What is Heroin?
Heroin is a dangerous and addictive opiate drug.
And while heroin once had medical uses, it is seldom used in modern medical settings due to its dangers.
Can you get addicted to heroin on your first try? The answer is yes.
Heroin can destroy one's physical and mental health, even after a single-use.
Can You Get Addicted to Heroin on Your First Try?
There are many stereotypes about substance addiction.
Typically, people think heroin users have developed this habit because of a decades-long “party” lifestyle.
These individuals are often depicted as reckless with their health or tragically seeking addiction as part of a fast-living culture. Those who believe these assumptions tend to think “it cannot happen to them” or that addiction cannot result from experimentation.
However, these beliefs do not reflect the reality of addiction. For many individuals struggling with addiction, several factors ultimately lead to addiction -- many of which exist before their first “hit.”
These factors can include mental health issues, physical health issues, and other addictions. Research shows that roughly 80% of those who use heroin first misused prescription opioids.
The addiction to opioids is already present for these individuals, with heroin serving as a replacement drug. Other factors that can influence addiction's speed and severity include the potency of the drug, the amount used, metabolism and body mass, age, and one's overall health.
So, can you get addicted to heroin on the first try? The answer is yes.
Effects and Abuse of Heroin
Today heroin is most commonly a “street drug,” known for its ability to create euphoric sensations and dull physical and emotional pain.
Heroin binds to receptors in the brain, which trigger reward feelings – the same receptors stimulated when we eat, exercise, and have fun. However, while the term "street drug" may conjure images of hard-living celebrities, gangs, and dangerous neighborhoods, it is becoming increasingly common in all society segments.
Heroin is as likely to be purchased from someone in your community or school than on any street. Although heroin is a toxic substance to the body, this effect on the brain tricks the body into craving more of the drug and releasing euphoric sensations when consumed.
Soon the perceived positive impact of heroin fades, resulting in a painful crash and a need for more extensive amounts of the drug to feel the same effects. This how addiction starts.
Mental Illness and Heroin Addiction
One of the reasons professional treatment is essential for those struggling with heroin use is that it is not just a physical addiction but also a mental addiction.
Mental health issues play a central role in triggering heroin use and can perpetuate heroin addiction without counseling and support.
Furthermore, because heroin influences brain chemistry, creating a false sense of happiness. It can also trigger a dangerous psychological crash.
Research shows that heroin use can trigger depressive episodes and even suicide in those with no prior history of mental health issues.
It is a common misconception that those with enough willpower can quit using drugs whenever they want.
As a result, many individuals – especially those who are ashamed to discuss their addiction – will try to quit “cold turkey” without any support. It is not true that recovery is a matter of willpower. It is also dangerous to try to quit most drugs, including heroin, without professional help.
Like heroin, substances alter the brain and body's chemistry, changing the user’s perception of reality -- triggering paranoia, depression, insomnia, and other mental health issues. Someone coping with withdrawal effects is likely unable to detox alone effectively and could be in an impaired, possibly suicidal, mental state.
Additionally, in extreme cases, heroin withdrawal can result in heart attacks, seizures, strokes, and other medical emergencies that can be fatal if faced alone. Medical detoxification is crucial because it helps to purge the addictive substance from the body, allowing for recovery occur with a clearer mind and less physical pain.
Medications, such as antidepressants and anticonvulsants, can also be administered under physicians' supervision, helping ease the transition into recovery and setting you up for a successful future.
Do you want treatment but are worried about how you can pay for it?
We have a team of financial professionals who provide free insurance verification. We will work with you to determine how to move forward with the treatment that works for you and your financial situation.
How to Get Help
At BriteLife Recovery, located in beautiful Hilton Head, SC, you will be welcomed by our team of professionals dedicated to helping you recover and heal from your addiction.
BriteLife Recovery is a place of peace, a place of support, and a place of recovery.
You will receive supervised drug detoxification, medication therapy, residential, outpatient, and partial hospitalization programs, progressive therapies, peer support, and one-on-one counseling for your addiction in our care.
Call BriteLife Recovery today to schedule your consultation.
Let BriteLife Recovery light your way to recovery.