Risks of Heroin Use
Heroin is one of the most addictive opioid drugs. Many people end up heroin dependent even after a single dose. That is because heroin reaches almost instantly the brain cells and affects their normal functioning. Heroin abuse can lead to an overdose or long-term health problems.
Risks and effects of heroin use
Besides its addictive properties, heroin has a lot of other related risks that makes it a very dangerous, even deadly substance. Here are the most common heroin-related risks:
- Illicit drug — heroin is an unapproved drug and many people sell it illegally. That is why, you may never know what you are really buying. It may contain different other drugs like stimulants, or even fentanyl. Fentanyl is a very powerful analgesic that is 100 times more powerful than morphine. Mixing opiates like heroin with a stimulant like cocaine is very dangerous.
- Breathing difficulties — heroin use causes respiratory depression. It is when the breathing rate becomes very slow and the lungs don’t get enough oxygen and carbon dioxide accumulates. Therefore, the user can become unconscious and choke on their own vomit, or even injure themselves. Another consequences of respiratory depression is coma and death.
- Diseases and health problems — excessive and prolonged heroin use leads to a wide range of physical, mental, and spiritual problems and disorders. Some of these are severe weight loss, sexual dysfunction, collapsing veins, bacterial infections, abscesses, heart infections, liver and kidney disease, depression, anxiety, kleptomania, trichotillomania, hoarding, excoriation, etc.
- Infections — the most common form of heroin use is injection. This way, the drug enters the central nervous system immediately and you don’t have to wait long for the needed effects. Using injections puts you at great risk of getting HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, and other infections from needle sharing of dirty needles.