Can a heroin addict recover?

Treatment of heroin addiction usually includes therapy, medication, support groups and lifestyle changes. These procedures are available in both outpatient and outpatient clinics. Can a heroin addict recover?

What is heroin and how does it work?

Heroin and other opiates, such as prescription painkillers, have a very addictive quality due to the fact that when ingested, they mimic the natural processes of the brain in search of pleasure. Opioids gain access and alter the same elements that are involved in the production of pleasure and pain relief, i.e. the Brain Pleasure Center and opioid receptors, dopamine and endorphins. This very satisfying process also affects the cognitive process of the individual – how we think and feel pain and pleasure, adding a complex layer to the risk of addiction.

Rehab and detox

Detox is the first step towards overcoming heroin. Detoxification with a team of professionals trained to supervise and monitor you throughout the entire heroin detoxification process is strongly recommended. Withdrawing heroin is often painful and may take weeks for some, but doctors may prescribe medications that can minimize discomfort and help the body slowly adapt.

Therapy is also an important aspect in the fight against the basic behaviors that led to the use of heroin by a person. Therapy can also counteract comorbid disorders such as depression, also known as dual diagnosis.

Can a heroin addict recover?

Someone approaching treatment for heroin addiction

When someone struggles with heroin addiction, those around them may not be sure how to handle it. Heroin addiction can cause many disturbing symptoms, and there are chances that a person wants to stop but doesn’t know how to deal with addiction or continues to use to avoid withdrawal symptoms.

When you approach someone who may not yet admit that they need help, you can expect very common emotions, including: 

  • Refusal.
  • Anger.
  • Rationalization of drug use.
  • Avoidance.

Your loved one may have excuses for the negative consequences caused by drug use. For example, if they have lost their job due to a decrease in productivity, they may instead blame the toxic workplace or the bad boss for it.

When making initial treatment suggestions, try to avoid a negative dialogue that focuses on assessing them or their actions. Just try to express concern for them and ask if they are open to what you have to say. Give examples of how their use of the substance harmed them – without resorting to guilt. This can help them find their own reasons to seek treatment

Why is it worth going to a stationary treatment center?

The risk of heroin recurrence is high, especially at an early stage in the healing process. People can change their medication and compromise their health, or they may come across vendors and street marketers with heroin for sale. Temptation can occur around every corner while people are still living at home, but most of them disappear into the housing program. No drugs allowed here. It’s a clean environment, filled with people who want to improve and employees who want to help people do it



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