Heroin Abuse

Heroin Abuse

Articles, Australia, Celebrity Rehab, Education, International, LGBTQ, Malaysia, Understanding Addiction, United Kingdom, United States

Heroin Abuse

Heroin is an opioid drug that is created from morphine. Opioids are natural substances taken from the seed pod of a variety of opium poppy plants that are grown in various areas. However, just because heroin originates from an organic source does not mean it is safe. Heroin is known by many names but some of the common ones are big H, hell dust, horse, and smack. Heroin is injected, sniffed, snorted, or smoked. Some people even mix heroin and cocaine in a practice known as speedballing.

Heroin Effects On The Body

Heroin has many effects on the body, but the most obvious is that it binds to opioid receptors at the cellular level that are located in many areas. These include many that are involved in feelings of pain and pleasure. These also control heart rate, breathing, and sleeping. This means that heroin use is very dangerous and can easily be deadly.

Even with the possibility of death at every use, many addicts partake in heroin use as often as possible. The short term effects of heroin use include a rush of pleasurable or euphoric feelings. But also include dry mouth, warm flushing of the skin, and a heavy feeling in the arms and legs. Many also experience itching, nausea, vomiting, mental cloudiness, and nodding that appears as someone falling in and out of consciousness. These effects may vary some between and among users, but the majority will experience them at some point. Additionally, long term effects of heroin use include insomnia, damaged tissue, infection of the heart lining, abscesses, mental disorders, sexual dysfunction. And so much more.

Heroin Dangers

Heroin goes beyond the problems mentioned as it often contains additives like sugar, powdered milk, and starch that can clog blood vessels that lead to liver, lung,  brain, and kidney problems that are long lasting. This means heroin is dangerous well beyond the actual drug as the body of the user is damaged by other ingredients. Many heroin users also share needles or other equipment that can help spread diseases. Diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis C (HCV), and several other blood or fluid borne diseases that can create problems for years to come.

Heroin Overdose

Heroin abuse also comes with a chance of overdose from the very first use. As heroin causes breathing to slow the amount of oxygen to the brain is decreased. This is known as hypoxia and can cause brain damage or death. Brain damage could lead to coma, being paralyzed, or other long time or permanent complications.  A treatment for heroin overdose is available in the form of Naloxone which is available as both an inject-able or a nasal spray. While Naloxone is typically available to paramedics and at hospitals. It must be used quickly to bring someone back from overdose. More and more states are making Naloxone available without a prescription, but this is not in all areas.

Heroin Addiction

If you or someone you love has a heroin addiction then now is the time to seek help. Help can come in the form of in-patient rehab or out patient counseling, but help needs to be sought as soon as possible. Getting away from a heroin addiction is difficult, but possible. Stay strong and get the help that is needed.

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Cocaine withdrawal

Cocaine Withdrawal

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Cocaine is a dangerous drug that had its purpose in the medical community for a time, but is now predominantly used to get high. There are short and long term effects of cocaine and neither are positive. In fact, cocaine is a drug that requires more and more to maintain the same high for an individual. Cocaine can be deadly from the first use as it is often mixed with other drugs or substances to bulk up the actual drug. This makes coke a seriously harmful drug to both use and withdraw from for the addict. Even if you have only used once you may experience withdrawal symptoms if you are trying not to use again. Read on to learn more about the cocaine withdrawal symptoms and other long term effects that come with extended use.

If you are reading to find out what withdrawal from cocaine is going to be like for yourself or someone you care about then know that everyone’s experience is different and it will be tough. But in the long run it is worth it to get back to a healthy life that can be truly enjoyed. Cocaine withdrawal occurs when someone who has used a great deal of cocaine decides to cut down or stop completely. Withdrawal symptoms can begin before all of the drug is out of the body. The amount of cocaine that is considered ‘a great deal’ may vary from person to person.

Cocaine produces a false sense of euphoria by causing the brain to release dopamine. When the binge or use lessens or stops the crash follows almost immediately. A strong craving will start during this initial crash and other symptoms can include lack of feeling any pleasure, irritability, anxiety, fatigue, sleepiness, and extreme agitation.

Cocaine can produce physical symptoms such as nausea or shaking but it is not as common as with withdrawal from other drugs. Specific to withdrawal a person may become depressed and even suicidal for months following the last use of cocaine. They may also have increased appetite and a slowing of activity. Someone may be generally uncomfortable and have vivid and scary dreams. The powerful, intense cravings may lead to further use. But with more use the high becomes less pleasant and more likely to bring about fear and suspicion.

Symptoms of withdrawal will disappear over time, but severe symptoms may require in-patient treatment to be safe and in a medical environment as a precaution. This allows for counseling and medication if needed through the withdrawal period. After withdrawal the person may need some monitoring through blood tests, chest x-rays, ECG’s, and toxicology for screening purposes. Additionally, support groups are good resources.

Cocaine addiction is very difficult to treat and relapse is highly likely. However, treatment should start with the least restrictive option and increase if relapse does occur. Some medications may help deal with the depression and paranoia, but no medication currently exists to help with the actual withdrawal symptoms. If you or someone you know is seeking help then do not wait any longer. Cocaine use can be deadly, the next hit could be your last. You can get over your addiction if you are willing to try.

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cocaine use

What is Cocaine

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Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant drug that is made from the leaves of the coca plant that is native to South America. It is an illegal drug though at one time it was used for valid medical purposes. As a common street drug cocaine is a fine, crystal, white powder. Dealers often mix it with things like talcum powder, cornstarch, or even flour to bulk up the drug and turn more of a profit. Additionally, cocaine is sometimes mixed with other drugs like amphetamines.

Cocaine is known by many names. A few of the most common are crack, rock, snow, coke, and blow. Cocaine is typically snorted as powder through the nose or rubbed on the gums. However, some people dissolve it into water and inject it or shoot up. This gets the coke into the bloodstream and a high is almost immediate. The mixing of cocaine and heroin to inject is known as a Speedball. Another method of using cocaine is to smoke it. Cocaine that has been processed to make rock crystal is heated and the vapors inhaled. The crackling sound of the heated rocks is why this is known as crack. Cocaine is the type of drug that is often taken in binges with increasing doses needed to maintain the same or a better high. The binges can easily lead to overdose, especially when the cocaine is mixed with another drug.

Cocaine is often a drug of choice because it effects the chemistry of the brain by increasing dopamine which makes the body believe it is experiencing pleasure and movement. Typically, dopamine is released when the body senses a potential reward, like good food or someone you love. The dopamine is released then recycled to shut off the signal. With cocaine use the recycling is stopped and the flood of dopamine creates a high.

There are health effects from cocaine use that include extreme happiness, energy, mental alertness, irritability, paranoia, and hypersensitivity. This means that some people may experience extreme focus to a task, while others may have completely unpredictable behavior. The same person may react differently with each use. Additional signs of cocaine use are constricted blood vessels, nausea, dilated pupils, raised blood pressure and body temperature, rapid heartbeat, tremors, and restlessness. When using cocaine the high is almost immediate and lasts from a few minutes to an hour with a single use. Method of use does effect the high as injecting coke will cause a faster high that is shorter lived, but snorting may last longer and take longer to kick in with each use.

Long term or continual use of cocaine can vary based on how the cocaine is used. Snorting can lead to a loss of sense of smell, runny nose, problems with swallowing and nosebleeds. Shooting up puts the user at higher risk for HIV and Hep C due to shared needles, though all users are at risk of sexually transmitted disease as cocaine use impairs judgment in selecting partners. Consuming cocaine by mouth can cause bowel decay and decrease blood flow. Since cocaine decreases appetite, users may become malnourished and create movement disorders such as Parkinson’s. No matter how cocaine is used it can create a number of problems. If you or someone you know is using, seek help immediately.

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Heroin Addiction Rehabilitation and Recovery

Heroin Rehabilitation and Recovery

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Heroin seems to be the addictive plague of our time. Around the world, use of heroin has steadily grown and the devastating consequences of addiction and overdose are seen every place heroin is found. In fact, 1 in 3 overdoses in Europe have been in the U.K. and the majority of these overdoses have been from heroin and other opioids. The use and abuse of heroin is at epidemic proportions.

Heroin Addiction

Since heroin is so highly addictive there really is no such thing as a “casual user”. There emphatically is no safe way to use heroin and addiction will inevitably take over anyone who uses heroin more than once. As users “come down” from the high of heroin they often experience nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, and itching. In fact, general itching is sign of opiate and opioid use in general. This is the set of symptoms often referred to as being “dope sick”. After a period of time, a secondary set of symptoms will emerge. These include extreme drowsiness in which the user/addict will need to sleep for hours at a time. They will also feel a foggy mental state, unable to focus. Users will begin to ‘nod off,” falling asleep and waking up over a long period of time.

Heroin Withdrawal

Severe heroin withdrawal symptoms include muscle pains, inability to sleep, rapid heart rate and hypertension, depression, and a severe craving for the drug. Heroin addicts will crave the drug so badly that they will be driven to obtain it. In this way the cycle of addiction become firmly established and can be difficult to interrupt. To complicate this further, the more heroin users go through this painful cycle of withdrawal and getting high, the more they crave the drug. And the more of the drug they tend to use. Heroin users will use more and more of the drug to obtain the same effects. This will further increase the risk of overdose.

Heroin Rehabilitation

Heroin addiction requires treatment. Most heroin addicts will likely require in-patient treatment. The withdrawal form heroin is so difficult and pernicious that any attempt to stop using the drug seems to send the addict straight back to using. Dara offers the full range of professional treatment for heroin addiction. From medical detox to the a treatment program which heals the addictive patterns and underlying psychological problem which lead to and contribute to heroin addiction, Dara offers everything that current science can provide.

Heroin Recovery

One of the more insidious aspects of the current heroin addiction problem is the fact that so many users began by using prescription opioid pain medications. Opioids are highly addictive in the same way as heroin. Once a person is addicted, heroin can become an easy and cheap alternative to prescription medication. This too can be addressed in the recovery programs at DARA. The addiction treatment professionals at DARA have a complete understanding of the complexity of the current opioid/heroin problem. The recovery programs at Dara are made to fit this complex set of medical and psychological needs.

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LGBTQ Socialization, Marketing, and Addiction

LGBTQ Socialization, Marketing, and Addiction

Articles, Australia, Celebrity Rehab, International, LGBTQ, Malaysia, Understanding Addiction, United Kingdom, United States

LGBTQ Socialization, Marketing, and Addiction. Addiction can affect anyone at any time. Addiction does not discriminate based on gender, sexuality, race, or religion. However, the marketing of items that can easily lead to addiction is very much focused on specific populations. The first thing that may come to mind is whether or not this is legal, but as long as the population being targeted is of consenting age then products can be sold in the manner a company chooses.


The most obvious way in which products are marketed are through commercials and ads online or in magazines. One of the most prominent is that of tobacco. It seems that when someone is seen smoking in an ad they are at a party or bar or in some other way having fun with friends. Companies want to make tobacco use look fun or cool, the thing to do to fit into the world you want to be part of in life. Additionally, once someone tries something like tobacco, the substances in the actual tobacco make it highly addictive. Ask any smoker and they will tell you that smoking relieves stress and is simply a part of their every day like. Much like breathing, smoking or using smokeless tobacco becomes a part of life.


The same is true of alcohol. Alcohol ads always have attractive people having fun, meeting others, and smiling in every photo or advertisement. Drinking may be a way to unwind after a long day, but it too can quickly lead to problematic behavior. Alcohol is shown being served in every setting from yachts to backyard barbecues and inside dive bars. Alcohol is available in gas stations, big box stores, and grocery chains. Next to tobacco it is one of the easiest items to find that can lead to addiction.

While advertising may not apply to illegal drugs the culture remains the same. Anyone trying to sell drugs will offer the potential user a picture of happiness, serenity, and a pleasant experience. For some this may initially be true, but addiction can become an issue after the first time.

LGBTQ Advertising Tricks

This may seem like a trick of advertisers and users but this can be applied to a specific subculture, that of LGBTQ. Many ads are targeted at this culture and part of the population, promising that drinking, smoking, and much more will lead to a happy time in life. This enhances the draw to bars and social gatherings in which drug and alcohol use is acceptable and often expected. Many believe this allows those who are LGBTQ to relax and allow themselves to be who they are without judgment. Unfortunately, this form of relaxation can lead to addiction. If you or someone you know has been taken in by addiction then finding the right way to get treatment may take some research. This is especially true of those who consider themselves LGBTQ.

There are specific rehabs available for LGBTQ individuals that can meet the needs specific to this population. Know that addiction is not your fault, but moving beyond addiction is your choice.

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