Addicts and alcoholics often talk about when they feel they became either addicted to drugs or became a full-blown alcoholic. Our bodies each have a unique level of tolerance for certain substances.
How long it takes for the incomprehensible urge of an addiction to materialize can be different. However, there is one drug that seems to defy any sense of normal progression. It is heroin. Heroin addicts often reveal that they felt hooked after that first high.
So, why is heroin so dangerously addictive, even after just one dose? In addition, what should someone do if they’ve tried heroin, even just a single time? Here’s the reasoning behind why you can get addicted to heroin after one dose, plus how a Florida drug rehab can help.
Heroin Short-Term Effects
Heroin travels to the brain almost instantly. When it enters your brain, it converts to morphine. Morphine will almost immediately form a chemical bond with opioid receptors in your brain. This is what is referred to as the rush.
The intensity and speed of this rush are determined by how the heroin is taken. It’s the intensity of the high that heroin addicts chase, which is why injecting it intravenously is common.
Heroin addicts, among other types of drug users, speak of chasing this euphoric first high for the rest of their lives, but never being able to achieve. This one dangerous characteristic of heroin adds to its lethality.
Addicts will try just a little larger dose to reach a new peak, and they end up overdosing. Once you get past the initial stage of dry mouth and heavy limbs, heroin tricks your brain into a state of euphoria.
It all but deadens pain receptors, plus triggers a release of pleasure chemicals throughout your body. Your brain is telling you that you feel fantastic, but the opposite is true. Our bodies want to reject the heroin as if it was poison.
This is what triggers nauseous feelings and vomiting. As these feelings also subside, the awful stuff begins to happen. Our brain function slows, our heart rate weakens and breathing slows down.
It only takes one dose of heroin to slow things down so dramatically; you end up in a coma with permanent brain damage. These are the risks of just one dose, a one-time never do this again mistake. But, happens when this mistake leads to another, and another?
Heroin Long-Term Effects
The idea that something could create such havoc in our bodies that we end up in a coma should be something scary enough to prevent us from ever trying it. However, unfortunately it is not. There are thousands of heroin addicts fighting for their very lives.
Part of the reason is that first-time effect that creates a mental obsession to try it again. What happens next is even more disturbing. Heroin addiction almost immediately begins to destroy your brain’s white matter.
Without trying to sound too scientific, it’s responsible for regulating behavior such as decision-making and reaction to stress. In addition, heroin almost instantly begins to build a higher wall of tolerance.
It will take a larger and larger dose to chase that same euphoric high. Heroin creates a mental dependence with increased tolerance, but also produces a constantly growing physical dependence.
The withdrawal symptoms from heroin are excruciating. If the withdrawal from a single dose of heroin is bad, imagine how horrific they become with time. Many of the same short-term physical effects on your body are magnified with every single repeat use.
What is truly disturbing is that the neurological and hormonal damage of long-term heroin use are virtually impossible to reverse. So, what does someone who has tried heroin do to prevent heading down a road that could kill them? Thankfully, treatment is an answer.
How a Rehab Can Help
Rehabs are there to help all sorts of addictions. With the consequences of opioid-based addictions being so potentially serious, their importance to the recovery community in fighting heroin addiction is vital. Here’s why how a rehab can help.
- Detox – The physical and mental dangers created by heroin withdrawal can be life-threatening. As with withdrawal from other drugs, including alcohol, the first few days are critical. An excellent treatment program provides a medically supervised period of withdrawal, especially critical for heroin.
- Professional Therapy – The vast majority of substance abuse problems stem from underlying mental health issues. There comes a point where any rational understanding of why you abuse drugs or drink alcoholically becomes lost. Therapy will uncover these root causes of addiction.
- Peer Support – Beyond the support of professional recovery specialists, addicts and alcoholics from all walks of life get support from their treatment experience. They bond with others in recovery and create lifelong friendships.
- Tools of Recovery – A treatment facility will also help you develop a well-rounded tool box for recovery. There will be the support network you create in treatment, plus another one you will build afterwards. Treatment programs provide you with the tools of recovery and teach you how to use them.
We’ve explained why it is possible to become addicted to heroin after just one dose. There is an even bigger possible consequence. It only takes one dose of heroin to kill you. It is one of the most powerful and lethal of all opioid drugs. If you have yet to try heroin, don’t do it.
If you have, even just once, consider sitting down and speaking to someone about it. It’s that mental obsession to chase the heroin high, which makes it so dangerous. Weeks, even years can go by between heroin highs. However, it only takes one dose to kill you.
Whether you’ve used heroin one time, ten times or hundreds of times, ask for help. Heroin is dangerous, and the longer you go without help the more dangerous the situation becomes. Caring and compassionate recovery specialists are there to help you. Make the call today, tomorrow could be too late. Please call 833-846-5669.