight grip on your thoughts, functions, and life right now, but help is available, and you can begin a heroin recovery today. The alternative can be deadly.
Learn More at Midwest Recovery
Learn how the heroin rehab program at Midwest Recovery can be the starting point for the reshaping of the rest of your life and recovering from heroin addiction. Contact us using our secure online form or call us confidentially at 833.627.0039 today.