fbpx
NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center

Heroin Abuse: Why Pain and Addiction Coexist

Heroin is a type of opioid drug derived from poppy plants. As an illegal, recreational drug, it can be sniffed, snorted or smoked in its powder form. This substance binds with opioid receptors in the brain that affect feelings of pain and pleasure.

Many prescription opioid drugs like OxyContin and Vicodin, which are used for treating chronic pain and serious conditions like cancer, have similar effects to heroin, according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Out of all chronic pain patients misusing their opioid medication, at least four to six percent eventually switch to heroin and develop heroin abuse.

 

Why Opioid Users Become Heroin Users

Chronic pain patients are often prescribed with opioids to manage their pain. As their body finds relief and copes with the drug's help, they might also become tolerant of the dosage they have been originally prescribed since opioids can be highly addictive, even for short-term use.

Specialists explain that opioids trigger an endorphin release that masks how the brain reads pain. It temporarily creates this good feeling. In some cases, patients describe that opioids feel like a warm blanket that shields them from the stress and anxiety of their chronic and painful conditions.

Addiction starts when the patient develops a need for more pain medication to achieve a sense of wellness, forming drug dependence. As soon as the opioid's dose wears off, then the patient might want to regain those good feelings by taking more opioid drugs. But since these are prescribed and monitored, other patients turn to heroin.

National Institute on Drug Abuse reporting that more than 2 million Americans abuse opioids and that more than 90 Americans die by opioid overdose every day, on average.

 

drug treatment center los angeles

Risk Factors for Heroin Abuse

Heroin abuse may completely alter the structure and physiology of the patient's brain, which can bring about imbalances in the hormones. This, in turn, affects a patient's ability to process, decide, and even respond to stressful situations. It may also change the patient's behavior and demeanor.

 

Heroin may also result in the following complications: 

  • Infection of the heart valves and lining 
  • Skin diseases
  • Collapsed vein
  • Lung diseases
  • Increased risks for contracting Hepatitis, HIV/AIDS
  • Miscarriage in women

The sooner a patient withdraws from heroin abuse, the better the chances of successful recovery. Therefore, our drug treatment center in Los Angeles strongly advise that if a patient is showing signs of dependency, an intervention to facilitate rehabilitation must be made right away.

 

Where to seek treatment and support for heroin withdrawal?

Drug withdrawal, including heroin or opiods, can be a scary and intimidating endeavor, with all the life-threatening symptoms that come with it. So, it’s vital to start the detoxification and withdrawal process in a safe and secure environment, such as a drug treatment center.

A drug detoxification or treatment center can help you overcome heroin addiction by creating an individualized treatment plan to address your specific needs. They will also devise a plan of care during your detox process to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms. This may include the following:

  • Proper withdrawal management techniques
  • Counselling
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Psychiatric treatment
  • Psychoeducation
  • Aftercare plan

Withdrawal management programs do not end when your symptoms subside. It includes an aftercare treatment plan to give patients the right tools to manage their cravings and avoid relapse. It may also involve educating your loved ones so they can support you towards a full recovery.

 

drug treatment center los angeles

Where to find the best recovery centers in Los Angeles?

If you are suffering from any addiction, our addiction and recovery specialists at NorthStar can help you. 

At NorthStar, we provide exceptional patient care and evidence-based treatment programs to ensure a safe, effective, and long-lasting recovery for our patients. Our goal is to meet the needs of each individual, as we know that every patient has unique issues. 

We believe that treatment has to be adjusted to the patient’s particular situation. We offer multiple treatment options to help patients succeed at every stage of the recovery process.  Our trained doctors and licensed health professionals will guide you every step of the way using advanced therapeutic modalities. 

Our rehab center in San Fernando Valley treats all kinds of substance abuse, including the following:

Recovery is just a phone call away! Contact Us now to get in touch with our trusted clinical staff and start your journey towards a healthy recovery! 

If you greatly value privacy and comfort as you recover from substance abuse addiction, then our California luxury rehab at NorthStar Detox and Rehab Center is for you. 

 

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

 

Frequent and chronic use of dangerous drugs (e.g., cocaine, heroin) typically leads to a much more severe disorder—drug addiction. Addiction or substance use disorder is a physical and psychological condition characterized by one’s inability to control the use of drugs, no matter the consequences.

As a result of addiction and long-term use, the body gradually develops a physical dependence on the harmful drug. So when you abruptly stop consuming addictive drugs, your body can experience several adverse effects from drug withdrawal.

Learn more about drug withdrawal, its signs and symptoms, and how drug rehab in San Fernando Valley can help you go through it safely. 

What is drug withdrawal?

Drug withdrawal refers to the process of discontinuing or reducing the intake of substance use. Once you cut back on drugs, your body will start to experience a variety of reactions called drug withdrawal symptoms.

Withdrawal symptoms happen due to the body’s acquired dependence on the specific drug. Since the body has been taught to function under the heavy influence of the illegal substance, over time, it will need the drug’s presence to exist in a stable condition. This stability becomes compromised when you suddenly take away the body’s drug of choice.

Withdrawal symptoms vary from person to person. Some may be life-threatening, while others may only experience mild to moderate symptoms. Additionally, drug withdrawal varies in severity and duration depending on a lot of factors, such as:

  • The type of drug used
  • The length of substance abuse
  • The drug’s potency and dosage
  • The current state of the patient’s health
  • Whether the patient undergoes self-detox or medically-assisted detox.

Drug withdrawal and detoxification play an important role in your journey towards getting clean and enjoying a healthy life. Fortunately, you don’t have to go through with it alone. You can get the medical and psychological support you need from the drug treatment center in Los Angeles.

What are the common signs and symptoms of drug withdrawal?

Substance abuse not only affects the physical body; it also affects one’s mental, cognitive, behavioral, and social well-being. The same goes for withdrawal. The body’s reaction to quitting these harmful drugs varies and may be categorized into different groups. Some examples of the most common symptoms of drug withdrawal include:

Physical

Physical symptoms are the actual manifestation of drug withdrawal, which can be seen by the naked eye or felt by the patient. Some examples of withdrawal symptoms that are consistent with almost all kinds of drug substances include:

  • Fatigue and lethargy
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Sweating, shakiness, and body tremors
  • Clammy skin
  • Tingling feeling on the skin
  • Muscle pain, cramps, and tension
  • Runny nose
  • Congestion
  • Increased appetite
  • Hot and cold flushes
  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure
  • Seizures for severe cases

Psychological and behavioral

Psychological symptoms refer to the effect of drug withdrawal on the patient’s mental well-being. It may also affect the way the patient thinks, behaves, and interacts with their surroundings during drug withdrawal. Some examples include:

  • Agitation and irritability
  • Sleeping problems or insomnia
  • Sudden mood changes
  • Nervousness
  • Restlessness
  • Hallucinations or sensory experiences that are only created by the mind. This includes seeing or hearing something that isn’t there.
  • Paranoia and delirium

The patient may also develop mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression during drug withdrawal. Unfortunately, this only worsens the psychological symptoms and makes withdrawal more difficult.

Cognitive

Cognitive symptoms are the effects of drug withdrawal on the patient’s brain and cognitive function. One of its most common cognitive effects is memory and concentration problems, which usually lead to confusion and disorientation. 

Moreover, drug abuse also impairs several cognitive abilities, so there’s no telling when normal brain function will return after withdrawal.

Where to seek treatment and support for drug withdrawal?

Drug withdrawal can be a scary and intimidating endeavor, with all the life-threatening symptoms that come with it. So, it’s vital to start the detoxification and withdrawal process in a safe and secure environment, such as a drug treatment center.

A drug detox or treatment center can help you overcome drug addiction by creating an individualized treatment plan to address your specific needs. They will also devise a plan of care during your detoxification process to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms. This may include the following:

  • Proper withdrawal management techniques
  • Counselling
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Psychiatric treatment
  • Psychoeducation
  • Aftercare plan

Withdrawal management programs do not end when your symptoms subside. It includes an aftercare treatment plan to give patients the right tools to manage their cravings and avoid relapse. It may also involve educating your loved ones so they can support you towards a full recovery.

Get the Support You Need at One of the Best Recovery Centers in Los Angeles County 

At NorthStar, we provide exceptional patient care and evidence-based treatment programs to ensure a safe, effective, and long-lasting recovery for our patients. Our trained doctors and licensed health professionals will guide you every step of the way using advanced therapeutic modalities. 

Our Tarzana recovery center treats all kinds of substance abuse, including the following:

Recovery is just a phone call away! Contact Us now to get in touch with our trusted clinical staff and start your journey towards a healthy recovery! 

alcohol addiction treatment tarzana

 

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Various experts have been figuring out the very nature of drug addiction - a type of substance abuse disorder. Debates continue about whether, or not this disease can be prevented.

For some, the tendency to abuse drugs may be ingrained in their system. Genetics, or a family history of drug addiction puts many people at a greater risk. For others, however, drug addiction might be a form of weakness following a person's decision to experiment with illegal substances. Thus, various drug prevention and early intervention programs are in place to help curtail this problem. 

 

Common Causes of Drug Addiction

To help prevent drug addiction is to first understand why people are drawn to drugs in the first place. The reasons are different for each individual. Some people take drugs because it makes them feel good as some substances can have a euphoric effect. Others keep using drugs because it relieves them from stress, anxiety or depression. Also, some use drugs because it improves their performance, or enhances their abilities. 

According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, the most common causes of drug addiction are: 

  • Biology or genetics

It is in a person's DNA and it also covers the person's state of mental health. According to the American Addiction Centers, 40-60% of drug addicts are at risk because of this factor. 

  • Social Environment

This pertains to the influences around the person (peer pressure), the person's economic status and general quality of life, including the experienced stress and trauma. 

  • Development

This is when using the drugs interacts with a person's critical development stages, thus drug addiction usually starts during the teenage years. 

However, drug addiction may also happen to those prescribed with painkillers following an injury, or surgery. With no intention to experiment, some, unfortunately, get hooked on prescription medications.

 

Early Intervention to Prevent Drug Addiction

Experts believe that the challenges to stop the addiction are greater when experimenting teenagers get hooked on drugs. Thus, family members have a crucial role in preventing addictive disorders.

Studies have also indicated that when a person has a solid foundation, reared with love and understanding by the parents, and has close family ties, then he is less likely to be pushed into drug addiction. If a person also has a role model to look up to from whom he can develop good and healthy habits, he'll also be less likely turn to drugs to deal with stress.

 

Recognizing Drug Addiction

Young people need to be guided on how to deal with the pressures of life early on. Otherwise, their inability to cope would make them weak against the temptation of drugs. Here are some ways to recognize if someone is using drugs:

  • Behavioral changes

Drug addiction can drastically change a person's behavior and the most glaring sign is exaggerated effort to hide, or be holed up in his room. 

  • Physical changes

Substance abuse can trigger drastic weight changes (gain or loss), fatigue, lack of energy, and frequent red eyes.

  • Problems with work or school

A sudden drop in the grades, or frequent absences from work might be a red flag.

  • Problems with money

A sudden need for money, or unexplained loss of items at home could be indicative of someone trying to sustain their drug use. 

Meth Addiction Treatment Center LA California

Seeking help - Residential Treatment Center Los Angeles

Do you know someone who may be suffering from addiction and needs inside help? NorthStar Detox and Rehab is for those who want a unique, comprehensive, effective treatment option for substance abuse disorders. It is for the person seeking long-term sobriety with the assistance of professionals who know what works. If you want to be sober and successful, then Northstar is for you.

If you would like more information about our drug addiction treatment in Tarzana, please don’t hesitate to Contact Us.

  

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

The product with the street name “gray death” or “grey” death is an illicit opioid combination of potent drugs that have led to several fatal overdoses in the United States.

It is a synthetic, designer drug said to be more dangerous than heroin. The ingredients can vary from one batch to another, which make it even more unpredictable and dangerous.  A “typical” batch can contain heroin, fentanyl, carfentanil, U-47700 (pink) and include other unidentified drugs.

Why Gray Death is dangerous

Gray death is highly addictive. It appears in the form of a chalky-like substance in loose powder or “chunk” form.  It can be consumed by injection, smoking, snorting, or oral ingestion.

The harmful substances in gray death can make it so toxic,  according to some reports, that they warn that the mere touching or inhaling of the drug can be lethal.

Gray death is sought out for its ability to create intense euphoria. Because of the addictive nature of gray death, those using it are very likely to experience craving and withdrawal if they taper and/or discontinue use.

Commonly reported effects, in addition to euphoria include:
  • shallow breathing,
  • dizziness,
  • constricted pupils,
  • loss of consciousness,
  • lethargy,
  • nausea/vomiting,
  • pinpoint pupils,
  • cold/clammy skin,
  • loss of consciousness,
  • heart failure,
  • overdose/fatal overdose.

According to research reports, initial treatment often includes Narcan, usually administered in multiple doses. Research data also indicate that if there are non-opioid drugs in the grey death “mixture,” Narcan (naloxone) will be of limited effect.

Of course, ultimately a combination of various psychological, psychosocial, and biologic treatment interventions are necessary in order to effectively address gray death addiction.

Peter Getoff, MA, LCSW

Northstar Clinical Director

 

NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center - Further Information

If you are struggling with a substance abuse disorder, then we can help. Our drug rehabilitation center in Los Angeles is for those who want a unique, comprehensive, effective treatment option for substance abuse disorders. It is for the person seeking long-term sobriety with the assistance of professionals who know what works. If you want to be sober and successful, then Northstar is for you.

If you would like more information about our addiction treatment services, please don't hesitate to Contact Us.

 

 

 

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

“It takes a village.” Since a book with this phrase was published several years ago it has become a popular phrase.  

One of the common interpretations of the phrase is that for most human beings, if not all of us, it ideally takes many people who care about us and our well-being to take a collective hand in supporting and guiding us through life’s trials and tribulations.

At Northstar, it is our passionate and fervent belief that program patients can reap invaluable benefits from the involvement of family and friends in their treatment program.

In our progressive and changing society, we embrace an inclusive definition of family. Some patients may not have the good fortune of having family members who are willing and able to participate in family therapy and therapeutic milieu visits. And that is ok. At our residential addiction treatment in Tarzana, we work with the patient to identify significant friends in their life who are available to attend sessions and provide the love and caring essential for successful rehabilitation.

The importance of family support during addiction recovery

Once the patient is discharged from Northstar and if indicated complete a sober living program, they are on their own in maintaining their sobriety. Yes, they will have psychotherapy, Recovery groups, and fellowship with others in Recovery. And they will need  relationships with friends and family who have learned enough about recovery theory and practice to reinforce the patient’s substance-free lifestyle.

The staff at Northstar understand and appreciate that sometimes the patients’ friends and family members initially are reluctant to participate in family and visitation activities. There can be shame, anger, confusion, and embarrassment in regards to the patient’s addiction. It is normal and natural to have these thoughts and feelings.

At Northstar we are sensitive and understanding about these reactions and we are skillful in our ability to foster new heart-felt understanding and emotional connection between the patient and family members/friends. The patient is asked to dedicate themselves to a healthy transformation. Not only do they benefit from our treatment program but there are critical benefits for their loved ones too.

Learn more about NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center -  Residential Treatment Center in Los Angeles

Here at NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center, we treat various forms of addictions, including alcohol addiction, drug addiction, together with opioid, cocaine, meth addiction, and more.

If you would like more information about our addiction treatment options, do not hesitate to contact us!

 

 

 

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center
Life Changes for The Better at NorthStar!

NorthStar Detox & Rehab Center / Design by RedCastleServices.com