Heroin is known for eliciting a warm, welcoming sensation that overcomes the entire body. It’s as if all your worries and negativity wash away in the high, making you forget all the bad things you had heard about heroin.

With how mellow and relaxed you feel, you start to believe that heroin isn’t the terrifying drug that everyone makes it out to be. But while you’re caught up in the high, you forget that heroin is a devil of its own. And when you make a deal with the devil, there’s eventually a price to pay.

So, the question is, what are the consequences of using heroin? The answer is that heroin can have both short-term and long-term effects on your body. And the longer you abuse heroin, the more damage your body will experience.

Short-Term Heroin Effects on the Body

Once heroin enters your body, it doesn’t take long to feel the effects of the drug. After an injection, you’ll feel a surge of the warm feeling we described above. This is referred to as a “rush”. But that’s not all that happens once heroin is in your system.

Towards the end of the high, there’s a variety of symptoms that can happen. Some of the immediate heroin effects on the body include:

  • Rise in body temperature
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Slowed breathing
  • Irregular heart rate
  • Flush skin
  • Drifting in and out of consciousness

But what heroin does to your body in the short-term can be much worse. There’s a chance that more severe damage to your body can occur. Injecting heroin can cause your respiratory system to shut down and can lead to heart and kidney failure.

It’s important to note that as your heroin tolerance builds, the more you’ll need to get the same high you’re used to. The higher the dose, the more likely you are to experience one of the life-threatening effects listed above.

Long-Term Heroin Effects on the Body

Long-term effects of heroin are even more serious. Gray matter in your brain is responsible for controlling muscle movement, decision making, speech and behavior. Prolonged heroin use can destroy this gray matter, putting added stress on your body and making it more difficult to perform routine tasks.

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But that’s not all. The loss of gray matter can also make it more difficult to manage your behavior. And in extreme cases, your brain and body will lose its ability to respond to stress. While that might sound good at first, stress is crucial for healthy decision-making.
Other long-term heroin effects on the body include:

  • A weakened immune system
  • Tooth decay and tooth loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Sleep problems
  • Bacterial infection in major organs
  • Increased risk of pneumonia

The long-term effects of heroin can change depending on how the drug is taken. For example, people who inject heroin are known to experience collapsed veins, soft tissue infections and blood infections. But no matter how it’s taken, heroin causes your body to develop a physical dependency after only a few uses.

Building a Tolerance and Overdose Risk

As you use heroin more regularly, your tolerance goes up. As your tolerance rises, so does the amount of heroin you need to feel good. This tolerance build-up is one of the worst ways heroin affects the body (and brain) because it increases the risk for overdose.

Classified as an opiate, heroin overdose has a high chance of being lethal without immediate medical attention. Even though the United States as whole has seen a five percent decrease in overdoses, recent data shows that Arizona is one of the few states to see an increase.

Withdrawal from Heroin Abuse

The effects of heroin even continue after you stop taking it. Once your body has built a tolerance to heroin, a chemical imbalance develops in your body and brain. That imbalance becomes more uncomfortable the longer you go without heroin.

This effect is often referred to as withdrawal. Some of the common symptoms of withdrawal for heroin include:

  • strong cravings
  • trouble sleeping
  • cold flashes
  • nervousness
  • muscle and bone pain

Withdrawal symptoms become more severe the longer heroin is abused. In fact, wanting to manage withdrawal symptoms is one of the most common causes for relapse.

Find Expert Heroin Addiction Treatment in Arizona

You’ve paid the price of heroin. It’s caused fractures throughout your life, taken away your independence and damaged your career. Fountain Hills Recovery offers personalized heroin addiction treatment in Arizona that can help you heal the damage that heroin addiction has caused.

We offer a serene and private place to disconnect from your old environment, and each member of our treatment team has been handpicked for their experience and empathy. Since no two addictions to heroin are alike, part of our process includes you meeting with our team to identify your specific triggers and challenges and created a personalized treatment plan that will be most effective for you.

While you’re receiving heroin addiction treatment, we want you to feel comfortable. Our luxury heroin addiction treatment center in Arizona offers the privacy you need to begin healing. Contact our team today to learn how we can help you break free from addiction. Don’t let the price of heroin addiction rise any higher, call our admissions staff today at 888.549.4037.