What are Common Signs of Heroin Use?

What are Common Signs of Heroin Use?

The heroin epidemic in the United States has been escalating in recent years. There was a long period when drug addiction was thought to only affect those in lower class areas. However, the recent heroin problem has silently crept its way into the middle and upper classes. More and more everyday, everyone from housewives, to teenagers and even older generations are becoming addicted to heroin. The path to heroin addiction is different for everyone, so it’s important to understand what the signs of heroin use are. Recognizing them may give you the tools you need to help a loved one before it’s too late.

Becoming Addicted to Heroin from Pain Medications

The United States prescribes millions of narcotic pain medications each year. This epidemic really became an issue when OxyContin hit the market. This medication was marketed in the early 2000s as the perfect pain medication, but it didn’t take long for people to see that it was highly addictive. Along with OxyContin, medical professionals began to prescribe many other opiate-based medications. Some of the most prescribed narcotic pain medications include:

  • Vicodin
  • Percocet
  • Lortab
  • Hydrocodone

The signs of heroin use often start after the abuse of prescription pain medications. Generally, a person becomes dependent to pain medications, and eventually need something stronger in order to get the feeling that they’re looking for. Those who can no longer obtain prescriptions often turn to heroin as an alternative as well.

Signs of Heroin Use in Teens

In the Northeast United States, the heroin problem is much worse than in other parts of the country. One noticeable trend in recent years is that fewer people are entering treatment for alcohol and prescription drug addiction. Instead, more are entering for heroin addictions. What we can take from statistics like this is that more people who are abusing substances are beginning to go straight to heroin, and many young people are becoming hooked on this potentially fatal drug.

Those who begin using heroin may display alarming changes in behavior. You’ll begin to notice someone who has been abusing heroin become more withdrawn from society. They may start to spend more time alone or begin hanging around a new crowd. Those who abuse heroin often lose quite a bit of weight as well because they lose their appetite, or they simply can’t hold any food down. While marks on the skin may be a sign of intravenous use of heroin, it’s important to remember that heroin can also be snorted or smoked.

Getting Help for Heroin Addiction

If you believe your child, spouse, family member, friend or coworker is struggling with a heroin addiction, there is help available. Heroin is a lethal drug that takes many lives each year, so don’t wait to find help for your loved one. Pinnacle Peak Recovery specializes in helping people who struggle with heroin addiction, and we’re here to teach them a better way of living clean and sober.

Lawmakers demand action after shocking report on heroin overdoses

Lawmakers demand action after shocking report on heroin overdoses

BRENTWOOD, N.Y. — A new report found that more people are dying in Suffolk County from heroin overdoses than any other county in New York State.

Now some lawmakers are demanding action to get help to stop the epidemic.

One solution may be found at The Pilgrim State Psychiatric Center in Brentwood. It was once the largest hospital in the world.

But now this 400 acre facility is under utilized.

State Assemblyman Andrew Raia says it is the perfect place to start combating the heroin epidemic.

“This is an emergency,” said Raia. “We need to open up those beds as quickly as possible.”

More than 300 people died in Suffolk County from heroin overdoses in a 60 month period from 2009 to 2013.

Raia says out-patient facilities are over flowing in Suffolk County.

He says inpatient treatment is more effective and the state has the space at Pilgrim State to start winning the war against heroin abuse.

“We have the resources and facilities there now” said Raia adding ” the state needs to step up.”

Suffolk County had more overdose fatalities than the the Bronx and Brooklyn combined in the time period studied in the state report.

Legislator William Spencer who is also a practicing doctor says a lot of people became addicted to heroin after becoming addicted to prescription opiates.

“When these medications were marketed in the late 90s they were introduced as alternative for pain management that was not addictive, and that was just not true,” said Spencer.

He says the prescription drug companies helped create the heroin epidemic and now they need to help in the treatment of patients and the campaign to stop the surge of heroin.

While Spencer says we’re “struggling in government,” he says the drug makers are not.

“The pharmaceutical companies have profited greatly,” he said.

Raia hopes to pass legislation in Albany by June.