Heroin is a notorious opioid street drug. Roughly 900,000 Americans use this drug in a given year. Out of those 900,000, more than two-thirds are addicted or have other diagnosable problems. Anyone who uses heroin also runs the risk of experiencing a potentially fatal overdose.
Trapped in a cycle of heroin use? There is hope. Treatment for heroin addiction has been successful for millions over the years. The process begins with detox. During heroin detox, you work with doctors to wean yourself off the drug. It’s the first step in a more extended plan to guide you to recovery. At DetoxLA’s heroin rehab in Los Angeles, we provide the expert care you need to bring your drug use to a halt.
What Is Heroin Detox?
Detoxification is a fundamental aspect of heroin addiction recovery. It’s a stage you must navigate for your recovery to stay on track. The reason for that rests in the nature of addiction. Substance abuse leads your body to develop a physical dependence on heroin. In turn, dependence triggers significant brain changes. These changes make your body believe it must have heroin to survive.
During detox, you gradually step down from your use of the drug. When more heroin is not forthcoming, the brain and body react. This reaction is commonly known as withdrawal. One of the main aims of detox is to help you cope with withdrawal’s effects. In addition, the process:
- Helps ensure that you’re physically and mentally stable
- Provides any needed secondary help for dehydration or nutritional issues
- Prepares you to move on to the next phase of treatment when detox ends
Want to know more about the goals of a heroin rehab center in Los Angeles? Contact the experts at DetoxLA today.
What Are the Signs of Heroin Withdrawal?
Heroin withdrawal can affect you in a variety of ways. No two people have the exact same experiences. However, there is a general progression to the process.
Heroin Detox Timeline
Heroin withdrawal happens in stages. Symptoms in the first day or two can include a runny nose, watery eyes, and intense sweating and yawning. You may also feel aches in muscles throughout your body. In addition, you may feel agitated or anxious and have trouble sleeping.
As withdrawal continues to its next stage, additional symptoms can include:
- Loose stools
- Nausea and vomiting
- Goose flesh
- Pupil dilation
Talk to the professionals at DetoxLA for more information on the things you may experience during heroin withdrawal.
What Medications Are Used During Heroin Detox?
Medication plays a big part in heroin detox. That’s true because the right medication can help ease the impact of withdrawal on your mind and body. Two of the main choices for heroin detox are the opioid substitutes methadone and buprenorphine.
Both of these medications are weaker than heroin. In detox, they temporarily replace that drug in your system. This replacement process doesn’t make you feel high. Instead, it keeps just enough opioids in your body to help make withdrawal more tolerable.
Methadone and buprenorphine aren’t used together. Instead, you only receive one of them. As detox proceeds, you’ll need less and less of your replacement opioid. By the time withdrawal ends, your need for it will end too.
Need more information on the medication options in an LA heroin rehab center? Speak to the recovery specialists at DetoxLA.
What Happens in Our Heroin Detox Program in Los Angeles?
Detoxification, or detox, is a fundamental aspect of heroin addiction recovery. It’s a stage you must navigate for your recovery to stay on track. The reason for that rests in the nature of addiction. Substance abuse leads your body to develop a physical dependence on drugs or alcohol. Heroin addiction thus triggers significant changes in your brain, to the point that your body believes it must have heroin to survive.
During detox, you gradually step down from your use of the drug. When more heroin is not forthcoming, the brain and body react. This begins the withdrawal stages. The physical symptoms of withdrawal can be debilitating, and, in some instances, life-threatening. For instance, vomiting can make you dangerously dehydrated. During the detox process, doctors monitor your withdrawal symptoms and seek to mitigate them.
Heroin Detox Timeline
There is no one right way to go through heroin detox. It’s very difficult to say for sure how long heroin detox will last. Every individual is different. Heroin withdrawal happens in stages, with the initial symptoms being the least severe. Those initial symptoms in the first day or two can include a runny nose, watery eyes, or intense sweating and yawning. From there, things get more difficult. In the days to come, withdrawal may include:
- Aching body/muscles
- Difficulty in sleeping
- Cramping and diarrhea
- Increased heart rate
- Elevated blood pressure
- The shakes
It’s important to stay the course through detox, to the very end, so you can move on to the next phases of treatment.
After Heroin Detox Ends
Heroin detox is not the end of your battle with heroin addiction. Heroin use disorders are serious illnesses that require care coordinated over several different phases of treatment. Heroin detox gets you ready for the next phase.
From detox, you will go into a period of addiction counseling. Working with a therapist experienced in addiction medicine, you will work during therapy sessions to unravel the forces that brought you to this point. You will also work closely on developing coping skills to deal with the stresses and temptations to come.
These therapy sessions will be at a one-on-one level as well as in groups. Evidence shows that group therapy helps build a support system for your journey to recovery. If anything, it helps eliminate the sense of isolation and loneliness you feel from addiction.
Part of coping is identifying lifestyle changes you may need to make. For instance, it’s possible that you will need to evaluate certain friendships. Some may not be in your best interests in continuing.
Beyond counseling is the aftercare stage. During aftercare, you work on limiting the risk of relapse.
Seek Help From Our Top-Rated Heroin Rehab Center in Los Angeles
Heroin detox is a process that takes perseverance and commitment. But with help from DetoxLA’s dedicated addiction specialists, you can succeed. We focus on one thing: helping you return to a life of sobriety and stability. Detox is just the first step in achieving this goal. You must also enter a primary treatment program when detox ends.
The treatment we provide in our heroin rehab center in Los Angeles helps you meet this crucial objective. Our compassionate staff of accredited doctors and counselors also provides help for other substance issues you may be experiencing. Call DetoxLA today at 818.671.4765 to learn more about our services.