What Are Common Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms?

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Once a prescription medication, heroin is now exclusively an illegal controlled substance due to its addictive nature. For those suffering from an heroin addiction, knowing the signs of abuse and common heroin withdrawal symptoms can be essential to understanding your path to recovery.

At Coachella Valley Recovery Center, we are aware and well equipped to handle the challenges and long-term side effects of heroin withdrawal. We provide our clients with the best opportunities for success through our substance use programs, which can act in conjunction with multiple mental health treatments at our location. In addition, we offer comprehensive treatment services in South California that seamlessly transition clients from start to finish through our programs.

Contact us today to see how our premier drug rehab near Palm Springs can help you overcome your addiction issues.


How Addictive is Heroin?

Heroin is a highly addictive substance that can not only impair someone’s present but have a negative impact on their future physical and mental health. Heroin is a drug with devastating symptoms and complex neurophysical consequences on habitual users. 

When an individual uses heroin, they may feel drowsy, depressed, and lethargic. On the other hand, it can create a calming, pain-free feeling that encourages users to get high again. Common adverse side effects include nausea and dry mouth, which often don’t outweigh the perceived “positives” of the drug. However, the real impact of heroin use isn’t immediately evident.

The impact of heroin on the brain over time can be extreme. When an individual uses it, it indicates positive feelings in the reward center to release additional dopamine, but because the transmitters are slowed-down, the dopamine takes longer to process. This creates a cycle of “use, release, happy” that can be difficult for individuals to break away from. In addition, individuals who regularly use often develop a tolerance to the drug. Individuals must use more of the drug when tolerance occurs to get the “release, happy” portion of the cycle. The increased amount can cause more heavily negative symptoms and, as an opioid, overdose.


Does Heroin Require Detox?

The short-acting opioid narcotic heroin requires detox as clients often experience many physical and psychological symptoms following cessation of use. Individuals using heroin typically experience the onset of symptoms within 8-24 hours after their last use and experience a peak in those symptoms between 24-48 hours. The physical symptoms of heroin use can last for 4-10 days; however, the psychological symptoms can last for a month or longer, depending on the treatment and progress. 

Additionally, following detox from heroin, many individuals may experience long-term side effects of use. This can include insomnia, collapsed veins, damaged nose tissue, heart lining infections, abscesses, constipation, liver and kidney disease, lung complications, long-term mental disorders like depression and antisocial personality disorder, sexual dysfunction, and irregular menstrual cycles. Individuals are also at a greater risk for developing HIV and Hepatitis from needle sharing while high. 


What Are Common Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms?

Individuals experiencing heroin withdrawal often have a combination of physical and psychological symptoms that may last for a few days or even longer if permanent damage occurs. 

Typical heroin withdrawal symptoms include restlessness, sleep problems, muscle and bone pain, cold flashes, uncontrollable twitching (“kicking the habit”), and cravings. While many of these symptoms resolve in about a week, some can be long-lasting. 

Additionally, research has shown that individuals who use heroin may have some loss of the brain’s white matter. This means that an individual can experience decision-making and behavior control issues in the long term, even when no longer used. 


How to Find a Heroin Detox Program in Southern California

Coachella Valley Recovery Center is a comprehensive drug detox center near Palm Springs that addresses clients’ individual needs and supports the overall progress of a sustainable drug-free lifestyle with its multiple pathways to success. 

Our modern Palm Springs residential inpatient rehab center uses a combination of traditional and unique therapies to create an environment dedicated to safe recovery and the rebuilding of family units. We know the path to healing may not be linear. Still, our detoxification and inpatient treatment programs can support clients from their last use through all the ups and downs of recovery to our outpatient monitoring treatments.

Contact a treatment coordinator today to learn more about the benefits of heroin detox at Coachella Valley Recovery Center.

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