A Psychoactive Drug
How Heroin is Ingested:
Fact: Additives in heroin do not dissolve into the bloodstream. A blood clot can form and travel to the lungs, liver, heart or brain, which is instantly fatal.
Medicinal Use of Heroin:
Heroin is legally used to help people who suffer or have suffered from:
- severe physical trauma or injury
- post surgical pain
- a heart attack
- chronic pains of end stage cancer
How Heroin Alters Consciousness:
- When injected, it reaches the brain in 15-30 seconds
- When smoked, it reaches the brain in about 7 seconds
Short Term Effects of Heroin
Myth: Heroin is less dangerous when smoked or snorted.
Long Term Effects of Heroin:
Over time, the chemical imbalance in the brain affects your moods & emotions: a depletion in the production of brain endorphin levels gives heroin users a feeling of depression due to the body ceasing to produce its own naturally occurring endorphins.
Chronic users may develop collapsed veins, infection of the heart lining and valves, and liver disease. As higher doses are used over time, physical dependence and addiction develop. Withdrawal, which in regular abusers may occur as early as a few hours after the last administration, produces drug craving, restlessness, muscle and bone pain, insomnia, diarrhea and vomiting, cold flashes with goose bumps and kicking movements.
The sensations that heroin produces can last anywhere from a few minutes to just under an hour depending on one's personal tolerance to the drug, the method of ingestion, the amount used, and its purity. If a heroin addict stops ingesting it, then major withdrawal symptoms will peak between 48 and 72 hours after the last dose and subside after about a week. However, sudden withdrawal by heavily dependent users in poor health can be fatal.