Long-Term Side Effects of Heroin on the Brain & Body
What are the Long-Term Effects of Heroin Use on the Body?
Repeated, long-term heroin use not only changes a person’s physical appearance and behavior, but also damages the body and changes the physiology of the brain. Imbalances in the neuronal and hormonal systems are not easily repaired and can take many years of treatment and therapy from a psychiatrist. Studies have shown that prolonged heroin use causes brain deterioration, which effects decision-making, the ability to regulate behavior, responses to stressful situation & more. Further, the effects on the body can cause lifelong diseases and illnesses, even if a person remains clean. Silver Linings Recovery Center, a drug & alcohol rehabilitation facility, highlights 5 common long-term heroin use effects on the brain and body.
5 Common Long-Term Effects from Heroin Use
Lack of Stress Control Skills: Due to the deterioration of the white matter in the brain, even those with many years of sobriety still have a hard time responding to stressful situations. This change to the brain predisposes heroin addicts to relapse greater than many other substances.
Liver Damage: Chronic heroin use forces the liver to detox your body at a higher rate. An overworked liver can lead to long-term damage including hepatitis and cirrhosis.
Infertility & Miscarriage: Long-term use of heroin has been linked to both infertility issues and disruptions in regular menstrual cycles. Women who use heroin are often unaware they are pregnant and will experience a miscarriage from the drug use. If you chose to keep using knowing you’re pregnant you can give birth prematurely or the full-term baby will be born addicted to heroin.
Arthritis/Rheumatologic Problems: Heroin abuse is often accompanied by malnutrition, resulting in decreased bone density, a precursor for arthritis.
Depression: During recovery, it is common to feel regret, stress and anxiety over the damage you’ve caused to those around you. Sometimes, this can lead to a state of depression, which will be addressed through individualized therapy sessions. It is important for those in recovery to continue therapy after treatment to learn how to cope with these feelings.
Detox & Rehabilitation for Heroin
If you or someone you love is suffering from an addiction to heroin or other forms of drugs & alcohol, you are not alone. Silver Linings Recovery Center is the leading provider for drug & alcohol addiction in the Philadelphia tri-state area. Get Help Now: call 855-960-3769.