How does heroin addiction occur?
Heroin is a highly addictive illegal opioid that can cause a wide range of negative effects. Along with legal issues for possession of this substance, users also face a serious chance of overdose if they do not seek help for their substance abuse.
While drug addiction can happen to anyone, there are a few occurrences that can increase the risk. Healthline explains a few of the risk factors associated with heroin addiction and abuse.
Long-term use of legal opiates for medical conditions
People with chronic pain conditions are often prescribed legal opioids as a treatment. Over time, the person builds up a tolerance to the medication, which results in the need to take more to experience the same effects. If their doctor suspends their legal prescription, they often resort to heroin to combat uncomfortable withdrawal effects, including vomiting, nausea, and muscle pain.
History of drug abuse
People with a prior history of substance abuse have a heightened risk of becoming addicted to heroin. This includes people with a history of abuse in their own families, such as mothers, fathers, or siblings.
Existing mental health issues
Opioids, including heroin, are very effective at relieving all types of pain. This includes emotional distress that accompanies mental health issues like depression and anxiety. Many people who suffer from mental health disorders look for ways to self-medicate. Along with abusing alcohol, many people turn to opioids to cope with their ill feelings. Repeated use of these drugs can then lead to addiction.
People who struggle with a drug addiction should not feel ashamed. The most important thing is to recognize the problem and seek help from loved ones and medical professionals to begin a recovery.